Pacific Maritime Magazine - Marine Business for the Operations Sector

Above Board

Maritime news from the seven seas


July 1, 2019

If environmental assessments go well, an impressive inland deep-water terminal project will be in the works along the St. Lawrence River. The Quebéc Port Authority, Hutchison Ports and CN are partnering on the estimated $775 million undertaking to build the Laurentia terminal, which will reportedly be able to accommodate mega ships and be located near highway and railway connections.

Deadly Disasters and Other Incidents

Twenty people were confirmed dead after the 89-foot double-decker cruise boat Hableany collided with the 443-foot river cruiser Viking Sigyn during a rainstorm, overturned and sank on the Danube in Budapest.

The mayor of Venice, Italy says cruise ships must change their routes after the 13-deck MSC Opera experienced an engine failure, continued “slowly but inevitably towards the dock” with sirens wailing, scraped along a wharf and crashed into a tourist riverboat, injuring five women aboard the moored vessel.

A 100-square-foot container aboard the cargo vessel Cape Knox proved extremely challenging for firefighters called to attend an engine room fire while the ship was berthed at New Orleans, Louisiana’s Poland Avenue Wharf. Squeezing into the space meant each responder carefully making way, one-by-one, inside while trying to work quickly before their supply of air ran out.

Tourists aboard the small cruise vessel Galápagos Majestic transiting near the Galapagos Archipelago, Ecuador, got more than they bargained for when they had to evacuate the ship after it grounded. All 26 on board were safely taken away after they transferred into two lifeboats. Afterward, the ship subsequently sank.

An Italian billionaire lost his super yacht named MY Song reportedly (and initially thought) due to its cradle malfunctioning during a voyage on the MV Brattinsborg cargo vessel while it was transiting in the Mediterranean Sea.

Piracy Pulse

In Macapa Anchorage, Brazil, ship’s stores were taken after a group of six bandits got on board using the anchor chain of an anchored bulk carrier. Despite the alarm being raised and the crew mustering, the robbers were able to take off with their loot.

A crane barge that was under tow near Tanjung Piai, Johor, Malaysia, was the object of desire for a group of marauders who arrived in five boats. To their delight, they were able to get away with stolen goods.

A different kind of prize was on the mind of one robber who tried to steal the dinghy of a sailing vessel at anchor near Pulau Doom, Sorong, Indonesia. All that was needed was a light to be shone on the would-be thief and some stern words and that was the end of that.

At Conakry Anchorage, Guinea, four weapon-wielding robbers were able to get away with several items, including cash, after taking the crew hostage and going through their accommodations. Additionally, the Master of the bulk carrier was injured in the unfortunate skirmish.

In another hostage-taking incident, this time near Pulau Mapur, Indonesia, four knife-wielding thieves managed to grab personal cash among other items after tying up the Master and AB of a general cargo ship that was underway.

At Puerto Jose Anchorage in Venezuela, crew alertness and the alarm being raised was enough to send six would-be robbers packing after they tried to board an anchored tanker.

Odds and Ends

After a dry period of 25 years without a new icebreaker, the CCGS Captain Molly Kool has recently been added to the Canadian fleet stationed in St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador.

Recently, the newest Offshore Fisheries Science Vessel (OFSV) for the Canadian government was launched. Built by Seaspan’s North Vancouver Shipyards, it is the second in a fleet of three that are being constructed as part of the non-combat building program under the National Shipbuilding Strategy.

Have questions?

Could be about news, trends, basic industry terms, ‘how-it’s-done’ or something you’re observing in your own industry sector. Send them to and I’ll do my best to answer them, either by email or in one of my upcoming columns (where first name-only references will be used).

Kathy Smith writes for global maritime trade journals and provides marketing copy to maritime businesses worldwide. She can be reached at


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