Join our crew and become one of the 105,908 members that receive our newsletter.

Maritime Monday 143

Total Views: 77
January 5, 2009

The following is posted by Fred Fry:

Welcome to this 143rd edition of Maritime Monday.

You can find Maritime Monday 93 here. (Published 14 January 2008)

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 Mike Gloistein who is serving on the British RRS JAMES CLARK ROSS (Royal Research ship) as it conducts an annual Antarctic Survey:

The RRS James Clark Ross (named after Admiral Sir James Clark Ross, R.N. ) was built by Swan Hunter Shipbuilders, Wallsend, UK and launched by H.M. The Queen on the 1st December 1990.

The vessel can steam at a steady two knots through level sea ice one metre thick. To assist passage through heavy pack ice a compressed air system rolls the ship from side to side freeing the passage. RRS James Clark Ross is equipped for geophysical studies, with a compressor bank to power a seismic air gun array, and large aft and starboard decks for scientific equipment deployed by aft and midships gantries. For biological studies, the vessel can deploy a wide range of sampling gear and benefits from modern underway instrumentation. The ship is designed with an extremely low noise signature to allow sensitive underwater acoustic equipment to operate effectively. – Link


* JCR alongside FIPASS, pic R Turner *


* Tom and Jim working on one of the engines. Pic R Turner *


* A colorful Aft Deck. *


* Loading waste drums from Bird Island. Pic R Turner *


* Looking out the front window at lunchtime today. (15 Dec 08) *


* Cargo work at Rothera *


* Cargo Tender loading fuel for Signy Base *


* Whale bones and whale catchers at King Edward Point. Pic J.McManmon *


* Christmas Lunch in the Crew Mess. Pic R Turner *


* Pre-dinner drinks in the Officer’s Bar. Pic R Turner *

His homepage can be found here.

Full size versions of the photos above and many more including photos of the ship’s bar, their Equator crossing Ceremony and various operations can be found at “Recent Daily Images from the 2008/9 Season” and “Daily Images Archive from the 2008/9 Season“.

You can also see the latest from the ship’s webcam at the bottom of this post.


This Week’s Items:

EagleSpeak has the “Latest ONI Worldwide Threat to Shipping Report (to Jan 2, 2009)” which gives a good example of how active things are in the Gulf of Aden. Also of interest is that a yacht had taken onboard an armed Yemen Coast Guard team which they later needed to ward off a suspected pirate attack.

Also be sure to check out EagleSpeak‘s weekly series “Sunday ship history: Merchant aircraft carriers” (This was originally posted by him in July, 2006)

gCaptain has “A New Solution To A Pressing Problem – Maritime Piracy” and “A Year In Shipping – A 2008 gCaptain Roundup” which includes a look at what to expect at gCaptain in 2009. Also, in case you missed it, “Pirate Attack Photos – M/V BISCAGLIA

Indian Express has “India saves abandoned Bangla migrants“. (Another copy of their video report uploaded here in case you can’t get it to load on their site.)

The Indian coast guard has saved more than 100 Bangladeshis who were left to die in the high seas, allegedly by the Thai Navy. The men were abandoned without food and water for close to a fortnight. The Indian coastguard found their damaged boat floating in the high seas off Andaman Islands. TIMES NOW accessed exclusive pictures of thier rescue and rehabilitation.

MarineBuzz has more with “Indian Coast Guard Rescues 102 Illegal Migrants Off Andaman and Nicobar Islands“.

The Monitor has “Fire Onboard MV Atlantic Vision“.

Space War has “Australia struggling with deep-sea rescues“.

Submariners in Australia face a slim possibility of deep-sea rescue because the government has been unable to create an adequate system, experts say.

BarentsObserver has “Sea trials of “Yury Dolgoruky” have been postponed“.

A high-ranking Navy source told news agency RIA Novosti that there still are issues with the placement of a nuclear reactor on board the “Yury Dolgoruky”. Sea trials have been postponed until 2009 so that Sevmash specialists could deal with the remaining problems.

BitterEnd has a look at the cost of some of Washington State’s Ferries that have been laid up awaiting disposal. There is a discussion in the comments about whether they should still be headed for scrapping in Mexico, especially considering the current price of scrap steel, which has reduced their value.

Cruise Bruise Blog has “The Science Behind Mystery Overboard Passengers And Crew“.

