Fire Is Second Incident for Vessel This Month

By Kathryn Stone 2015-05-25 10:00:56

A fire broke out on the Maersk Karachi Friday while it undergoing repairs at the Port of Bremerhaven, making it the second incident onboard the vessel in under a month.

Around 70 firefighters and four tug boats were brought in to help battle the blaze in the ship’s hold. Foam and water was pumped into the vessel for eight hours until the fire was finally extinguished on Saturday. German news sources are reporting that while the exact cause has yet to be determined, the fire may be connected with welding operations on the ship. No one was injured in the incident, but authorities warned local residents over the weekend to keep their windows closed to avoid toxic fumes.

Additionally, water used to extinguish the fire is filled with chemicals and cannot be introduced back into the surrounding area. The combination of fire damage and water disposal efforts will extend the timetable for repair efforts onboard the ship.

The Maersk Karachi was the scene of another unfortunate accident a little over a week prior. A 52-year old crane operator was killed May 14 after the cabin of the crane fell into the Maersk Karachi’s hold. The welding and repair efforts that may have caused Friday’s fire are being made in response to damage incurred in the first incident earlier this month.

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Libyan Warplanes Attack Oil Tanker

By Reuters 2015-05-25 08:58:32

Warplanes from Libya’s official government attacked an oil tanker docked outside the city of Sirte on Sunday, wounding three people and setting the ship on fire, officials said.

It was the third confirmed strike by the internationally recognized government on oil tankers, part of a conflict between competing administrations and parliaments allied to armed factions fighting for control of the country four years after the ousting of Muammar Gaddafi.

The recognized premier Abdullah al-Thinni has been working out of the east since losing the capital Tripoli in August last year to a rival faction. Both sides have been attacking each other with warplanes and thanks to loose alliances with former anti-Gaddafi rebels have also been fighting on several fronts on the land.

“Our jets warned an unflagged ship off Sirte city, but it ignored the warning,” the eastern air force commander Saqer al-Joroushi told Reuters.

“We gave it a chance to evaluate the situation, then our fighting jets attacked the ship because it was unloading fighters and weapons,” he added.

“The ship now is on fire. We are in war and we do not accept any security breaches, whether by land, air or sea,” Jourushi added.

Mohamed El Harari, a spokesman for Tripoli-based state oil firm NOC, said the Libyan tanker Anwar Afriqya owned by NOC had been carrying gasoil for Sirte’s power plant. Another oil industry official said the size of the cargo was 25,000 tons.

A Reuters reporter could see the tanker docked near Sirte’s power plant. Two parts of the tanker were still burning but Mohamed Abdulkafi, a military spokesman in Tripoli, said late in the evening the fire had been extinguished.

A port worker said there had been two attacks on the tanker docked outside the port. First a plane had fired rockets at the tanker’s cockpit and crew’s cabins, he said. “Then the plane attacked again with guns.”

“They attacked after we had discharged the first tank and were readying the second,” he said, adding that there was the risk of a gasoil spill.

Sirte’s power plant on the western outskirts is controlled by forces loyal to Tripoli. The rest of the city has fallen into the hands of Islamic State which has exploited a security vacuum.

The eastern government had already attacked in January a Greek-operated tanker docking at Derna, killing two seamen and accusing the shipper of sending weapons. NOC had said the tanker was only carrying heavy fuel oil for a power plant.

Two weeks ago forces loyal to the official government shelled a Turkish ship off the Libyan coast after it was warned not to approach. One crew member was killed in what Turkey described as a “contemptible attack”.

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Libyan air force strafes tanker

A product tanker has been strafed by the Libyan air forces amid tensions between rival political groups.
The 2004-built 35,000 dwt Anwaar Afriqya was attacked while being docked at Sirte.
IHS Maritime’s AISLive vessel-tracking data shows Anwaar Afriqya loaded gasoil in Piraeus, Greece, in mid-May
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Five bidders to develop Davao port

Five companies are now bidding for the development of Davao port, an official confirmed with IHS Maritime.
“Yes, there are now five bidders and the names of the companies are correct,” an official with the Philippines’ Public-Private Partnership (PPP) Center said when asked about two new entrants.
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Charges Laid against Hibernia for 2013 Spill

By MarEx 2015-05-25 05:14:51

The Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Offshore Petroleum Board (C-NLOPB) has laid four charges against Hibernia Management and Development Company (HMDC) for alleged offences related to the spilling of crude oil from the offshore loading system of the Hibernia Platform.

The spill was first reported on December 18, 2013, and was not stopped on January 1, 2014. About 6,000 liters of oil were spilt into the sea about 350 kilometers offshore from St. John’s. The release occurred from the Hibernia platform’s north loading system.

Based on the information obtained during the investigation process, C-NLOPB conservation officers allege that HMDC caused or permitted crude oil to be spilled into the offshore area, failed to take all reasonable measures to prevent a further spill and restarted work that had been suspended because of a spill while that spill was ongoing.

C-NLOPB conservation officers also allege that HMDC failed to fully report the particulars in the manner required by the applicable regulations.

Exxon Mobil Canada, Chevron Canada Resources and Suncor Energy are the largest shareholders in Hibernia, reports The Globe and Mail.

Previous spills in the region include 165,000 liters from the Terra Nova FPSO in 2004, and 4,470 liters from Husky Energy’s SeaRose FPSO vessel in 2008.

The C-NLOPB is the independent joint agency of the Governments of Canada and Newfoundland and Labrador responsible for the regulatory oversight of petroleum-related activities in the Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Offshore Area, including; health and safety for offshore workers, protection of the environment, management and conservation of offshore petroleum resources, compliance with the provisions of the Accord Acts that deal with Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador employment and industrial benefits, issuance of licenses for offshore exploration and development, and resource evaluation, data collection, curation and distribution.

As the matter is now before the courts, the C-NLOPB will not be commenting further at this time.

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