Maritime Monday 107

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April 21, 2008

The following is posted by Fred Fry:

Welcome to this 107th edition of Maritime Monday.

You can find Maritime Monday 57 here. (Published 30 April 2007)

You can find last week’s edition here.

You can find links to all the previous editions at the bottom of this post. You are encouraged to participate using the comment link/form at the bottom of the post. If you have photos or stories to tell, do email me at [email protected]


This Week’s Photos:

This week’s photos come from the website of Eastwind Group:

Founded in 1987 by American and Japanese shipping professionals, Eastwind has grown substantially in our first 20 years of existence. From our start in the dry bulk and reefer shipping sectors, Eastwind has expanded the scope and depth of our transportation services, including acquisitions ranging from single ship purchases to major fleets. For example, Eastwind and our Kura affiliate acquired the Republic of Georgia’s tanker fleet in 2005, and Eastwind, in partnership with NYKCool, acquired Chiquita’s “Great White Fleet” in 2007.

Much more about Eastwind can be found here.








Their homepage can be found here. From there you can find many more interesting photos at their photo gallery as well as in their fleet list of the 116 ships they currently own/operate.


This Week’s Items:

EagleSpeak has detailed coverage of the after-effects of France’s capture of some pirates responsible for the French yacht Le PONANT piracy attack, including demands for compensation from local Somalis. AFP has the latest update on the captured hostages in “Somali pirates charged with hostage-taking by French court“. At least in this case, the French appear to be wasting no time. The pirates face ‘life’ in prison.

The Mirror (UK) has “Bandits who hijacked luxury yacht followed a “polite pirating guide”“.

The six raiders claimed they had a good conduct manual on how to seize foreign vessels to ensure their prisoners felt “relaxed and cheerful” during their week’s captivity.

The written guide said they must not sexually assault women hostages, not shout at prisoners, give them food and drink regularly and let them sleep and use the toilet when they ask.

Yet, despite the guide and despite being muslims, somehow the pirates managed to clean out the ship’s bar.

Chaotic Synaptic Activity has for his weekly series Monday Maritime Matters a summary of the long distinguished career of Vice Admiral Aaron Merrill.

Times Online (UK) has the explosive revelation “Pirates can claim UK asylum“. (Found at The Astute Bloggers.)

THE Royal Navy, once the scourge of brigands on the high seas, has been told by the Foreign Office not to detain pirates because doing so may breach their human rights.

Warships patrolling pirate-infested waters, such as those off Somalia, have been warned that there is also a risk that captured pirates could claim asylum in Britain.

The Foreign Office has advised that pirates sent back to Somalia could have their human rights breached because, under Islamic law, they face beheading for murder or having a hand chopped off for theft. (Note: See the Royal Navy’s clarification/denial of this story below via Fairplay.)

gCaptain has “A Sinking Ship – World’s Largest Yacht Transporter” and covers questions over who was really in charge of the fishing vessel ALASKA RANGER in the events leading to her going down in “Sinking of the Alaska Ranger – Fishing Master vs Captain“.

Khaleej Times (UAE) has “Three African kids who sneaked into cargo ship arrive in UAE“.

here is a Google News link to stories covering the still unfolding story of the COSCO ship AN YUE JIANG which is carrying weapons bound for Zimbabwe. The Scotsman notes that the German Central Bank is looking to seize the cargo “as compensation for non-repayment of a £30 million loan made in 2000 to shore up the collapsing state-owned Zimbabwe Iron & Steel Corp”. iafrica covers the International Transport Workers Federation’s (ITF) efforts to ensure that local longshoremen refuse to work the ship, wherever it calls port. It was longshoremen who refused to discharge the ship’s cargo in South Africa. It would be interesting to hear how COSCO’s sales force are spinning this story. Not that they would suffer from a boycott, more like a slow death by a thousand cuts as slowly bookings are shifted to other lines.

AllAfrica has “Kenya: 24-Hour System Makes Cargo Clearance Faster“.

BBC News has a video report from a shipyard in Belfast, Ireland in “Napoli turned into steel scrap“. So get your last look at what’s left of the forward half of the infamous ship.

Houston Ship Pilot (and gCaptain photo of the day favorite photographer) OneEighteen has a cool photo of the bridge of the tanker GAS DIANA as it meets another vessel in the famous Houston Ship Channel.

Kennebec Captain creatively answers the often-asked question “Ship or a boat?” through the taking of a quiz. Read it and never make the mistake again.

AutoBlog has the latest GPS mishap where the driver decided to ignore what his eyes were telling him to instead blindly obey directions from a little box listening to satellites in space.

Mr. Boat Blog has “German mine detonated in front of holidaymakers.

