Ship Detained Over Crew Wages, Food, Hygiene

By MarEx 2015-09-10 17:52:30

The Australian Maritime Safety Authority has detained the Panama flagged bulk carrier MV Apellis after an inspection revealed a number of deficiencies relating to the working conditions of the crew.

The MV Apellis is operated by Pyrsos Shipping Co Ltd and chartered by Hudson Shipping Lines.

AMSA inspected the vessel at Esperance grain jetty after receiving a complaint from the International Transport Workers Federation raising concerns about the welfare of the crew. Once on board, the AMSA surveyor discovered a number of deficiencies including:

• Seafarers not being repatriated as required by their employment agreements;

• Seafarers not being provided a monthly account of wages for the month of August;

• One crew member found to working beyond medical restrictions;

• No working washing machine in crew laundry;

• Inadequate quality or nutritional value of food; and

• Seafarers not paid monthly as required by their employment agreements.

The vessel has been detained on the matter of non-payment of wages. The MV Apellis will remain under detention by AMSA until this deficiency is rectified.

AMSA’s General Manager of Ship Safety, Allan Schwartz, said that the proper treatment of seafarers is just as important as the proper maintenance of ships’ equipment – a failure in either system can lead to serious accidents.

“All ships in Australian waters need to comply with Australian standards,” Schwartz said. “Seafarers live difficult lives often spending many months at sea away from their families and friends. Any vessel which is found to be in breach of the MLC or other Australian standards will be detained by AMSA and repeat offenders risk being banned from Australian waters.”

The vessel is crewed by a mix of Indonesians and Ukrainians.

The maritime union, ITF’s Assistant National Coordinator Matt Purcell said a volunteer ITF inspector boarded the ship to meet with the crew after receiving a complaint.

“The person we sent up the gangway was distressed by what he saw and said the crew were fearful of repercussions,” Purcell said.

“Food and water is being rationed, which as well as being an outright contravention of MLC, it’s also inhumane.

“We have one crewmember, the steward on $200-a-month, another the, chief engineer, claims he hasn’t received a single cent in eight months. The majority of the crew just want to go home to their families after their ordeal.

“There is also a concern that there is not enough stores to sustain the crew on their scheduled voyage to Indonesia.”

ITF President Paddy Crumlin said he was worried there would be an increase in these incidents of exploitation as Australia’s Abbott Government moved towards further relaxing shipping regulation through amendments to the Coastal Trading Act.


Increased Cable-Laying Speed With Wärtsilä’s Solution

By MarEx 2015-09-10 16:20:50

In 2014, the Prysmian Group selected Wärtsilä to supply the equipment needed to convert the Group’s Cable Enterprise barge into an independently operating cable-laying vessel, meaning that the barge would operate without the need of tugs. Wärtsilä’s equipment delivery included additional engines and 8 MW of power generation for six new thrusters, a switchboard, and power management systems for dynamic positioning capabilities.

“We preferred a single supplier and selected Wärtsilä for this project, because their complete solution contained exactly what we required. Due to their proven capability and expertise in this area, Wärtsilä was able to tailor a highly competitive solution”, says Raul Gil Boronat, Chief Operating Officer Submarine at Prysmian Group

The Prysmian Group wanted to enhance its offering of turnkey submarine power cable installation services and decided to convert the Cable Enterprise tugged barge into an independently operating cable vessel. Wärtsilä was selected as the successful bidder for this project due to the company’s proven solutions and ability to understand the requirements of the Prysmian Group. Following the conversion, the Cable Enterprise will start operation on an EXXON field off the west coast of the USA in early summer 2015. This area has very strict environmental regulations and the production fields need to have a shore power connection in order to reduce the NOX and CO2 emissions from the production fields.

The challenge for Wärtsilä in this project was to convert the barge for independent operation, i.e. operation without any assistance from tugs. Moreover, the converted barge must be able to use its own propulsion for steady positioning and still fulfil strict environmental requirements.

The conversion took place at the Victor Lenac yard in Croatia. Wärtsilä delivered two Wärtsilä 26 main engines, two diesel generators, two bow thrusters and drive motors, two retractable thrusters, and integrated electrical and automation control systems. Furthermore, as part of the scope of delivery all the engines had to be connected to Wärtsilä Silencers and a NOX reactor, which would ensure that the vessel can operate with emissions well below IMO Tier III standards.

