Maritime Monday 154

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March 23, 2009

The following is posted by Fred Fry:

Welcome to this 154th edition of Maritime Monday.

You can find Maritime Monday 104 here. (Published 31 March 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 American Canadian Caribbean Line:

Family operated for over 40 years American Canadian Caribbean Line of Warren, Rhode Island is the brainchild of shipbuilder, Capt. Luther H. Blount (1916-2006). In the 1950’s, in order to experience a small ship cruise on the historic Northeastern waterways, you had to own your own yacht or have a friend who did. Luther Blount owned such a yacht and invited many friends to join him and his young family. It evolved into a business as guests started to multiply, requesting to contribute to the cost and to bring friends of their own. What started first as family swordfishing vacations to New England and the Canadian Maritimes has developed into one of the most renowned niche cruise companies that has defined the industry. Capt. Blounts daughter Nancy now manageges the cruise line with the assistance of the Blount Executive Team that includes her sisters Julie and Marcia. They also oversea the shipyard and other family interests.

ACCL shallow draft vessels have a retractable pilot house and are able to navigate shallow coastal waters and under the low bridges of historic inland waterways including the Erie Canal and Chicago Sanitary & Ship Canal.




* “Grande Caribe bow landing in shallow tropical waters of the Bahamas. Small ships can access waters larger cruise ships simply can not.” *


* “ACCL’s exclusive bow ramp offers off-the-beaten path exploration in places only accessible by small ship.” *


* “Sunset in a hidden shallow Canadian cove, ACCL small ships can go where the big ships simply can not. ” *


* ACCL Cruise Map *

Their homepage can be found here.


This Week’s Items:

EagleSpeak has “Somali Pirates: UN Chief Says Piracy Will Continue Until Somalia Is Fixed“. We can thank former President Clinton for ending the last attempt to fix the country.

Also be sure to check out EagleSpeak‘s weekly series “Sunday Ship History: Operation Highjump

gCaptain has “15 Incredible Shipyard Photos and Pictures” and “Hawaii Super Ferry Ceases Operations – Court Ruling“.

The Maritime Executive has more on the Superferry mess with “Striking a Balance: A Mixed Message in Hawaii“.

To say that the operators had the best of intentions with the new service would be an understatement. I can say this with confidence, having spent almost three hours with John F. Lehman, the Superferry’s biggest proponent and investor, more than two years ago. In an exclusive interview that ran in our March 2007 print edition, Lehman said, “All of the abandoned farms, family farms, and local agriculture that have disappeared because there’s no inter-island transport are going to come back. It’s hard to imagine it, but this is one of the richest states in the union – three full growing seasons, and still they import 90% of their food.” Way ahead of his time, apparently, Lehman also talked about the ferry’s payload that could be configured to carry up to 28 full-size trucks, giving new meaning to the Maritime Administration’s popular buzzword, “shortsea shipping.”


gCaptain also has US Coast Guard clarification on future issuance of full-size Merchant Marine licenses as they prepare to switch to issuing Consolidated Merchant Mariner Credentials (MMC) instead of the currently issued documents: “Merchant Mariner Credentials and Licenses“. The issue is still open concerning full-size licenses, which if continued would be an optional additional document for the Mariner’s own records.

NY TUGMASTER’S WEBLOG comments on the license issue with “The New and Improved Merchant Mariner’s Credential“.

Master of Towing Vessels Association Forum has “More on the MMC Final Rule“.

As I note in the gCaptain post, I think the Coast Guard will in the end find a way to continue issuing full-size licenses, provided that the Coast Guard takes the position that this is something that they want to do.


Deep Water Writing has RORO “Lay Up“.

Shipgaz has “Ro-pax vessels put for sale“.

Finnlines will probably put five of their ro-pax vessels for sale. Rumours tell that the intention is to sell Finnsailor and Translubeca, but also Finnarrow, Transeuropa and Finntrader may be disposed off. This is regarded quite surprising, as Finnlines so far has cut capacity mainly by redelivering chartered vessels to their owners.

Casco Bay Boaters Blog has all you ever wanted to know (and more) about how Canada manages their catch of lobster until the time when people around the world order them in “A Tale of Two Tails: High End vs. Low End Lobster“. Maine is only now looking at how to conduct a similar operation, in an attempt to insulate the lobster industry against crashes in market prices.

