Maritime Monday 182

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October 5, 2009

The following is posted by Fred Fry:

Welcome to this 182nd edition of Maritime Monday.

You can find Maritime Monday 132 here. (Published 20 October 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 TBS International Limited:

TBS is a fully-integrated transportation service company that offers customers the TBS Five Star Service consisting of: ocean transportation, operations, logistics, port services, and strategic planning. We offer liner, parcel, bulk, and chartering services, supported by a fleet of multipurpose tweendeckers and handysize and handymax bulk carriers, including specialized heavy-lift vessels.

TBS serves a diverse client base of approximately 300 customers in 20 countries. Our customers rely on our regular service as an integral part of their supply chain, and many of these relationships have been established for over ten years.

TBS has developed its business around key trade routes between Latin America and China, Japan and South Korea, as well as ports in North America, Africa, the Caribbean, and the Middle East.

TBS’ fleet is comprised of 48 vessels with an aggregate of 1.43 million dwt, consisting of 25 multipurpose tweendeckers and 23 handysize/handymax bulk carriers. It is a flexible fleet that includes heavy lift capability and newly-constructed tonnage. In addition to the newbuild M/V Rockaway Belle, TBS has on order with Chinese shipyards five additional Roymar Class 34,000 dwt multipurpose vessels with retractable tweendecks, of which four are scheduled for delivery in 2010, and the remaining one in 2011.






* Chinese-made railway cars are lifted onboard the TBS vessel in Shanghai *


* The TBS Logistics team organized a plan to save the client time and expense by arranging for a single port call for the entire shipment to complete the ‘TBS Source-to-Site’ all purpose transportation. *


* Ship Launch – ROCKAWAY BELLE *

Their homepage can be found here.


This Week’s Items:

EagleSpeak has “Somali Pirates: Spanish Fishing Trawler Grabbed” which happened in the Indian Ocean and also has an update: “Somali Pirates: Fising Boat Taken to Pirate Port“.

gCaptain has “Failure At Sea – Today’s Captain is expected not to make any mistakes“. Some people are just not allowed to make any mistakes. Police, Firemen, Doctors, gun owners, airline pilots, ship pilots and Merchant Mariners all seem to be in that group. Who else? Perhaps car drivers should be added to that group since the ‘accidents happen’ seems to excuse/breed carelessness.

BitterEnd Blog has a tutorial video: “How To Tie The Monkey’s Fist“.

Shipgaz News has “Seafarer wages frozen until next year“.

At its meeting in Manila, the International Bargaining Forum, IBF, has reached an agreement to freeze salaries until sometime next year. The reasons are the current difficult economic situation and that a working group has been formed to review today’s system of allocation of pay rises between salary and social items and between officers and ratings. A report is expected next year.

US Naval Institute Blog has an interview with the author of the new book “Theodore Roosevelt’s Naval Diplomacy: The U.S. Navy and the Birth of the American Century by CDR. Henry J. Hendrix, USN“.

Towmasters: the Master of Towing Vessels Assoc. Forum has great video: “A New Twist, Literally: Dynamic Oval Towing“.

The New Republic has “Aquacalypse Now – The End of Fish“.


The jig, however, is nearly up. In 1950, the newly constituted Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations estimated that, globally, we were catching about 20 million metric tons of fish (cod, mackerel, tuna, etc.) and invertebrates (lobster, squid, clams, etc.). That catch peaked at 90 million tons per year in the late 1980s, and it has been declining ever since. Much like Madoff’s infamous operation, which required a constant influx of new investments to generate “revenue” for past investors, the global fishing-industrial complex has required a constant influx of new stocks to continue operation. Instead of restricting its catches so that fish can reproduce and maintain their populations, the industry has simply fished until a stock is depleted and then moved on to new or deeper waters, and to smaller and stranger fish. And, just as a Ponzi scheme will collapse once the pool of potential investors has been drained, so too will the fishing industry collapse as the oceans are drained of life.

Ria Novosti has “Russian warships to escort Abkhazia-bound freight vessels“.

Alaska Dispatch wonders if isolated Alaskans will be drawn to piracy in “An overlooked Arctic menace?

Mad Mariner has “Buying a Repossessed Boat“.

Lloyd’s List has “Partial victory for Full City pair“.

THE DISTRICT judge assessing the Full City case has demanded that the two Chinese crew members detained by police are given their passports back.

Master Aming Zong and third officer Qilang Lu have been kept in Norway after the 26,758 dwt bulk vessel grounded in the summer after dragging its anchor in a storm.

The resulting oil spill from the ruptured bunker tanks made national headlines in the country just prior to a national election.

Springbored’s Springboard asks “Who Shrunk The San Francisco Fleet Week?

The Maritime Executive has “Shortsea Shipping: It’s Good for What Ails You“.