In a project of this magnitude, with many different stakeholders involved and tight deadlines, the schedule is always a challenge. But in this project, all the parties worked as a team to achieve a common success, says John Chester, General Manager, Services Sales, Wärtsilä UK.


The entire vessel was upgraded during the conversion project. This work included new accommodation and operations decks as well as a new cable tank for future HVDC projects. The ship’s ability to operate in shallow waters remains.

After the conversion of the barge into a ship with DP2 capabilities, the vessel will no longer need tugs during cable-laying. In the future, positioning will be managed with the help of the thrusters delivered by Wärtsilä.

This conversion will allow the Prysmian Group to enhance its offering of turnkey products and services with the ability to offer cable-laying services at a speed which is 10 times faster than a conventional barge, concludes Raul Gil Boronat.

“10 times faster than a conventional barge.”





Converting the barge to operate independently under its own propulsion

Fulfilling the requirements of

IMO Tier III standards

Installation of two main engines, propelling a Voith propulsor, two diesel generators for driving the bow thrusters and retractable thrusters, two bow thrusters and drive motors, as well as two retractable thrusters

Connecting all engines to Wärtsilä Silencers and a NOX reactor, ensuring operation in accordance with

IMO Tier III Design, supply and commissioning of an integrated electrical and automation system consisting of switchboards, variable frequency drives, transformers, soft starters and power management systems

10 times faster cable-laying operation than before the conversion

Cable-laying without assistance from tugs

Steady positioning thanks to the DP2 system

ABS/ US Coastguard compliant systems for DP2 operations

Ability to operate in areas covered by IMO Tier III standards


First Fully Electrical Ferry Wins Efficiency Award

By MarEx 2015-09-10 16:05:44

The first purely battery-driven car and passenger ferry Ampere has won the Ship Efficiency Award in the Environmental Technology category. The award recognizes innovative solutions which have contributed to reducing the environmental impact of shipping operations.
The 80 meter-long DNV GL classed vessel is one of three ferries operated by the Norwegian shipping company Norled between Lavik and Oppedal and is able to carry 120 cars and 360 passengers. “Ampere is trading in Sognefjord with 100 per cent regularity and consumes 50 per cent less energy compared with a traditional diesel ferry on the same route. It has proven to be a huge success for Norled,” said Claes Skat-Rørdam of award sponsor Hempel on behalf of the judges.
Tord Helland, Finance Director at Norled, accepted the award in London yesterday. “The Ship Efficiency Award is not only recognition for the hard work we have done with our project partners, but it also confirms our efforts and contribution to the global climate goals by reducing air pollution,” Helland said. “An electrical ferry that can save up to one million litres of fuel annually, thereby preventing 2,640 tonnes of carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere, can make a strong statement in this regard.” Ampere runs 34 times a day with a crossing time of 20 minutes. Between the trips the 1MWh lithium-polymer battery pack on board can be charged in only ten minutes.
“We are honoured that Ampere has received this internationally coveted award,” said Stephen Bligh, Head of Shipping Advisory UK at DNV GL. “As a classification society, together with the shipyard Fjellstrand and the various technology providers, we have helped to make the vision of operator Norled happen and demonstrated that new clean technologies don’t compromise market competitiveness.”
Ampere has been awarded the DNV GL class notation 1A1 LC R4 (nor) Car Ferry C Battery Power. The notation is mandatory for vessels that use batteries as one of their main sources – or the sole source – of energy for propulsion. DNV GL has also developed several services to promote battery and hybrid technology in shipping, such as a guideline for large maritime battery systems, a new tool for qualifying battery-related systems, a battery ready service (technical, economic and environmental performance analyses), battery sizing and optimization tools and an introduction course to maritime battery systems.


Greenpeace Nabs Pirate Fishing Vessel

By MarEx 2015-09-10 15:54:32

Activists from Greenpeace’s Rainbow Warrior boarded a Taiwanese tuna fishing vessel outside of Papua New Guinea believed to be part of a pirate shipping operation.

Greenpeace discovered the Shuen De Ching No. 888on Wednesday, September 9 and alleges several irregularities with its logbook. The vessel documented only three shark carcasses in its logbook but was found with about 75kg of shark fins, which suggests it caught at least 42 sharks.

