Maritime Monday 175

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August 17, 2009

The following is posted by Fred Fry:

Welcome to this 175th edition of Maritime Monday.

You can find Maritime Monday 125 here. (Published 1 September 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 T&T Shipbuilding and Repair:


On July 31st 2009, some fifty (50) Shipbuilding and Repair (S&R) Mentees participated in a pre-arranged visit to one of the leading Shipyards located in Port of Spain. The Mentees witnessed their operations and to also learned more about the wide range of shipyard related services offered to vessels undergoing repairs on their 1,800 Ton Dry Dock.

The T&T Shipbuilding and Repair Cluster is a Government of Trinidad and Tobago’s (GoTT) initiative to promote the Shipbuilding and Repair sector and to also help diversify the country from the energy sector. Visit the S&R Website for more information or call Maritime Preservation Ltd. at 625-2927.

This year’s sponsors included Alston’s Shipping Limited (ANSA McAl Group), Wartsila Caribbean Inc, and William Marine Limited.


* Mentees view first hand, the operations of the Slipway where the OSV “Native Pride” (built 1976) was undergoing repairs at Maritime Preservation Shipyard. *


* S&R Mentees look at the Offshore Supply Vessel (OSV) “Native Pride” (built 1976) having received a new paint job at Maritime Preservation Shipyard. *


* Mentees view first hand, the operations of the on-site Electrical Department. *


* On board the Coloured Fin owned Tug “Temeraire” where S&R Mentees pose by the Norwich 8400 Static Pull – 80 Ton Main Winch. *

The shipyard’s homepage can be found here.


This Week’s Items:

EagleSpeak has “MV Arctic Sea: The Mystery Continues“. There are other posts concerning the vessel scattered below.

Also be sure to check out EagleSpeak‘s weekly series “Sunday Ship History: The Lighthouse Joke

gCaptain has “Casualty Outlook” covering the missing ARCTIC SEA, the LANGELAND and PRINCESS ASHIKA sinkings and the KARIN SCHEPERS grounding.

Flags of Convenience asks “Arctic Sea repainted and sold? A Phantom?” as is sometimes the fate of ships hijacked in Asia.

AFP has “Finland denies missing ship carries nuclear material“.

But he dismissed as “stupid rumours” reports in British and Finnish newspapers that the ship could be carrying a “secret” nuclear cargo that could explain why it was attacked on the Baltic Sea before vanishing.

“Some fireman for some reason thought that there might be some radioactivity involved in this shipment and that was a very stupid idea. There was no basis for that,” Laaksonen told AFP.

Sorry Mr. Laaksonen, but it is never s stupid idea to wonder if anything coming from Russia might be radioactive. The former Soviet Union has radioactive material scattered everywhere (In addition to covering Europe in fallout from Chernobyl). Only recently has the International community collected most of their Nuclear-powered lighthouse generators, because the Russians were too cheap to do it themselves. So, if it was not nuclear-related material, what then? Missiles? Pretty convenient that those firemen just happened to pick this vessel. Just like the hijackers somehow also picked this vessel…

US Naval Institute Blog discusses the ability of the ARCTIC SEA to fall off the face of the Earth so easily as well as the inability for naval forces to find it in “Warning Shot“.

The Economic Times has “India releases $122 mn for Gorshkov modification“.

Your Industry News has “Reactors ready for floating plant“. Floating nuclear power as soon as late 2012.

The Akademik Lomonosov will house two 35 MW KLT-40S nuclear reactors, similar to those used in Russia’s nuclear powered ice breakers, and its generators will be capable of supplying a city of 200,000 people, officials said. OKBM has designed and supplied the reactors, while Kaluga Turbine Plant will supply the turbo-generators. The power vesselwas originally destined for the Archangelsk industrial shipyard, which is near to Severodvinsk in northwestern Russia, but will now be deployed at Vilyuchinsk, in the Kamchatka region in Russia’s far east.

War is Boring has “After Rain Break, Somali Piracy Set to Return“.

Shipgaz has “Unsecured hatch cover on Langeland“.