Shipping Times has good news in “Conservation vessel FARLEY MOWAT seized by mounties“. More coverage over at EagleSpeak.

The Globe and Mail (Canada) has a timeline of events leading to the arrest of the FARLEY MOWAT.

Chosun (Korea) has “Korea Wins Sea Mining Rights from Tonga“.

businessGreen has suggestions of ‘short-sea’ shipping in “Could river routes cut the UK’s haulage CO2?” Of course to do this, shippers are going to have to shift their expectations of how long it takes to get something to its destination.

The Sydney Morning HeraldDog rescued after months at sea“. His original owners abandoned him for some unknown reason. My guess is that they think they owe people money for rescuing them.

Desicritics has an in-depth post on “Recycling Ships” in the third-world.

Freight Dawg has more on the ongoing problem for US exporters in “Container Shortages hamper US Exports“.

SoCal Cabbie notes that all the mariners that he picks up all say that they love working at sea.

America’s Port Blog witnesses a “Crane Salute“.

Lloyd’s List has “Eurogate plans E1.1bn of investments“.

Lloyd’s List also has what is no surprise at all: “Alarm bells over new generation of unsafe ships“. Many things that are made in China are simply crap. Why should ships be any different?


According to “Tehran Times”, Britain’s “Lloyds” has awarded Iran’s shipping line with the International Ship and Port Facility Security Code (ISSC), the Public Relations Department of the company announced. The International Maritime Organization (IMO) obliges the ships to install security system for vessels.

The International Maritime Organization and France “agree on prevention and suppression of piracy and armed robbery“.

IMO Secretary-General, Efthimios E. Mitropoulos, has commended the recent intervention of French naval forces which succeeded in releasing all the crew of the French yacht, Le Ponant – hijacked by pirates in the Gulf of Aden, off the coast of Somalia, on 4 April 2008. He also praised the co-operation between the authorities of France and the Transitional Federal Government of Somalia in resolving the incident without conflict, injury or loss of life, and in apprehending the suspected pirates.

IMC Brokers has “What is a tug? Do you know?“.

The April Edition of MarineLog is now online:

Sea * Fever has “The World’s Largest Ship Model“. It’s the half-size whaling vessel LAGODA. Go and check out the photo and video of current restoration work.

Robin Storm has “Atlantic water temperatures climbing, storm experts warn

MarEx Newsletter passes on good news in “Siba Ships Appoints Female Master to Largest Livestock Carrier“. (See some photos of Siba Ships livestock carriers in Maritime Monday 60)

MarEx Newsletter also announces that they have a new website at:

MarineBuzz has “International Coastal Cleanup by Ocean Conservancy“. Seems that cigarette butts are the number one collected item by far.

MarineBuzz also has “PBS documentary series ‘Carrier’ to unveil USS Nimitz“. The series starts on 27 April.

SAILORS, MARINERS & WARRIORS LEAGUE has “Seaman Acts To Aid Man In Peril“, in Japan, saving the man’s life.

Shirlaw News Group has “Submarine ’caused’ sinking of French trawler“. Seems that they needed to blame someone as there is absolutely no proof that a submarine was involved, but since they are not willing to entertain any other explanations, then it must have been a sub. Hmm…

Maritime Accident Casebook has two incident related posts in “Container Shifters To Get Bloody Knuckles For Napoli Grounding?” and “Kneejerk Legislation and Cosco Busan bandwagonning“.

BitterEnd explains how to calculate how much it will cost to tow your boat if it happens to break down and much more if they need to first pull you free from the bottom. That is if you don’t first insure yourself by buying an ‘unlimited towing’ card first. I have to say that it’s hard to say no to the price, especially considering how much money the boat is going to cost you before the season is over.

Tugster has photos of a “Suezmax in Arthur Kill“.

Tims Times has video of the Brofjorden pilot departing the ship.

The Yankee Sailor has “Nigeria overtakes Indonesia in piracy“.

The Destroyermen have “Sailing Through History“. They are also taking an ‘operational pause’ to pro actively (they say) sort out some issues to avoid crossing their Navy overloads who so far have permitted this at-sea blogging experiment. Still, I wonder how often someone in the Pentagon just happens to stumble across this or other ‘Navy’ blogs and gets the urge to start demanding answers.

Lloyd’s List Newsroom Blog questions ‘the suitability of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society to be a shipowner’.

Data Center Knowledge has “Ships Impounded in Middle East Cable Cuts” as the cable owner used satellite photos to identify the MV HOUNSLOW and MT ANN.

SteelJaw Scribe remembers with his weekly series “Flightdeck Friday: Special Edition – Doolittle Raid 66th Anniversary“.