Where the cabin is located on a ship, plays a huge role in how much wind passengers will see on their balcony. While a passenger in the middle of the ship, on a lower deck may see no wind at all, a passenger with a suite at the top, at the stern or bow of the ship, could experience the force of a hurricane wind, on a rather calm day. has “Russian carrier allowed to conduct exercises in Greece“.

RIA Novosti has “Bad times ahead for Somali pirates“.

Another important change is that China has agreed to join the multinational force against the pirates. In early January, China’s best missile destroyers, Haikou and Wuhan, and the supply vessel Weishanhu, with over 800 sailors and 70 Marines on board, will reach the Gulf of Aden. They will coordinate their operation with the warships of other countries that are already in the Gulf or headed for it.

Some 1,200 Chinese merchant vessels pass by Somalia every year, and the pirates attack approximately 20% of them.

This statistic, if accurate, would mean that your chances of getting attacked by pirates is pretty good, even more so if you are a slow-moving, low-freeboard kind of target.

Scientific American has “Slippery Ships That Float on Air – Air-carpet hulls could sail faster, save fuel and cut emissions“.


AIR CAVITY SYSTEM: DK Group’s ACS pumps air about 56 feet (17 meters) below the waterline into subsurface cavities that form buoyant pockets that help reduce drag, allowing the craft to slip more easily through the sea surface. Image courtesy of DK Group

Lloyd’s List Newsroom Blog looks at ship operator cuts in container carrying capacity in “The real victims“.

The Journal of Commerce has “More than 400,000 TEUs idle as box ship rates tumble“.

The list of unemployed tonnage includes six ships of between 7,500 and 10,000 TEUs, and 19 between 5,000 and 7,500 TEUs.


Michelle Malkin has the latest vessel movement for the Free Gaza Organization in “Bon voyage, Jihad Cindy McKinney; Update: Israeli Navy turns back S.S. Moonbat“. Yes, that former Georgia Congresswoman (and Presidential Candidate) Cindy McKinney.

Casco Bay Boaters Blog has “Gloucester: 1 Dead, 1 Missing in Fishing Boat Accident“. The fishing boat sank.

iCommandant – Web Journal of Admiral Thad Allen has “The Challenge of Contracting Large Complex Projects — A Case Study of the Coast Guard’s Deepwater Program“.

MarEx Newsletter has “MCIA Launches New Safety Initiative in 2009“.

Maritime Casualty Investigation Association intends to keep an eye on safety, assist industries its members serve and to play a positive and active role in promoting the new IMO Casualty Code (as part of SOLAS) and providing an educational resource regarding duties and obligations under that code.

Professional Mariner has “Empty freighter strikes, damages Michigan swing bridge“. The ship is the MANISTEE. Boatnerd has details and photos of the ship here.


Inside the pilothouse. TZ

MarineBuzz has more details on the previously reported plan: “Red Sea to Give Life to Dead Sea“. How many other land areas are there that are lower than sea level that can be used to fight rising seas? (If it ever turns out that seas are rising.)

Haaretz has coverage of desperate propaganda in “Hamas announces formation of new naval coast guard unit“. Imagine the types of vessel inspections that they would carry out… (Found via An Unofficial Coast Guard Blog)

HAWSEPIPER: The Longest Climb has “A good long look, a hard lesson” as he acquires enough seatime to sit for his officer’s license. Now he just needs to get the remaining training requirements under his belt.

Information Dissemination has “SSBN Module Under Design” as the UK plans to use US-made missile compartments for their next generation of U.S. and U.K. SSBNs.

NY TUGMASTER’S WEBLOG has “No Really, This is No S**t“. (Found via Kennebec Captain)

The difference between a sea story and a fairy tale is said to be that a fairy tale always starts with “Once upon a time”, and a sea story always begins with “No really, this is no s**t”. It’s no secret that fishermen are known to exaggerate just a bit when talking about the one that got away, the tugboatman is somewhat different in that although the story sounds too impossible to be true, in many cases it’s as true as a carpenter’s square.

His post reminds me of this ‘towboat nightmare’. At least they have photographic proof to back up their sea story, which is ggod because this has to be one of the must unbelievable stories out there.

Daily Tech has “Sea Ice Ends Year at Same Level as 1979“.


The Times of Malta has coverage of Italy’s decision to quickly send back migrants that arrive on their shores illegally in “Italy not re-inventing the wheel – Foreign Affairs Ministry“.

