NTSB issues report on fatal engine room fire; EPA grant will help Port of Long Beach upgrade cranes, tugs

NTSB issues report on fatal engine room fire in 58 year old towing vessel
November 17, 2017 —The National Transportation Safety Board has issued the report on the July 14, 2016 engine room fire aboard a 1958-built Luhr Bros towing vessel in which two crew members were severely burned, one of whom subsequently died. At the time of the incident, the uninspected towing vessel The Admiral was moored alongside barges in the La Quinta Channel, Gulf Intracoastal Waterway, near Ingleside, Texas. The vessel is powered by two 1,200 hp (895 kW)\ General Motors EMD 567C/ 645E main engines.


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Fit to be Tied at Palma Melges 40 Grand Prix

A challenging and exciting Day Three in Palma keeps Rombelli in the lead, Ishida ties it up on the scoreboard

(17 November 2017 / Palma de Mallorca, Spain) – Day three in Palma was, to say the least, the most intense yet of the event, if not the entire season. The battle continues between event leader Alessandro Rombelli’s STIG with tactician Francesco Bruni in first place overall on countback, and his most major opponent, Japan’s Yukihiro Ishida’s SIKON with Manu Weiller on tactics sits in second with equal points.


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Cooperation for oil spill preparedness in west, central and southern Africa

Briefing: 31 17/11/2017

​Participants at the regional conference discussed a number of topics, including relevant international and regional legislation, exercise and training, use of oil spill dispersants, trans-boundary cooperation and shoreline clean-up.

A regional conference of countries in west, central and southern Africa has committed to continue to work at both national and regional levels to boost preparedness to deal with oil spill incidents which could be devastating both for the marine environment and financially.

The conference (6-9 November) in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, was hosted by CIAPOL, the Ivoirian pollution control centre. It brought together industry and government focal points from 20 out of 22 west, central and southern African countries covered by the Global Initiative for West, Central and Southern Africa (GI-WACAF). This project is run by the International Maritime Organization (IMO), the United Nations agency with responsibility for safety and security at sea and the prevention of pollution from ships, and IPIECA, the global oil and gas industry association for environmental and social issues.

The GI-WACAF project aims to enhance the level of oil-spill preparedness in a particularly vulnerable region, adjacent to international sea trade routes and significant and rapidly expanding offshore oil and gas activity. The regional conference is the largest event for oil spill preparedness, response and cooperation activities in west, central and southern Africa. It is held once every two years to review progress to date, provide a forum to share experiences and set the project’s priorities for the next two years.

Participants discussed a number of topics, including relevant international and regional legislation, exercise and training, use of oil spill dispersants, trans-boundary cooperation and shoreline clean-up. Experts from Cedre, ITOPF, OSPRI, OSRL, SANCCOB and a number of international oil companies helped to facilitate* the conference, alongside the Project’s network of dedicated focal points from the region.

The GI-WACAF project, which was initiated in 2006, focuses on strengthening national oil spill response capacities as well as transboundary response capabilities, in line with IMO’s  International Convention on Oil Pollution Preparedness, Response and Co-operation 1990 (OPRC 90). This treaty is the international instrument that provides a framework designed to facilitate international co-operation and mutual assistance in preparing for and responding to major oil pollution incidents. It requires States to plan and prepare by developing national systems for pollution response in their respective countries, and by maintaining adequate capacity and resources to address oil pollution emergencies.

Numerous activities designed to develop many aspects of national spill preparedness and response have been held over the past decade.

The 100th GI-WACAF activity, in Abidjan and Assinie, Côte d’Ivoire (8-9 June 2017), demonstrated the progress being made in the region. During that activity, GI-WACAF’s primary role was the evaluation of a national exercise, planned and implemented by the national authorities, which simulated the collision of an oil tanker with an unknown ship off the Ivorian coast, causing a major oil spill. This oil spill training exercise involved more than 100 participants from various public institutions and the private sector, working together to respond to the simulated spill, first at sea and then ashore. The exercise tested Côte d’Ivoire’s National Oil Spill Contingency Plan, developed with support from the GI-WACAF project.

By the end of the 2016/2017 biennium, more than ten national workshops and three regional/sub-regional workshops will have been implemented, and one national exercise will have been supported by the project, where the  principle focus has been on the development and testing of national contingency plans. GI-WACAF has also been working to coordinate with other entities and projects with similar mandates in the region, in order to avoid duplication and collectively build upon achievements and progress made.

These efforts aim to complement the work undertaken at the national level to ratify and fully implement relevant IMO treaties, including the OPRC Convention and liability and compensation treaties which cover pollution damage by oil from ships (such as the International Convention on Civil Liability for Oil Pollution Damage (CLC 1992) and the International Convention on Civil Liability for Bunker Oil Pollution Damage, 2001). Ratification amongst countries is steadily increasing. Most of the 22 countries have now ratified the OPRC and CLC conventions, while the pace of ratification of the Bunkers convention needs further commitment and focus since only six of the 22 have ratified this treaty to date.

Since the GI-WACAF project’s inception, significant strides have been made throughout the region in the development of spill preparedness and response capacity, with nearly all countries now having a designated competent authority response for spill response. There has been a three-fold increase in the number of countries with a national oil spill contingency plan.

