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Maritime Monday 158

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April 20, 2009

The following is posted by Fred Fry:

Welcome to this 158th edition of Maritime Monday.

You can find Maritime Monday 108 here. (Published 28 April 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 Safmarine:


  • 1946 : South African Marine Corporation Limited (Safmarine in short) was formed by American ship owners and South African industrialists. Control of the company was in the hands of US shareholders.
  • 1947 : First owned ship ‘Constantia’ arrived at South African ports from the United States.
  • 1954 : Shareholding control was acquired by South Africa’s Industrial Development Corporation (IDC).
  • 1984 : A new holding company, Safmarine & Rennies Holdings Limited (Safren) was formed, with South African life assurer Old Mutual emerging as the major shareholder.
  • 1991 : A strategic 49 percent shareholding in a Belgian shipping line was acquired, thereby affording an entry to the international shipping arena.
  • 1996 : Full ownership of the Belgian Shipping line finalised, thereby inheriting more than a century of shipping expertise. Safmarine Container lines NV was registered in Belgium.
  • 1999 : The Danish A.P. Moller-Maersk Group acquired the liner shipping interests and the trading name Safmarine.
  • 2002 : The Group acquired the liner shipping and MPV (multi-purpose vessel) interests of Torm Lines, integrating the MPV/breakbulk (non-containerised cargo) activities into the Safmarine brand.
  • TODAY : Safmarine Container Lines is trading under a single global brand name – Safmarine. – LINK






* Stuffing a car Strapped onto a loading rack *



Their homepage can be found here.


This Week’s Items:

EagleSpeak has “USNS Comfort Delivers Medical Care, Sign of U.S. Commitment to Haiti“.

Also be sure to check out EagleSpeak‘s weekly series “Sunday Ship History: The Last American Pirate Trial?

gCaptain has “Investigation into Sinking of M/V Explorer – Report” faulting the Captain.


gCaptain also has video: “Clinton Unveils Initiative to Combat Piracy“. I wonder if she is following instructions from the White House or is she playing stupid on her own. See my comments on her plan to fight piracy linked below.

PajamasMedia has “It’s Not Over: What About the Rest of the Hostages in Somalia?“.

U.S. Navy SEAL snipers set Captain Phillips free. Three of the four pirates who held the American at gunpoint adrift in a life raft are now dead. The fourth pirate, allegedly negotiating with the FBI from somewhere else, is in U.S. custody. It’s a storybook ending — sort of. The real ending doesn’t come until the 200 mariners still being held hostage in Somalia’s lawless ports are set free.

Now is the time for action. President Obama should take command and control of the situation and spearhead a multinational operation to free these men and women — victims first and foremost of piracy, but also now victims of international inertia.

CSPAN has video of a speech by Former Commander of the U.S. Naval Forces Central Command (CENTCOM) & the U.S. 5th Fleet Vice Admiral Kevin J. Cosgriff (Ret.) on “Combating Piracy off the Somali Coast“. (Direct Video link here)

Tims Times has ‘cultured’ Europeans in “Blockade“.




Nothing new here other than them planning to act dangerously in advance!

The Swedish Armed Forces confirms that they are sending three ships to patrol off Somalia as of May.

Three Swedish Armed Forces vessels, the corvettes HMS Malmö and HMS Stockholm plus support ship HMS Trossö, with a total of 152 crew and maintenance personnel, are to escort and protect UN food shipments against pirates who seize ships and demand large ransoms to release the crew and cargo.

Hot Air has “NATO forces let captured pirates go“.

Maybe they’ll wait until NATO comes back with a search warrant, or perhaps a social worker to see whether the pirates could use some public assistance, too. Sweden was tougher on The Pirate Bay this week than NATO was on actual pirates.

ABC News (Australia) has “Sea Shepherd eyes new ship“.

The Times of Malta has “Malta, Italy row over migrants“.

A stand-off between Italy and Malta over a group of rescued illegal migrants escalated into a full-blown political dispute yesterday as the two countries traded accusations of failure to live up to their international obligations.

The group of 154 migrants were rescued from two separate boats by a Turkish cargo ship near Lampedusa in an operation coordinated by the Armed Forces of Malta.


Next time they should claim that they are pirates. They’ll probably get better treatment.

Radio Netherlands has an update on the Malta-Italy migrant row with “Rome agrees to accept stranded migrants“.

English Russia has a tour of a Typhoon with “World’s Biggest Submarine [with pics]” including a photo of the submarine’s wading pool.