Times of Malta has news of cooperation in the rescue of refugees fleeing Africa in “Malta, Libya, reach search and rescue agreement“.

The MoU provides that both countries coordinate, cooperate and support each other for search and rescue operations within their respective search and rescue regions (SRRs). Both sides also agreed to authorize their Rescue Coordination Centre to request assistance via the rescue centre of the other country and to provide all information on the distress situation in their respective Search and Rescue Region.

BitterEnd has the details with “Name that type of sailing vessel“.

IceNews has “Denmark to back Greenland over whaling” and “Scandinavian nations not keen on seal hunting ban“.

Freaque Waves has two recreational death statistics in “Boat Smarts“.

SAILORS, MARINERS & WARRIORS LEAGUE has the story and photos: “South Africa Seizes Taiwanese Shark Fishing Boat“.

South African authorities have seized a Taiwanese fishing boat accused of violating limits on shark fishing. Inspectors confiscated 1.6 tons of dried shark fins from the vessel and said it was “the biggest alleged illegal consignment during recent years.” The boat’s permit was valid for just 220 pounds (100 kilograms) of shark fins.

Hell in a Handbasket has Japan’s ‘helicopter-carrying destroyer’ in: “NOT An Aircraft Carrier!


Helsingin Sanomat has “Cargo traffic via Finnish ports expected to fall by up to third – Already more than half of cargo-handling staff are subject to temporary lay-offs; Port of Hamina particularly badly hit“. Guess I was right not to bother looking for work while on vacation in Finland.

Strategy Page has “North Korean Rust Buckets Take Care Of Business“.

Meanwhile, all VOIs (Vessels of Interest) have become a seagoing version of the usual suspects. The same ships keep showing up again and again when the navy, coast guard or port authorities go looking for bad behavior.

BarentsObserver has “Submarine scrapper sued“.

Rosatom claims Zvezdockha shipyard in Severodvinsk have sold scrap metal from dismantled submarines and by that received additional income that should have been deposited in a special account and used for financing the dismantling program. The income in questions comes from scrap metal sales in 2007 and 2008.

Bob Couttie’s Maritime Accident Casebook has “Lifeboat Hooks “real progress”“.

iCommandant – Web Journal of Admiral Thad Allen endorses an editorial calling for more “Fishing Vessel Safety“.

MarineBuzz has “Weekend View: Undersea Volcano Eruption Off Tonga Coast” and “Good Maintenance Onboard Ships: Free E-Book by ClassNK“.

Tugster has more photos of the PEKING with “Mystery Tow 2“.

US Navy has “Suspected Pirates Apprehended, Released in the Gulf of Aden“. They were released due to a lack of evidence. And now the released pirates will tell the others what they need to do if cornered by the US Navy.

Lloyd’s List has “Downturn leading to improved prospects for ship safety“.

THE GLOBAL shipping downturn is leading to a reduction in maritime accidents and improved prospects for safety at sea, according to the International Union of Marine Insurance.

Lloyd’s List Newsroom Blog looks at the emerging opportunities in the shipping industry as more ships get laid up and head for scrapping in “Rich pickings“.

Shirlaw News Group has “Ship collides with yacht in fog in the English Channel“.

Maritime Reporter has the photo: “NASA Image: Ship Tracks“.

The Drawn Cutlass has “Des Newton, 1941-2009: R.I.P.” He created ships in bottles. (Found via Instapundit)


National Geographic has for it’s 18 March 2009 ‘Photo of the day’Right Whales Swimming“.


Maritime Information Centre has “China to buy up cancelled newbuildings“.

An Unofficial Coast Guard Blog has “the most complete list of links to Coast Guard related websites anywhere on the net“.

The New York Times asks “Is Antarctica Getting Too Popular?” My opinion is no. It is a whole continent we’re talking about after all. That said, if you do plan to go down there, be sure you first know how far away from everything you will be. Because successfully abandoning ship is only the first of your problems, if you happen to run into trouble.

Puget Sound Maritime has “Seattle Times special report on Alaska Ranger sinking“.

Over the years, some of the Japanese fish masters physically assaulted some of the company’s American crewmen, repeatedly violated policies that prohibit shipboard drinking and helped oust two American skippers who defied their directives, the former crew members say. Such conduct increased the risks facing the Fishing Company of Alaska crews, who toil in an industry with the highest death rate in the U.S.

