Pacific Maritime Magazine - Marine Business for the Operations Sector

Above Board

Maritime news from the seven seas


August 1, 2019

Next year will see the first Canadian woman helm a cruise ship for a major cruise line. Virgin Voyages’ first cruise vessel, named Scarlet Lady will be captained by Wendy Williams, who has extensive seafaring background. Williams hails from Sept-Îles, Quebec, and currently resides on BC’s Vancouver Island.

Deadly Disasters and Other Incidents

A sorry end for two people who were fishing along the Calcasieu River near Hackberry, Louisiana when the fishing skiff they were aboard allided with a submerged dredge pipeline. One person, reportedly ejected from the vessel, lost his life, while the other sustained severe injuries.

In the Gulf of Mexico, two people died and another was injured during a lifeboat exercise on Royal Dutch Shell’s Auger Tension Leg Platform.

A pressurized cover from a sandblasting unit reportedly hit a contracted dock worker in the head, causing him to fall at Canada’s Irving Shipyard, located in Halifax. At the time of the incident, the worker who was performing equipment servicing tasks, and was taken to local hospital. Unfortunately, a few days later, he died of his injuries.

Piracy Pulse

Despite wielding a knife and presenting it as a threat to duty officers aboard an anchored bulk carrier near Bandar Penawar, Johor, Malaysia, a lone, would-be robber ended up making a quick exit to a waiting boat, with no prize in his grasp.

Ship’s stores were taken by six brazen bandits brandishing knives who use the anchor chain of an anchored bulk carrier at Macapa Anchorage in Brazil. They were able to get away despite the alarm being raised.

In Indonesia, at Taboneo Anchorage, a group of seven marauders threatened the crew of an anchored bulk carrier with knives, thus enabling the thieves to steal ship’s stores and take off.

At Cigading Port in Indonesia, ship engine spares were taken by two bandits intent on breaking into the steering gear room and grabbing what they could. They were able to vamoose despite the action of the crew to intervene by using the ship’s whistle and making the robber’s whereabouts known by using the public address system.

Odds and Ends

A new marine simulator facility and training program has been launched by Seaspan Marine Transportation in partnership with SeaWays Global. As part of this multimillion-dollar agreement, Seaspan Marine and SeaWays have developed a customized, first-of-its-kind training program aimed at ship docking and ship assists in its ports. The two fully-enclosed simulators feature 17 computers and 12 displays, providing a floor-to-ceiling, 360-degree environmental visual that completely immerses trainees in real-world scenarios.

The new marine simulators from Transas (part of Wärtsilä) are a key component of this training program. The facility provides advanced educational opportunities for Seaspan Marine mariners, giving them access to continuous, real-time training.

In an effort to reduce collisions at sea, and better optimize voyages, Carnival is installing a Sea Traffic Management (STM) system on board all of its ships, after a pilot project involving several of its Aida and Costa Crociere brands was successfully completed. Utilizing the STM will provide higher visibility across the fleet, as voyage data can be shared with ports, shore centre operators and other shipping companies.

The Roald Amundsen, named for the famous Norwegian-born intrepid explorer who was the first to lead a daunting expedition to the fabled Northwest Passage in 1903, is reportedly the world’s first diesel hybrid cruise ship able to sail under battery power alone for select voyage periods. Built by Hurtigruten, the vessel is expected to sail the Northwest Passage during her maiden season itinerary, the first ship of its kind to do so.

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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