Taiwanese law and Pacific shipping rules dictate that shark fins may not exceed five percent of the weight of a catch, and with only three carcasses reported, the Shuen De Ching appears to be in violation.

Greenpeace New Zealand has reported the case to the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission (WCFPC) and to neighboring Pacific Island countries. Greenpeace has also blacklisted the vessel and retailers are being urged not to purchase fish from the ship.

“We demand that the Taiwanese Government order this illegal vessel to stop fishing and return to port immediately for a full and transparent investigation,” Greenpeace said in a statement. “There is a Taiwanese patrol boat in the region and this is exactly the sort of illegal activity they should be tackling.”


Maersk Box Ship Spills Oil in Mediterranean

By MarEx 2015-09-10 15:20:34

Cleanup is underway after the Maersk Line containership M/V Nele Maersk reported a spill 80 miles off Barcelona in the Mediterranean Sea. The spill occurred during routine bunkering operations on Tuesday, September 8.

Nele Maersk was enroute to Genoa from Algeciras with 21 crewmembers aboard when the spill occurred. Spain’s Salvamento Maritimo deployed a helicopter, a surveillance aircraft and anti-pollution vessels soon after the incident was reported. The quantity of oil spilled is unknown.

Nele Maersk is a 30,000-DWT vessel


Seaspan Appoints Three Senior Leaders

By MarEx 2015-09-10 14:53:31

Seaspan today named three new senior leaders to its Corporate Executive Team, announcing the appointments of Paul Thomas as Vice President, Engineering – Vancouver Shipyards; Matt Boydston as Vice President, Finance – Seaspan Shipyards; and Billy Garton as General Counsel for Seaspan ULC.

As Vice President, Engineering, Paul is primarily responsible for engineering and design on new ship construction, in addition to the development and maintenance of engineering standards and engineering governance for Vancouver Shipyards (VSY). Prior to joining VSY as Director of Ship Construction in 2013, he spent the majority of his career at BAE Systems in Melbourne, Australia, where he held various executive management roles. He has 20 years of experience in the shipbuilding and heavy project construction industries, and has worked on a number of major shipbuilding programs including the ANZAC Frigate, Air Warfare Destroyer and Landing Helicopter Dock Programs for the Australian Navy, as well as Project Protector for the Royal New Zealand Navy.

As Vice President, Finance, Matt is responsible for strategic financial oversight of the shipyard division and for driving profitability and financial performance of all three shipyards. Additionally, Matt is accountable for the financial controls and efficient processes needed to support both government and commercial business. As a key advisor to the President – Seaspan Shipyards and its senior management team, he is responsible for ensuring that information and metrics are available to inform value-added business decisions. Matt has been serving as Controller at Seaspan Shipyards since 2006, during which time he has been closely involved in supporting other Federal Government initiatives, including the Victoria In-Service Support Contract (VISSC) and Frigate Life Extension (FELEX) projects, as well as the Coast Guard Motor Lifeboat (MLB) construction program.

Matt Boydston, Vice President, Finance

Matt brings over 20 years of financial leadership in industrial manufacturing settings to his new role.

Effective October 1, Billy will assume the role of General Counsel for Seaspan ULC (Seaspan) and be responsible for providing leadership and direction for commercial contracting across Seaspan’s business units, including Government Contracting, Supply Chain, Operations, Commercial, Insurance and Claims.

Over the past 25 years, Billy has worked at Seaspan’s legal partner, Bull Housser on a number of important Seaspan projects, including playing a key role in the Company’s National Shipbuilding Procurement Strategy (NSPS) contracting efforts. Throughout his legal career, Billy has worked with many of the largest companies in B.C.’s forestry, mining and manufacturing businesses on mergers and acquisitions and regulatory compliance, and has represented industry and governments regarding First Nations benefit agreements and consultation matters.

Billy Garton, General Counsel

The Best Lawyers in Canada publication recently recognized Billy as the 2016 “Lawyer of the Year” for Natural Resources Law in Vancouver.

“Seaspan’s senior leadership group represents the best-of-the-best in the marine transportation, shipbuilding and ship repair industries, and I am delighted to congratulate Paul, Matt and Billy on their new roles within our world-class team,” said Jonathan Whitworth, CEO, Seaspan. “With these appointments, we have bolstered our senior leadership team with a wealth of extensive and diverse experience as Seaspan continues to drive Canada’s shipbuilding and marine industrial base.”