Be sure to follow the link and read the full story which goes into great detail not only of the accident but also into unbelievable behavior on these fishing boats by the Japanese ‘fish masters’.

Puget Sound Maritime also has “Wawona demolition video“.

Information Dissemination has “April Will Test the Success of the Somali Piracy Fight“.

Marine Log has posted their March Edition online.


Terra Daily has “British-built robotic fish to detect pollution“.

A shoal of robotic fish which can detect pollution in the water are set to released into the sea off Spain, British scientists said Thursday.

Japan Probe has “Korean drycleaners want Americans to care about Dokdo“. That would be the Dokdo Islands, also known as Takeshima by the Japanese and the Liancourt Rocks by everyone else. The islands are claimed and held by Korea, but also actively claimed by the Japanese. As you can see from the photo, there is not much there. The real fight is over what is in the water and seabed. (More details at Wikipedia)


Kennebec Captain has a great video news report on laid up ships with “Philippine Shipping Slowdown“. Interesting how the crew keeps busy as well as has the unusual opportunity to visit their homes from work.

HAWSEPIPER: The Longest Climb has photos of his tank-barge and tug in “la Vida Nostra“.

Pinoy Maritime has “Your Responsibilities as an Officer of the Watch“. Here is a condensed version that I lived by:

– Don’t hit anything
– Don’t run aground
– Don’t fall asleep
– Don’t panic
– Don’t spill
– Don’t piss off the Captain

If you can manage this then you’re pretty safe.

Lighthouse News has “Half a Million For What?“.

In a surprisingly active bidding war, the Frying Pan Shoals Light Tower recently sold for $515,000 dollars. That’s more than half a million big ones. And what did the winning bidder get? A decrepit tower out in the middle of nowhere. Okay, so it’s surrounded by water, as it’s 35 miles out to sea.

The tower is located 35 miles off the mouth of the Cape Fear River in North Carolina.

Go read the rest of the story to find out what is planned for the former light tower, provided a cargoship does not run over it.

Springbored’s Springboard has “South China Sea Getting Crowded?” as the French Navy makes an appearance.

English Russia has photos of “Russian Lake Baikal“.

US Naval Institute Blog has the story and photos: “The Crucible: USS Franklin – 19 March 1945” Noting that ‘The USS Franklin was the most heavily damaged carrier of any action in WW2’. Damage control is a good skill to have. Even on Merchant vessels.

IMC Brokers has “New tug for Murmansk oil-tankers“.

CDR Salamander has WWII US submarine patrol reports for his weekly edition of Fullbore Friday.

Hellenic Shipping News has “Deep Water Oil Drilling Scaled Back, May Tighten Crude Supplies“.

Sea * Fever has “9 Marine Energy Projects That Could Save The Planet“.

Cruise Bruise has “RCCL Crime Stats Are So Vast Providing Them To A Judge Is A “Burden”“.

Breakbulk Industry News has “Halifax dockers take wage freeze” for one year as part of a three year contract.

Professional Mariner has “Film Review: SS United States: Lady in Waiting“.

Theo Spark has a photo and asks “What’s this?

Greenpeace has “Saving Norway’s cold water corals“.

The Horse’s Mouth has a video lesson: “The Physics Of Sailing.” and provides a neat simple paper example that everyone can do.

Journal of Commerce has “DP World Takes Over Port of Algiers“.

LiveLeak has video “Russian sailing vessel “Nadezhda” (Hope) – view from one of it’s mast – 56.4 metres above sea level.“.


Fairplay Daily News has:

Oz tobacco smuggler in record fine – A SYDNEY man who tried to smuggle four separate shipments of illegal tobacco and cigarettes through Port Botany has been handed a record fine by the New South Wales Supreme Court.

Ramez Nabhan was penalised over A$11.4M ($7.7M) for illegally importing 12,592kg of tobacco and more than one million cigarettes in sea cargo consignments from China and Indonesia in late 2006/early 2007.

After being inspected at the Sydney Container Examination Facility, the shipments were found to contain loose leaf and manufactured tobacco and concealed cigarettes.

Customs and Border Protection charged Nabhan with four counts of smuggling goods and four counts of evading payment of duty.

He was ordered to pay a penalty of A$8,100,000 plus A$3,395,709 in reparation to the Commonwealth, as well as court costs. – 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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