The film footage shows that hatch cover sections are missing and that the hatch cover was not entirely secured. In addition, the stone cargo has fallen out and the hold is empty. This indicates that Langeland heeled over and the hatch cover was fully or partly opened giving access to large quantities of water in a short period of time.

Casco Bay Boaters Blog has “Philanthropist Pledges $300K to Help Preserve SS United States“. The generous donor is Mr. Gerry Lenfest.

ABC News has photos: “Inside a National Treasure: SS United States“. (Found via Casco Bay Boaters Blog) So, how can I get a tour?


A new PBS documentary about the legendary ocean liner, the SS United States, sheds light on the aging ship, which many hope will one day be restored. This is how sightseers today come aboard: up a steep gangway that enters into what was the crew area. Actual passengers never boarded this way. (John Griffin/ABC News)

Ice News has “Whaling season in Iceland “a success”“.

Danger Room has “Note to Pirates: Don’t Mess with Egyptian Fishermen“.

Deep Water Writing explains what he does while on vacation from sea in “Summertime“.

This proved problematic. Even though I was often telling friends how much I liked having long vacations the truth was that I had no idea what to do with myself. I had grown so accustomed to the constant challenge and action of being at sea that everything ashore seemed a bore. This was ironic since I spent most of my time at sea telling the crew what I’d be doing as soon as I was off the boat.

CargoLaw has “The Death of Ioannis N.K. – On The Scene – Off Saldanha Bay, South Africa“.



The Business Insider has “Once Again, Traders Are Storing Oil On Ships“.

EUobserver has “Greenpeace dumps boulders in anti-trawling move“.

Greenpeace boats sailed on Monday (10 August) into Swedish waters and began dumping 180 two-three tonne granite rocks on the seabed to prevent fishermen from using bottom trawling in areas under European Union protection.

The area in Kattegat, between Denmark and Sweden, is mainly used by Danish fishermen but is listed under the EU’s Habitat Directive because of its unique and rich sea life.

The BBC has video from the vessel in “Greenpeace in anti-trawling move“. The spokeswoman is cute.

AMVER Blog asks “Could Amver Help Find Missing Russian Ship?

Could Amver play a role in the search for the missing ship? Certainly. Another use of Amver is to narrow down the possible search area of a missing ship. If the Arctic Sea was an Amver participant, it would have filed a sail plan prior to departing port and its route and destination known. As the Arctic Sea submitted position reports they would have been checked against that sail plan. Once the vessel was determined to be missing, search and rescue authorities could have reviewed the last position report against the sail plan and focused search and rescue efforts in a more defined area.

Shipping companies should consider this when weighing the decision to enroll in Amver. While their ships may be called upon to assist in a distress, they may also need to use Amver data to help determine the last known position of their vessel in the event it goes missing.

Marenostrum has a photo of the “MS Sovietskaya Rossiya .Fish Factory Ship Sovietskaya_Rossiya_001“.

Bryant’s Maritime Blog has “Australia – answers in WWII loss of HMAS Sydney“. (Click on the link to find the links to the report.) More details can be found at MarineBuzz.

The Australian Ministry of Defence released the report of its investigation into the loss of the HMAS Sydney off the coast of Western Australia on November 19, 1941. The cruiser sank rapidly, with the loss of all 645 crew, as a result of its engagement with the German raider HSK Kormoran. The Kormoran was operating as a Q-ship, disguised to resemble a Dutch merchant ship. Interviews of the surviving German sailors revealed that when the cruiser was close off its beam, the raider raised the German Navy ensign and opened fire. The first shot struck the bridge of the Sydney, apparently killing the captain and most of the senior officers, as well as disabling much of the ship’s internal communications and control capability. The battle lasted less than an hour with the loss of both vessels. The wrecks of the two warships were finally located in March 2008, leading to a reopening of the investigation into the worst naval disaster in Australian history. (8/12/09).

HAWSEPIPER: The Longest Climb is “Counting Down” until he signs off.

The Merchant Marine Express is “Getting Accustomed to Sea Life” on the MV AMERICAN TERN after months ashore unemployed.

NY TUGMASTER’S WEBLOG has “Google Earth and Sharing Local Knowledge“. Google Earth and Maps are useful tools. I have been working on a Google Map of Maritime-related attractions around the globe. Take a look here and let me know what I am missing.