English Russia also has “Russian Navy Comics“.


The Washington Times has “EXCLUSIVE: U.S. failed to use best radar for N. Korea missile“.

Professional Mariner has “Historic collisions and the law – Part 2“.

Kings Point Waterfront has “ABC News and Recognition“.

NY TUGMASTER’S WEBLOG has “Helo Evacuations“.

On my blog, Fred Fry International , I mock the Obama Administration’s move to fight piracy with: “Clinton: “new diplomatic efforts to freeze the pirates’ assets”“.

In case you have not ready it already, I also have posted “MAERSK ALABAMA – First Person Account of the Pirate Attack“.

Just to reiterate the most important points:

– Have a well fortified location with food and water supply.
– Kill all the lights.
– Leave the alarms going, the noise helped cover our movements through the house.
– Flashlights and radios are very handy, as well as the sound-powered phone.

Congressman Mike Coffman (R-Colorado) has “Coffman Wants U.S. Military on Merchant Ships“.

The Washington Post has an editorial: “Why We Should Get Rid of West Point“.

After covering the U.S. military for nearly two decades, I’ve concluded that graduates of the service academies don’t stand out compared to other officers. Yet producing them is more than twice as expensive as taking in graduates of civilian schools ($300,000 per West Point product vs. $130,000 for ROTC student).

MarineBuzz has “Weekend Study: DIIS Brief on Sea Routes through Arctic Ocean” and “General Elections 2009: Indian Islands Complete Polling“.

Puget Sound Maritime has “Northwest biodiesel makers may lose their biggest customer: Washington State Ferries“.

Naval Open Source INTelligence has “China sends more ships to patrol territorial waters“.

Lighthouse News has “Lighthouse Keepers Wanted in Michigan“. No you don’t get a salary. In one of the cases, you won’t get electricity or indoor plumbing either. But, if you want to be a lighthouse keeper, the opportunity is there.

Casco Bay Boaters Blog has “Portlander Files Claim to Sunken Treasure ” off Cape Cod.

The Old Salt Blog has “The First Great Ocean Liner – Brunel’s SS Great Britain.

After being scuttled in the Falklands in 1937, she was salvaged in 1970, restored and put on display in the drydock in which she was built in Bristol. She is now the oldest surviving passenger liner and also, according to some, the most haunted ship in Britain.

Information Dissemination has “Discussing Asymmetric Maritime Threats“. At some point anti-pirate devices will be effectively deployed against Sea Shepherd and GreenPeace. They should be paying attention.

US Naval Institute Blog has “14 April 1912; so paves the way for an International Ice Patrol” as they remember the sinking of the TITANIC.

AMVER Blog has more TITANIC sinking fallout with “97 Years Ago“.

Houston Ship Pilot/Photographer OneEighteen has the photo: “Three Meetings – Three“.



Deep Water Writing has lessons learned when the ship’s incinerator catches fire in “From me at sea: Smoke“.

There is nothing good about seeing smoke at sea unless its haze gray and emanating from your engine’s exhaust stack.

It has just the opposite affect of a warm and bright wood fire; it terrifies you and fills your veins with a rush of adrenaline that is hard to find in what is normally such a safe and secure world. The awareness that the vessel is alone, absolutely isolated from all external help for hundreds of miles in every direction sharpens the sense of urgency and the room for error shrinks with every second that the fire is able to breathe and grow.

Towmasters: the Master of Towing Vessels Assoc. Forum has “Size Does Matter“. That would be the size of the seafarer.

Danger Room has “Why Gates Kept the Giant Golf Ball from Spying on Kim’s Missile“.

‘blog’ has the photo “Silja Symphony from Mariella’s “sun deck”“.

CDR Salamander has a photo illustration of the difference: “USNS vs. USN“. Lots of interesting comments as well.

The Pilot Boat has signaling equipment that you probably did not know about in “Danish Butter Cookies“.

Hellenic Shipping News has “Singamas sees container demand reviving“.

Singamas Container Holdings Ltd, the world’s second-biggest maker of cargo boxes, said it has received more customers enquiries, indicating that demand may be recovering after it plunged last year. The decline in Shanghai port’s container traffic appears to have slowed and Singapore showed increased volumes in March from a month ago, Teo Siong Seng, chief executive officer of Singamas, said yesterday. Singapore and Shanghai are the world’s two busiest container ports.

Shipgaz News has “Fire on Queen of Scandinavia – passengers evacuated“.