Italy was not re-inventing the wheel when it decided to deport all immigrants reaching its shores as from next week, a spokesman for the Foreign Affairs Minister in Malta said.

As a spell of good weather led to over 2,000 immigrants landing in the Italian island of Lampedusa over the past few days, the Italian government announced yesterday that, come Tuesday, it will send back illegal immigrants who arrive on its shores.

Reuters reported that 38 Egyptians will be the first group to be flown to Cairo under the new plan announced by Italy’s right-wing government, which, since coming to power in May, has made the fight against illegal immigration a top priority.


Dinghies have become more popular than boats to transport illegal immigrants… Some of the group of 139 immigrants who met with difficulties while on a large dinghy and brought to Malta by the AFM on Monday.

Sydney Morning Herald has the latest anti-pirate actions taken by the French Navy in “France ‘foils two Somali pirate attacks, holds 19’“.

A French warship foiled attempts by Somalian pirates in the Gulf of Aden to seize two cargo vessels and intercepted 19 people, the French president’s office said.

“Three days after a French vessel thwarted an attack on a Panamanian cargo ship” the frigate Jean de Vienne conducted a “decisive action” against “two new attacks” it said in a statement.”The 19 Somali pirates who tried to seize the two boats were intercepted,” it added, saying they carried weapons, ammunition and material for boarding ships. “They will be transferred to the Somali authorities,” it added.


OK, without getting into the issue of why these guys keep ending up free back in Somalia, why do they have to drop them off so quickly? Why not keep them locked up in a brig for a couple weeks first? This way there is a little time to interrogate them and keep them out of action. These two captures brings the French total for this year up to 27 that we know of. Their first capture of the year is posted on my blog here: “Pirate Attack Photo – French Capture Eight Pirates

US Naval Institute Blog has a question concerning warships/the Navy running on technology that’s a decade old in “How Would You Describe?“. I guess part of the answer depends on what kind of equipment the enemy has access to.

Freaque Waves has “Freaque wave non believers.

Shirlaw News Group has “Man is found a mile offshore after two hour search” alive. He was walking along what he thought was the shoreline until the tide came in.

National Council of Resistance of Iran has “Deployment of the Iranian regime’s IRGC in the Port of Assab in Eritrea“. (Found via Naval Open Source INTelligence)

SAILORS, MARINERS & WARRIORS LEAGUE has “Texas Company Claims Steel Cargo On Ship Of Va. Beach“.

Barna’s “in rem” suit, filed Dec. 22 against the steel in Norfolk federal court, seeks to recoup the $545,000 in unpaid chartering fees the vessel has accumulated waiting. An “in rem” lawsuit is one filed against an inanimate object.

Breakbulk Industry News has “Galveston regroups from Hurricane Ike“.

Cernak vividly remembers Gary LaGrange, executive director of the Port of New Orleans, saying about 10 days after Hurricane Katrina hit that he’d realized that a hurricane plan is “only paper” and that no matter how thorough it seems or how proud of it you are, you will not understand the task until you’ve been through it.

Cernak didn’t really understand that remark at the time, he said, but he surely does now. You may believe that your plan is your “path out,” Cernak said, “but it really isn’t.” All ports plan for hurricanes, but at the end of the day no, single document will lead straight out of the mess. Every storm is different, and so is every recovery.

Bob Couttie’s Maritime Accident Casebook has “SOSY09: Listening Post For Seafarers“.

We talked about 2009 as Seafarer Ownership of Safety year, SOSY09, on 31st December 2008, so let’s kick off 1st January 2009 by talking to seafarers. We want to hear from you, your crewmates and your seafarer buddies on other ships. Not just officers, but ABs, too.

THE ISLOMANIAC has “VR Panorama of Marlon Brando’s Island“. The full-screen view is very impressive.

Robin Storm – In Search of Severe Weather has “Oscillation Rules as the Pacific Cools“.

Sea * Fever has “FotoFriday: Barbara Mensch’s Photographs of Our Lost Maritime Heritage“.

The Stupid Shall Be Punished has “SSBN CO Relieved For Cause“. Lots of talk in the post’s comments.

Hellenic Shipping News has “Nigerian government to phase-out single hull vessels by 2010“.

TimesOnline has “The Rise of the Urban Seagull“. Think of Hitchcock’s movie ‘The Birds’.