BreakBulk Industry News covers what happens after all those wind turbine parts are discharged in a port in “Wind Power’s Long and Winding Road“. has “Nigeria: ISPs Code – Non-Compliance Opens Nigeria to Terrorist Attacks“. (Found via Hunt of the Sea Wolves)

Most of the people gaining access into the port do not really have business there and merely loiter about in the premises. There is the absence of closed circuit television lack of electronic access control, and inadequate number of personnel of both the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) Security Department and the Ports Authority Police Command (PAPC) for effective security coverage.

Neptunus Lex has Administration threats to gut Navy healthcare for retirees (“Tricare For Life”) in “Promises, Promises“.

Information Dissemination has building “The New Somali Navy“.


70.8% has photos of “Operation Dynamo and the Little Ships of Dunkirk“.


tugster: a waterblog has photos of lots of steam whistles with “A Horn Blows in Brooklyn“.

Crooked in Canada wonders with “Arctic Sea: Nothing Like Putting Your Life on the Line for a Load of Timber, Right?

Ransoming off wood, are you f**king kidding me? There something more than just wood on that ship, but the Russians aren’t going to say anything about it. They will keep their cards close to their chest, if only because whatever is onboard that ship, the rest of the world wouldn’t be too happy about it. I still think it is weapons, perhaps even missiles, destined for a country that is on an international arms embargo list.

Just why did Russia waste no time in sending half a fleet in search of this vessel? If any other ship had just gone missing they would have asked local authorities to conduct a search. One good question is, where can you ship cargo from Algiers and were there any vessels in Algiers waiting for cargo?

Spiegel Online has “Shipping Industry Fights for Survival“.

The global economic crisis is wreaking havoc on shipping: Demand and prices have collapsed and ports are filling up with fleets of empty freighters. The crisis has fueled cut-throat competition and not all companies will survive. Germany’s Hapag-Lloyd alone needs 1.75 billion euros to stay afloat.

MarineBuzz has “Bhuvan: Indian Version of Google Earth by ISRO“.

The Wall Street Journal has “It’s Fish Versus Farmers in the San Joaquin Valley“.

On Dec. 15, 2008, the Bush administration’s Fish and Wildlife Service chose fish, a decision driven by a lawsuit filed in federal court in 2006 by the Natural Resources Defense Council and other environmental groups. To settle the suit, the Fish and Wildlife Service agreed to divert more than 150 billion gallons of water this year away from farmers south of San Francisco in hopes of protecting the Delta smelt—a three-inch bait fish. The water is now flowing underneath the Golden Gate Bridge and out into the Pacific Ocean.

hawse pipe has “American President Lines hat badge.” and how they were changed during WWII.

Watts up with that? has “Ocean heat content and Earth’s radiation imbalance“.

Hellenic Shipping News has “Container Lines ‘Tough’ Talks May Fail to Lift Fees, End Losses“.

Shipping lines operating half the world’s container vessels plan to raise Asia-U.S. rates, ending a price war that contributed to industrywide losses. Falling demand and a flood of new vessels may stop them. A group of 14 lines, including CMA CMG SA, Evergreen Marine Corp. and Neptune Orient Lines Ltd.’s APL Ltd., agreed to raise rates by $500 per 40-foot container starting this week. The figure was a “voluntary guideline,” the Transpacific Stabilization Agreement, or TSA, said last month. The lines, now in the busiest period of the year, may have to settle for less as slumping traffic and empty ships let customers seek discounts.

CGblog.Org has “Free Coast Guard Lighthouse, Who’s In?” It is the Minot’s Ledge Light.

Maritime Compass has reference material with “Marques d’impressors = Printers’ Devices“.

The Islomaniac has “Aristotle Onassis’ Island For Sale“. You only need 100 plus million British Pounds.

BoingBoing has “Hovercraft’s 50th anniversary and a human-powered version“. (Found via Instapundit)

Space War has “Detected Russian subs ‘failed’ their mission: report” as now the Canadians track the submarines from the air.

BitterEnd covers the suggestion that vessels with an Automated External Defibrillator indicate that they have one in “AED Nautical Flag“.