Further priorities for the next two years include more effective sharing of key information through the development of databases on available response resources, key contacts and response policies.

The need for improved inter-agency coordination and clear agreement and definition on the roles and responsibilities of those engaged in all aspects of oil preparedness and response at a national level were also highlighted at the conference. Further support in effectively addressing shoreline clean-up and waste management within national spill response systems, was also identified as a priority need for action in the next two years.

The 22 African countries in the GI-WACAF project are: Angola, Benin, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Congo, Côte d’Ivoire, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Equatorial Guinea, Liberia, Mauritania, Namibia, Nigeria, Democratic Republic of the Congo, South Africa, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, Sierra Leone and Togo.

GI-WACAF website : http://www.giwacaf.net/en/

* Facilitators of the 2017 GIWACAF Regional Conference:
Cedre – Centre de Documentation de Recherche et d’Expérimentations sur les pollutions accidentelles des eaux
ITOPF – International Tanker Owners Pollution Federation
OSPRI – Oil Spill Preparedness Regional Initiative (Caspian Sea – Black Sea – Central Eurasia)
OSRL – Oil Spill Response Ltd
SANCCOB – Southern African Foundation for the Conservation of Coastal Birds
International oil companies – comprising representatives from Exxon Mobil, Total and Shell Nigeria

IMO – the International Maritime Organization – is the United Nations specialized agency with responsibility for the safety and security of shipping and the prevention of marine pollution by ships.

Web site: www.imo.org

Melges 40 Grand Prix Continues With Rombelli Taking the Lead

The second day of racing in Palma de Mallorca gives way to two additional races and a new overnight leader


(16 November 2017 / Palma de Mallorca, Spain) – Day two in Palma at the 2017 Melges 40 Grand Prix hosted by Real Club Nautico de Palma featured two close races offering up a new provisional leader. Alessandro Rombelli’s STIG with tactician Francesco Bruni is now ahead of Japan’s Yukihiro Ishida’s SIKON with Manu Weiller on tactics by one slim point.


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Vigor books $8.5 million MSC order; Walk-to-work vessel starts outfitting at Ulstein Verft

Vigor books $8.5 million MSC order
November 16, 2017 — Vigor Marine LLC, Portland, OR, is being awarded an $8,523,020 firm-fixed-price contract for a 42-calendar day shipyard availability for the mid-term availability of USNS Henry J.Kaiser (T-AO 187). Work will include general services, clean and gas free tanks, tank deck overhead preservation, flight deck non-skid, number 6 port and starboard ballast tank preservation, aft superstructure repairs, refrigerated container modifications, and number 3 ship service diesel generator 24K overhaul.


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The Mangrove Farms of Fiji are Making Waves on the Environment

Tropical forests, rough mountainous terrain, and uninhabited lands – the islands of Fiji in the South Pacific have all the key elements to create animal and plant life found nowhere else in the world. While nature lovers can find primitive mammals, highly-evolved ferns and rare iguanas roaming the island, it is the endangered mangroves which are at the forefront of Fiji’s conservation efforts.


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Ishida’s SIKON in Command of Melges 40 Grand Prix of Palma de Mallorca

Three races and fantastic breeze results in a grand-prix-perfect opening day in Palma

(15 November 2017 / Palma de Mallorca, Spain) – The third and final event of 2017 Melges 40 Grand Prix hosted by Real Club Nautico de Palma officially got underway today with brand new owner Yukihiro Ishida alongside of tactician Manuel Weiller on SIKON gaining the overall lead.


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Eastern will use FORAN for OPC build; GulfMark Offshore emerges from Chapter 11 bankruptcy

Damen SAR passes roll-over with engines running test
November 15, 2017 — Damen Shipyards has successfully completed full scale roll-over testing of its Search and Rescue Vessel 1906 with running engines. The tests were performed in Antalya, Turkey in cooperation with the Turkish Coast Guard, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and engine manufacturer MTU. Damen is building six of the SAR 1906 boats for Turkey as part of an agreement between the European Union and the IOM that will see the vessels used in refugee and migrant rescue operations.

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NAT Tanker Market Report and Communication with Shareholders, Investors and Others

Hamilton, Bermuda, November 15, 2017

 Tanker Market Reports:

 We often receive questions about the tanker market. There is now a tanker market report dated November 10, 2017 posted on the front page of our web site www.nat.bm. This report does not give precise information about the earnings of a shipping company. It does, however, reflect the direction of the market for several types of ships in a longer perspective.


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Sail Aid UK News: Fundraising Dinner total released by Sail Aid UK

Fundraising Dinner: Total sum released by Sail Aid UK 
for Caribbean regeneration projects
The Trustees of Sail Aid UK, the organisation that is uniting the UK sailing community in a long-term fundraising drive to help the victims of the Caribbean Islands most severely impacted by the September hurricanes, are overjoyed with the results of their first big fundraising event, the Black Tie/Loud Shirt Dinner held on Saturday night 11th November 2017, which has raised an incredible £46,000.
The Trustees of Sail Aid UK are overjoyed with the amount raised at Saturday evening’s fundraising dinner. Photo: Chris Ison


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