Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 14/07/2015
1. Stolt Hit By Unpaid Wage Claims
The continued special focus on underpaid seafarers calling at Australia by the International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF) has snared another shipowner. The ITF reports that the Chinese seafarers onboard the Stolt Kikyo parcel tanker (built 1998; 11,545 dwt), are owed wages for two months and have not received coastal trading payments required under Australian law. The 24 crew are owed around A$250,000 in missing wages, the ITF said. The Liberian flagged Stolt Kikyo is owned by a joint venture between Nippon Yusen Kaisha (NYK) and Stolt-Nielsen.
2. IMO Slammed for Lack of Progress
A new report released by the Global Commission on the Economy and the Climate identifies ten key economic opportunities that could close up to 96 percent of the gap between business-as-usual emissions and the level needed to limit dangerous climate change. Shipping is on the list. The new report, Seizing the Global Opportunity: Partnerships for Better Growth and a Better Climate, states that because shipping companies operate in so many different countries, the transaction cost of having different policies in different states would be prohibitively high. “However, IMO has made little progress thus far.”
3. Pilot Error, Master Lies
The U.K. Marine Accident Investigation Branch has released its report into the grounding of general cargo vessel Vectis Eagle citing errors of judgement made by both pilot and master, the later trying to then hide the incident from management. On November 30, 2014, Vectis Eagle grounded as a result of the loss of directional control while entering Gijon, Spain. The loss of control occurred as the vessel was rounding an inner breakwater. The investigation identified that Vectis Eagle was unnecessarily close to the breakwater and that the turn was started too early. The pilot had been navigating by eye and his advice was not challenged by the master.
4. UN Supporting Somali Change
In recent years, the international community has successfully come together to address the threat of criminal gangs operating from Somalia’s ungoverned coastline to target commercial vessels along one of the world’s busiest shipping corridors, the Gulf of Aden. The Contact Group on Piracy off the Coast of Somalia, is a unique international partnership which continues to work toward a long-term solution building the maritime capabilities of Somalia and other countries in East Africa to better counter the piracy threat. Today, the Group is working with the Federal Government of Somali as they grapple to rebuild their state.
5. Cyber Criminals Target Transport
Organised Criminal Gangs (OCGs) are now conducting a rapidly growing number of increasingly sophisticated cyber-attacks on all major forms of transport – primarily air travel, shipping and trains. The shipping industry, too has become hugely reliant on IT. Every new ship that is now built has software to run its engines, which is almost invariably updated remotely. Complex cargo systems are also managed digitally and even cranes run on satellite-based global positioning systems (GPS). IT is also used extensively in maritime navigation systems. According to global information assurance firm, NCC Group, there are gaping security flaws in the software generally used.
6. Race to Maritime Security Bottom
What do many private maritime security companies and cheap parachutes have in common? It sounds like the start of nautical joke, but is in fact an important part of an argument put forward by Graeme Brooks the CEO of UK-based Dryad Maritime. He reckons that the role and number of PMSCs is set for a huge change in the coming months. "The race to the bottom in pricing has left some shipowner/operators and charterers spending money on ineffective or even unsafe armed solutions because they charged the least. Our advice is that this is rather like buying a cheap parachute – either do it properly or don’t waste your money.”
7. Livestock Vessel Sinks
A cargo ship carrying thousands of livestock was sailing from Somalia to the United Arab Emirates when it encountered high waves and strong winds and sank off the coast of Gulf of Aden. All animals are reported to have died and two of the 29 crew still missing. The more than 30-year-old ship was believed to be carrying more than 3,000 animals. A nearby vessel was able to rescue 29 crewmembers and the search for the missing two seafarers is ongoing. The cargo was for local businessmen based in Puntland merchants having businesses in the UAE. Livestock is the mainstay of the Somali economy, contributing 40 percent to the Somali Community GDP.
8. Chinese Collision Crew Missing
Two general cargo ships, Wan Li 8 (4,071dwt, built 2007) and Heng Run (5,287dwt, built 2008), collided with each other off Zhoushan in China yesterday leading to the sinking of Heng Run. Sierra Leone-flagged general cargo ship Heng Run was carrying ore from Vietnam to Korea while China-flagged general cargo ship Wan Li 8 (pictured) was carrying steel from Zhangjiagang to Kaohsiung. Three ships were despatched for the rescue operation, these rescued 7 crew while the local navy rescued 5 crew, while a further crew member was found dead. Another crew member swam to nearby Huangxing Island and survived, while one remains missing.
9. Crew Killed by Toxic Gas
Five Vietnamese crew have reported to have been exposed to toxic gas onboard the bulk carrier Hiram in Pengerang waters, off Malaysia. Three crew died and another two were injured having inhaled poisonous gas while working in an enclosed space on the ship. Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) has taken the two injured crew members to hospital for treatment, after receiving an emergency call from the ship. The vessel was en route to India from Bintulu Sarawak and was to call Pengerang for bunkering. Local authorities have started investigations into the cause of the incident.
10. Female Captain Named for Celebrity Cruises
For the first time in the cruise industry history, an American female captain will take command of a cruise ship. Celebrity Cruises that San Francisco native Kate McCue will command the Celebrity Summit, a 91,000 ton, 965-foot ship sailing between the U.S. east coast and Bermuda. Kate McCue’s appointment follows that of Lisa Lutoff-Perlo, who was named President and CEO of Celebrity Cruises in December 2014. “From the first time I met Kate, I looked forward to this moment, when I could extend my congratulations to her for being such a dynamic and highly respected leader who will continue to pave the way for women in the maritime industry,” said Lutoff-Perlo.
Daily news feed from Seacurus Ltd – providers of MLC crew insurance solutions www.seacurus.com
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