The Old Salt Blog has the fate of the Soviet submarine (K-77) that was used in the filming of the movie K-19 in “The Submarine Museum that Sank“. Maybe the movie jinxed the sub?

Greenbang has “Climate ‘gun’? Warming oceans set off methane“.

Methane hydrates are an ice-like substance composed of water and methane which is stable in conditions of high pressure and low temperature. At present, methane hydrates are stable at water depths greater than 400 metres in the ocean off Spitsbergen. Thirty years ago, however, they were stable at water depths as shallow as 360 metres.

This is the first time that such behaviour in response to climate change has been observed in the modern period.

While most of the methane currently released from the seabed is dissolved in the seawater before it reaches the atmosphere, methane seeps are episodic and unpredictable, and periods of more vigorous outflow of methane into the atmosphere are possible. Furthermore, methane dissolved in the seawater contributes to ocean acididfication.

Failed Real estate scammer and ‘the World’s most hated Blogger’ Casey Serin has a new plan: “We’re Buying Our Own Tropical Island by 2012… You In?

Lexington Institute has “Pay Attention To The Arctic Region“.

The Obama Administration is not paying sufficient attention to what is happening in the Far North. Nor is it making the proper investments in the kinds of capabilities that will ensure this nation’s ability to assert its rights and protect its interests and friends in the Arctic region. Operations in extremely cold environments often require different equipment than for more southerly climates. Very little of the Coast Guard’s Deepwater program, which is designed to modernize that Service for the demands of the 21st Century, focuses on operations in the Arctic. The Navy has a similar problem.

Towmasters: the Master of Towing Vessels Assoc. Forum has comments on a towing accident with “Getting Tripped: Roll The Video…..” and includes the following dramatic video.


Fairplay Daily News has:

Who’s watching NY’s watchdogs? – ON THE waterfront in New York, a scathing report has accused a watchdog agency of itself being rife with corruption.

A report followed a two-year state investigation of the city agency responsible for monitoring port criminality, the Waterfront Commission of New York Harbor. (Note by Fred: Link to Commission website here and to the PDF report here.)

The scathing, 60-page report by the state inspector general’s office accused top management at the panel of negligence and malfeasance ranging from “lackluster oversight of shipping companies to conflicts of interest and abrogation of legal responsibilities undermining the very purpose of the commission”.

Commissioners Michael Axelrod of New York and Michael Madonna of New Jersey and executive director Thomas De Maria were the main targets of the investigation.

They were also accused of improper hiring of workers and misuse of Department of Homeland Security federal grants.

The report noted “fundamental problems” with the commission’s system of licensing stevedoring companies and found that audits of licensing compliance 14 years behind schedule.

The director of audits conducted a private tax preparation business out of his office, the study found. Axelrod’s term expired and De Maria resigned while the inquiry took place, while Madonna was fired on 5 August. – Fairplay Homepage (Used with Permission)



Arctic Sea’s unstable sisters – TWO SISTER ships of the missing Arctic Sea capsized and foundered, LR-Fairplay casualty figures indicate.

The figures also revealed that two other sister ships suffered serious stability-related incidents.

First, the 1990-built Teklivka sank in the Mediterranean in March 2006 in heavy weather, with a cargo of containers; 15 crew members were rescued but one was lost.

Also, the 1991-built Tiger Force was abandoned by its crew after it developed a list in 1998 and later sank.

In 2004, Nova Spirit (built 1991) also developed a list in the Mediterranean Sea in heavy weather with a cargo of containers on board. This vessel was later taken in tow to safety.

The most high-profile case involved the 1992-built Torm Alexandra, which almost capsized while discharging boxes alongside in Abidjan, Nigeria.

LR-Fairplay records indicate that Arctic Sea was built for Sakhalin Shipping as Okhotskoye. It had three subsequent owners before being bought in March 2005 by current owner Solchart.

The class records of the vessel indicate the current class society as the Russian Maritime Register, having been transferred from Lloyd’s Register in 2005. A total of 22 vessels of this design were constructed from 1990 to 1993 by Sedef Gemi in Turkey using a Russian design.

Arctic Sea has been missing since July with a crew of 15 Russian seafarers. – 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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