MarineBuzz has “HMAS Kanimbla on Operation Padang Assist to Indonesia“.

The Journal of Commerce has “Maersk to Replace Danish Deck Officers“.

Maersk Line’s plans to save money by replacing a number of its Danish deck officers with foreign nationals ignited controversy in Copenhagen, where the world’s largest container line is based.

Maersk announced plans Wednesday to replace 170 Danish deck officers with foreign “competent officers at a much lower price,” according to the Copenhagen Post.

The Danish carrier said it is not firing the officers, but offering them voluntary retirement.


Sea * Fever has “A ship designed to knock those “condescending, supercilious bastards” down a peg” covering the current attempts to save the SS UNITED STATES as it seems the  fate of the ship is nearing end-game. The will to save the ship is there however it is the quantity of money that is needed that will make saving this ship a long shot.

The Business Insider tries to match the SS UNITED STATES with a buyer in “Do We Have A Boat For Roman Abramovich!“.

Lloyd’s List Newsroom Blog notes the differences in the handling of maritime accidents depending on where they occur: “‘United’ states?

Nonetheless, San Francisco has Barbara Boxer and erudite environmentalists; Houston has inhabitants who by dint of the state’s dependency on the oil trade have an inkling of what ships do for their economy.

San Francisco has a mayor who goes ballistic when he is not the first to be informed of an oil spill; Houston merely has a competent corps of federal and local first responders. San Francisco is a city by the bay; Houston is a maritime town that happens to have a port.

Puget Sound Maritime has “My father-in-law’s World War II-era TWIC card“.

Handy Shipping Guide has “Not Just Pirates Who Seize Ships – More Vessels and Cargoes Delayed as Authorities Clamp Down Globally“. (I commented on this issue back in January: “Pirates not the only ones holding merchant sailors hostage“)

Forbes has “Deep Oil, Deep Unknowns – The Lower Tertiary play in the Gulf of Mexico may not live up to the hype.

Maritime Journal has “Propulsion system for breakthrough wind farm ship“. Why assemble turbine installations offshore when you can bring the completed units out to sea.

The Malta Independent Online has “20 years on, aquaculture industry still causes controversy“.

Kings Point Waterfront has writings from King’s Point’s first Sailing Master, Captain PROSSER here and here.

The Wall Street Journal has “Alaska Can Meet U.S. Energy Needs – Obama’s Interior Department faces a big decision on offshore oil.

The United States is now facing a decision on how to meet its future energy needs. In the coming months, the U.S. Department of the Interior will weigh whether to allow oil and gas exploration on Alaska’s Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) to be expanded. Such exploration could set the country on a clear and sustainable energy path for decades to come.

NY TUGMASTER’S WEBLOG has French river transport photos in “Ahhh, Paris“.

Professional Mariner has an update on the NEW FLAME wreck removal in “Titan executes key operation in mammoth salvage job off Gibraltar.

Inside GNSS has “Europe Declares Start of EGNOS Satellite Navigation Service“.

Once known as Europe’s GNSS-1 project, the EGNOS initiative was launched in the mid-1990s as a counterpart to the U.S. GPS Wide Area Augmentation System (WAAS) and to provide the foundation for Europe’s full-fledged GNSS system that became the Galileo program.

Casco Bay Boaters Blog has “Ethanol Gasoline Causes Problems for Maine Islanders“.

The water-attracting properties of ethanol make it impossible to store E-10 gasoline for very long; mechanics say it remains stable for 60 to 90 days, and then only under ideal storage conditions.

Tugster has photos of the 108 year old tug URGER.

Houston ship pilot/photographer OneEighteen has his photo “Ship Portrait – “Primrose”“.



Marenostrum has a painting of the “SS AGAMEMNON“.

On her epic voyage East of Suez she proved that he Compound Steam Engine was fuel efficient enough to burn coal at a rate low enough to leave sufficient space for a profitable cargo out and home and still carry enough coal to make along passage out as well as home.

BarentsObserver has “Greenpeace blocking Svalbard coal shipment“. Five were eventually arrested.

The Guardian has a photo guide to catching the red signal crayfish. Apparently the American variety is pushing British crayfish to extinction.

Arctic Focus has “Inuit should have a role in Northwest Passage“. Interesting thought. I have always thought that American Indians should have control of the country’s management of natural resources.

CDR Salamander has a look at the loss of the Royal Navy carriers HMS COURAGEOUS and HMS GLORIOUS in his series “Fullbore Friday“.

HollandAmericaBlog has “Captain’s Log: Among the Yachts of Monaco“.

59° 56′ N has “Norwegian Shipowners and the media: Two instances“.

For all the depth of their combined resources, shipowners’ associations always seem to punch under their weight in the media. Interview a shipowner and you’ll be charmed and impressed by their knowledge, gumption and wit. Turn to the organization that gives voice to them collectively and you’ll be dumbfounded and dismayed.