WebUrbanist has photos of an abandoned Soviet City built on the sea as support for offshore oil drilling operations.

Hellenic Shipping News has “Piracy Sparks High-Tech Defenses“. Well yes, all these things and shoot them too.

Hengineer is currently sailing as an engineer on the USNS KANAWHA. He has posted photos of “Fueling up the HMCS Charlottetown” a Canadian warship.

Shipping Times also has “Rallying call for Dumbarton-built DELTA QUEEN – Efforts grow to save historic vessel of long gone era…“. So far Congress continues to refuse to offer another waiver for the vessel as part of their appeasement to their AFL-CIO overlords.

FijiVilliage covers jailtime and fines for two Fiji Citizens for stowing away on the containership MV CAPTAIN TASMAN.

Fresh Bilge has a photo of the mysterious ‘green flash’.

The Stupid Shall Be Punished has a photo of a huge sub-shaped barbecue. has the very interesting computer/shipping post “If a programming language was a boat…“.

Greenpeace has “Destructive Fishing Gear Confiscated!“.


Haight’s Maritime Items has:

Caribbean Sea – tanker rescues mariners after sinking – The US Coast Guard issued a press release stating that a nearby tanker diverted to rescue the 11-man crew of a Korean freighter that sank in the Caribbean Sea. The freighter sank after its cargo shifted in a storm. (4/16/08). – Dennis Bryant Holland & Knight homepage (Used with Permission)

Fairplay Daily News has:

Le Ponant six face French justice – A FRENCH state prosecutor has opened a preliminary judicial enquiry against six pirates arrested by French armed forces in Somalia on Friday. – A FRENCH state prosecutor has opened a preliminary judicial enquiry against six men arrested by French armed forces in Somalia on Friday. The move follows the release of 30 crew onboard CMA CGM-owned cruise ship Le Ponant. French police have begun talks with the crew, who arrived in Paris from Somalia last night.

The six have been charged with hijacking a ship and arresting and kidnapping citizens with the intention of demanding a ransom. They are alleged to have been among at least 20 men involved in the hijack of the Le Ponant, which began in international waters off North Somalia on 4 April. A stolen fishing boat was used as a base from which to launch the speed boats that carried out the attack. The men are alleged to have fired warning shots and later ransacked the Le Ponant, emptying the ship’s bar.

Le Ponant’s Captain Patrick Marchesseau told French media that he had managed to open a channel of communication with authorities without the pirates´ knowledge. A direct dialogue between CMA-CGM director Rodolphe Saadé and one of the pirates led to the release of the hostages after the company paid a sum of at least $2M. Marchesseau, the last hostage to leave Le Ponant, dove into the sea from the ship after the ransom was paid.

The six detainees were arrested and part of the ransom was recovered after the French army fired shots at their getaway car. The French government has denied claims from Somali government representatives that eight people were killed and eight injured during the attempt to recover the ransom.

The majority of Le Ponant’s crew are French, but the French government has pointed out that bringing the men to justice in France would be subject to an agreement with Somalia. – Fairplay Homepage (Used with Permission)


Navy denies ‘no pirate arrest’ story – THE Royal Navy today denied reports that it had been instructed not to take Somali pirates into custody in case they claimed asylum in the UK.

THE Royal Navy today denied reports that it had been instructed not to take Somali pirates into custody in case they claimed asylum in the UK. There is “no truth” in the Times Online report published last Sunday, MoD-RN spokesman Mike Davis-Marks told Sea Sentinel.

The report said that the UK’s Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) had told warships not to arrest pirates because they could claim asylum in the UK, and also that sending Somali pirates back to Somalia could breach their human rights because of dire punishments under Islamic law.

The FCO declined to discuss the Times story, and told Sea Sentinel it does not comment on internal communications between government departments.

Davis-Marks said that the Navy takes its orders from the Ministry of Defence, not the Foreign Office, and that the service’s Rules of Engagement give the navy on the high seas an absolute mandate to prevent piracy. “We have a legal requirement to retain them in custody,” Davis-Marks said, adding that such criminals are treated in the same way as drug- or people-traffickers intercepted at sea. “We’d want to hand them off to a legal enforcement agency – we don’t look after felons,” he said.

The FCO was investigating the mention of Islamic law in relation to Somali pirates, when such law was not known to hold sway throughout the country. – Fairplay Homepage (Used with Permission)


Submissions for future editions:

Please submit articles for inclusion in next week’s edition using the following submit form at Blog Carnival. You are also welcome to email stories and photos to [email protected] for inclusion in future editions as well as suggest areas of coverage.


Previous Editions: As linked below or click on the tag ‘Maritime Monday’ for all gCaptain editions.

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