Pacific Maritime Magazine - Marine Business for the Operations Sector

Above Board

Maritime news from the seven seas


September 1, 2019

In 2020, the world’s first LNG Bunker ATB will be afloat and ready for servicing LNG-fueled ships. The vessel is being built for Quality Liquefied Natural Gas Transport, Harvey Gulf’s Shane Guidry and HGIM. It is currently under construction in Pascagoula, Mississippi at the VT Halter Marine yard. Shell has already chartered the ATB to bunker four dual-fuel vessels next year.

Deadly Disasters and Other Incidents

Thankfully, no one was injured after a passenger ferry and containership banged into each other in Morocco, near the Tangier Med port. The stern fin area on the Napoles LNG ferry suffered damage, while the Carolina Star’s foreship was also damaged.

Some tense moments aboard the Celebrity Summit cruise ship when a young girl complaining of severe abdominal pain had to be taken off the ship to shoreside medical help. The girl, who was also accompanied by a nurse and a parent, was medevaced by a US Coast Guard MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter while the ship was approximately 200 miles off the Virginia coast.

The Beverley M. tug, as well as the Edward Cornwallis Canadian Coast Guard icebreaker, were called to perform a tow assist to a safe anchor location after the cargo ship M/V BBC Oregon found herself grounded not long after making her way out of Bay Bulls Harbor.

Piracy Pulse

In Lagos, Nigeria, the duty AB aboard a berthed bulk carrier was taken hostage and assaulted by 10 robbers who were able to get aboard during vessel cargo operations. The marauding group then went about their business stealing paint room ship’s stores, eventually letting the AB go and making their getaway.

Another AB-attacking incident occurred at the Port of Lagos, Nigeria aboard a berthed container ship. This time, the AB’s personal belongings were taken by three bandits who were carrying metal sticks.

Near Tanjung Priok, Indonesia, a Chief Engineer aboard a chemical tanker was injured by six knife-wielding bandits with a stealing mission in mind. However, due to the alert crew, they ended up leaving with nothing to show for their efforts.

Despite the alarm being raised, engine spares were taken by four armed thieves who got themselves aboard a berthed tanker carrying out cargo operations at Lubuk Gaung, Indonesia.

Odds and Ends

Reportedly, the world’s first plug-in hybrid ferry is now plying the waters between Norway and Sweden. Built by Ulstein Verft for Color Line, Color Hybrid is equipped with five-megawatt batteries to help reduce ship emissions and noise. The batteries are plugged into shore power, with the 65-ton battery pack taking just one hour to be recharged.

Belfast, Ireland has a new cruise terminal, which boasts a new berth, as well as additional space for shore-side activities. More than $600,000 US has been spent readying the new facility to accommodate larger cruise vessels and the expected increase in cruise traffic in Northern Ireland.

Crew fatigue led to the grounding and subsequent sinking of the Nathan E. Stewart tugboat, sending approximately 29,000 gallons of diesel fuel into BC’s Central Coast waters, part of BC First Nation’s fishing area. Kirby Corp., owner of the vessel, has been ordered to pay a fine of $2.2 million. The decision comes as a result of the company admitting to spilling the contaminant, pleading guilty to three of nine criminal charges, however, there is a First Nations civil case in the works.

According to Canada’s National Transportation Board, the culprit in an incident that resulted in the injuries of two BC Ferries’ crewmembers was the rescue boat’s painter, which had not been properly secured with enough working length. In the midst of the drill operation retrieving the rescue boat, the hoist cable was compromised, and eventually broke, sending the Queen of Cumberland’s crewmembers down nearly 36 feet to the surface of the water.

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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