National Geographic‘s October 4th Photo of the Day is “Jacques Cousteau and “Diving Saucer”“.


Information Dissemination has news of another upcoming movie: “Jutland 1916“.

Notes From the Wooden and Iron World has a FALLS OF CLYDE “Progress Report“.

Deep Water Writing has found a job which lies at the other end of a long “Plane Ride“.

A certain level of Zen is necessary to endure a transpacific flight to meet a ship on the other side of the world. My itinerary calls for one eighteen hour flight, Chicago to Tokyo, followed by another seven hours aloft to arrive in Singapore the day after tomorrow.

The last three years meeting my former vessel in such not so far flung places as Beaumont, Baltimore and Charleston have spoiled me when it comes to the commute.

Bellona has “Russia says it will dismantle 191 derelict subs by 2010“.

Maritime Compass has “Pirate woman & FictionMags“.

The Stupid Shall Be Punished has rescue video: “MEDEVAC From Ohio-Class Boat In Pacific Northwest“.

Freightdawg has “APL Officially Opens Phoenix HQ“.

Tims Times has “Don’t mention the war” as his ship calls Kiel, Germany.

The Old Salt Blog has “Jessica Watson sets sail again – to cheers and jeers“. (Update: YACHTe has “Jessica Watson arrives unscathed in Sydney“)

Her checklist made disturbing reading for the accident investigators, specifically the line: “Check rig once a week. Look up with binoculars”.

There were more childish doodles scribbled on the page than survival tips. Mr Stewart said MSQ officials wrote to and met Jessica’s parents, Roger and Julie, to express concerns about her setting off alone around the world.

The Merchant Marine Express has his shipboard routine in “My Life at sea in a Day“.

AMVER Blog has “Amver Participating LNG Carrier Rescues Four“. The ship is the LNG Carrier SERI BIJAKSANA.

War is Boring has “World Politics Review: In Somalia, Security Gains Mean Piracy Decline“.

The Misunderstood Mariner has “Pilots“.

The only real qualification you need to be a pilot is local knowledge that a captain from outside the area — called a “stranger” — doesn’t possess. And that knowledge can be very localized indeed. For a time early in the decade, the port at Cabo San Lucas, Mexico required ships to take on a harbor pilot. He came out in a water taxi, shook hands with the captain, and sipped a cup of coffee while he yelled at charter fishermen to get out of the way. The whole trip was a straight line less than half a mile long from the “pilot station” to the dock. Between the short trip and the yelling, he didn’t even have time to finish his cup of coffee. Compare that to the Chesapeake Bay pilots, who have to learn 200 miles of some of the most traveled waterway in the Americas. Pilots who have to deal with large areas may work in teams, with one on the bridge while the other one sleeps.

Helsingin Sanomat has “Nord Stream given permission to destroy sunken war materiel along Baltic gas pipeline route“.


Fairplay Daily News has:

Polembros barred from US – ALL 20 vessels managed by Greece’s Polembros Shipping will be barred from the US until late 2012 as part of its guilty pleas today on environmental charges.

The Polembros case stems from violations involving the bulker Theotokos in September 2008. The company will pay a $2.7M fine plus a $100,000 community service payment for invasive species research.

The barring of all calls during a three-year probation is meant to “prevent the company from participating in economic activity that takes place in territorial ports and waterways of the US”, asserted John Cruden of the US Department of Justice’s environmental division.

He warned the entire shipping industry to “take heed”.

Polembros Shipping pleaded guilty today to two counts of violating the Act to Prevent Pollution from Ships (for an inaccurate oil record book and carrying fuel oil in a tank forward of the collision barrier); violating the Nonindigenous Aquatic Nuisance Prevention & Control Act (for failing to maintain accurate ballast water records); violating the Ports and Waterways Safety Act (for failing to report a cracked rudder stem); and making false statements (by concealing a fuel oil leak into the forepeak ballast tank).

The Theotokos’s master, chief officer and chief engineer have previously entered guilty pleas in the case. – Fairplay Homepage (Used with Permission)


Bodies reported on toxic ship – TWO DEAD bodies have reportedly been spotted on a ship loaded with toxic waste that Italian authorities suspect was sunk by the Mafia.

Murky photos of the vessel, which was found off the Calabrian coast, apparently show the bodies near some yellow barrels with the word “toxic” written on their sides, the BBC reported.

An informant told an Italian judge that the ship was one of three containing toxic waste that he had blown up, the BBC added.

That explosion was part of an illegal operation that bypassed toxic waster disposal rules, the report explained. The ship has not been named.

Waste specialists are examining samples of toxic waste – some of it rumoured to be nuclear – taken from the wreck. – 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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