Never Sea Land has an update on the Vendee Globe solo around the world race as half the racers have had to retire due to vessel failure in “50%“. They still have a long way to go.

The Sydney Morning Herald has the latest on Sea Shepherd’s vessel STEVE IRWIN as it heads back to Australia or New Zealand to refuel in “Close ports to terror ship: whaling body“. How about welcoming them with a couple port-state inspectors instead? Or how about a vessel arrest warrant?

YouTube has the tugboat accident video “Melbourne Tug Boat Tips Over Towing Ship and Man Overboard“. Note the open hatch and note how quickly that hatch becomes a threat to the ship.

melbourne tug boat tips over towing ship and man overboard


Haight’s Maritime Items has:

Australia – summary of UN trade sanctions – The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) issued a notice reminding the maritime community of the various international trade sanctions that have been approved by the United Nations Security Council. These sanctions relate to Cote d’Ivoire, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Iran, Iraq, Lebanon, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Somalia, Sudan, Al-Qaida, and the Taliban. Marine Notice 21/2008 (12/23/08). – Dennis Bryant Holland & Knight homepage (Used with Permission)


UK – mariner sentenced for fraudulent discharge book – The UK Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) issued a press notice stating that a mariner was sentenced to 150 hours of community service and court costs of £2,530 after pleading guilty to use of a fraudulent discharge book in an attempt to obtain documentation from the MCA. (1/2/08). – Dennis Bryant Holland & Knight homepage (Used with Permission)

Fairplay Daily News has:

Chennai boxes pile up – Container traffic to and from the port of Chennai on India’s East Coast has come to a standstill in the wake of an “indefinite” strike by truck drivers.

Around 5,000 trucks have gone off duty, protesting extensive delays in repairs to badly damaged roads that connect Chennai and Ennore.

Industry sources reported that as of 24 December, there were over 6,400 containers – 4,013 import boxes and 2,393 exports boxes – at the Chennai Container Terminal, versus its normal inventory of around 3,000 boxes.

Port sources warned that if the strike is not quickly resolved, the terminal operator could find it difficult to handle vessels, due to non-availability of terminal space. – Fairplay Homepage (Used with Permission)


LNG spot rates log dismal 2008 – GLOBAL LNG spot prices reached unprecedented lows in 2008 amid a sharp decline in global demand, with US gas import volumes reportedly dropping by more than a half.

By mid-2008, LNG demand dropped abruptly as the global downturn unfolded, London’s Financial Times newspaper reported today, leaving LNG producers struggling to cope with huge running costs.

Upstream gas companies and LNG exporters in Qatar, Algeria and Trinidad & Tobago were forced to keep their infrastructure running, even at low prices, because restart costs in the sector are prohibitive, the FT added.

Spot prices for LNG are likely to remain on unprecedented lows over the coming month, analysts told the FT.

In Asia, LNG imports to India are forecast to drop sharply because of its manufacturing slowdown, particularly in the steel sector. Delhi data indicated that India’s LNG imports were up a modest 3.4% year on year, reaching 4.87M tonnes over April-October 2008. – 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.


RRS James Clark Ross Research Ship Webcam

The webcam on RRS James Clark Ross is situated on the Bridge. It generally looks forward, but if something of particular interest is going on, it may be moved to look aft or to either side. The Radio Officers onboard usually add a small blurb containing information about where the ship is what it is doing. This is a particularly interesting webcam as (when not on long sea passages) the scenery changes regularly. Spectacular sunrises/sunsets, stunning Antarctic vistas and the occasional Southern Ocean storm can all be seen from this camera! It updates approximately once every hour during daylight hours.

Click here for a map and description of the image below.


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

1234567891011121314151617181920212223242526272829303132333435363738394041424344454647484950515253545556575859606162636465666768697071727374757677787980818283848586878889909192939495969798gCaptain Editions: 99100101102103104105106107108109110111112113114115116117118119120121122123123a124125126127128129130131132133134135136137138139140141142 – 143


Unlock Exclusive Insights Today!

Join the gCaptain Club for curated content, insider opinions, and vibrant community discussions.

Sign Up
Back to Main
polygon icon polygon icon

Why Join the gCaptain Club?

Access exclusive insights, engage in vibrant discussions, and gain perspectives from our CEO.

Sign Up


Maritime and offshore news trusted by our 105,908 members delivered daily straight to your inbox.

Join Our Crew

Join the 105,908 members that receive our newsletter.