Freaque Waves has “Freaque wave at the Volvo Ocean Race“.

BarentsObserver has “Poachers bribing border guard staff“.

Modern Day Pirate Tales has “A Somali “pirate” threatens to sue Germany“.

The ongoing issue of how to effectively prosecute those individuals suspected of having committed piracy on the high seas has had an odd twist added to things. According to, a Somali identified as Ali Mohamed A.D. had his lawyer file a lawsuit in Germany on Tuesday for, “what he called his inhumane treatment since being handed over to Kenyan authorities”, according to court documents. His lawyer, Oliver Wallasch, is said to be seeking 10,000 Euros ($13,300 US) from the German government for damages incurred after his transfer to Kenya.

Sea * Fever has “On Your Mark, Get Set, Slow! (The 2009 Great Turtle Race)“.

BitterEnd has Government Bias against Americans with “Boater fined $5K by Homeland Security“. Why aren’t illegal aliens fined $5,000 for breaking border-crossing procedures? Why aren’t they fined $2,000 for bringing in food illegally? I had seen one Agriculture Agent explain on TV that foreign nationals that do not understand English are not fined because the law excuses them! Good luck trying that in another country. Anyway, this double standard treatment is just B.S. and it is all a result of Government Officials demanding special treatment for certain groups. Well, guess who is left to pick on…..

The Stupid Shall Be Punished has British “Submarine Food Slang” and the comments are full of the American version. has “WWII fast patrol boat Garth on show at the Beale Park Boat Show“.

Springbored’s Springboard has “Stop Domestic Disengagement! Or-How Port Calls Might Appease Navy Bean-Counters:” as the US Navy adapts to budget cutbacks by reducing domestic port calls including at ‘Fleet Weeks’.

Panbo has “Mandated AIS, an aid to pirates?

Inside GNSS has “Whither Galileo, and Why?

Ultimately, many of these considerations will not matter, because the main driver for building Galileo has been European desire — and, arguably, need — for an independent GNSS under its control to secure a critical infrastructure for its 27 member states.

If sovereignty is Galileo’s trump card, it can be played at any time, and when the system is here and fully operational, that will be soon enough.

They come from the Government. They are here to help you…

IceNews has “Norway signs on to the EU’s Galileo project“.

59° 56′ N has “Play Shipping: The Game“.

Maritime Compass has “U.S. WWII records“.

Mr. Boat Blog has video of the world’s fastest sea sled, the “SeaBob“. Appears to work underwater for as long as you can hold your breath!

YouTube has video of a ship “Accident in Guayaquil“. It is the second half of the video where it gets real interesting.


Fairplay Daily News has:

Help at hand for Ukraine stink ship – UKRAINIAN border guards today agreed to help the crew to repair the refrigerated vessel Beriks and supply them with food and water.

The Ukrainian-flagged ship has been marooned at sea since it left the Georgian port of Poti in December last year. Ukrainian port authorities have refused the vessel access because it is carrying 200 tonnes of rotting Brazilian and Chinese meat products. The ship’s refrigerating machinery broke down.

The stench from Beriks has been viewed as a serious environmental hazard and officials have ordered that the ship keep at least 20km from the coast. It has been anchored that distance from Kerchensky’s port for about two weeks.

Oleg Nyshpor, the head of the Azovo-Black Sea border guard, said his officers would be helping to repair the ship and providing the crew with food and water.

Irina Goryunova of the local ecological inspector’s office told reporters that it had reached agreement with the owner of Beriks that the meat would not be unloaded and that it would leave Ukrainian waters once repairs are completed. She added that she had no objections to this being carried out at Kerchensky’s port. – Fairplay Homepage (Used with Permission)


Fewer box ships idled – THE NUMBER of inactive box ships has fallen for the first time in six months, according to the container shipping consultancy AXS-Alphaliner.

The consultancy said 486 ships totalling 1.31M teu – equivalent to 10.4% of the global fleet – is now laid up.

Some larger box ships are returning to service for the start of the peak summer season, causing some smaller ships to be laid off, Alphaliner explained. Also, service loops suspended over recent months are being restarted.

Further, bigger vessels are being used in other services, which has cut the number of very large container ships laid up from 23 to 10, Alphaliner pointed out.

The company forecast that idle box tonnage will continue to fall in coming months, but once the cargo peak is finished in October, lay-ups are expected to rise again to exceed 2M teu. That spike would continue to more than 3M teu over the next nine months unless overall trade picks up and volumes increase. – 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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