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OIL SPILL RESPONSE VESSELS

20th Anniversary of Oil Spill Drill Program

Minerals Management Service (MMS) Director Liz Birnbaum today highlighted the 20th anniversary of the MMS Gulf of Mexico Region’s Unannounced Oil Spill Drill Program.  The first unannounced drill with an offshore oil and gas operator in the Gulf was held on July 25, 1989. Since the first unannounced drill, an additional 273 drills have been held in the Gulf.  The MMS designs the drill to exercise an oil and gas and pipeline operator’s Oil Spill Response Plan and evaluates its spill management team’s effectiveness in responding to a simulated spill event. “While preventing oil spills is our top priority throughout the offshore energy exploration and extraction process, operators must be ready to respond to a spill event,” Birnbaum said. “The Unannounced Drill Program enables MMS to monitor and enhance the operators’ response capabilities throughout the Outer Continental Shelf.” In order to test an operator’s ability and effectiveness in responding, there are different methods used in a drill.  A drill may consist of a table top exercise or the actual deployment of specific response equipment such as oil spill response vessels and dispersant aircraft. Every drill tests an operator’s ability to notify the appropriate contacts including federal regulatory agencies, affected state and local agencies, internal response coordinators and response contractors


NRC, Resolve Expand Firefighting and Oil Spill Response

National Response Corporation (NRC) and Resolve Marine Group announce the expansion of their 1Call response coverage for all vessels trading in U.S. waters. The service offers tanker and nontank vessel owners and operators full, single-source coverage in compliance with latest U.S. Coast Guard regulations for Salvage and Marine Firefighting (SMFF), and Oil Spill Removal Organization (OSRO). This announcement reflects the U.S


Coastal Marine Expands in Brazil

Coastal Marine Equipment has extended its presence into the Brazilian marketplace by teaming with Macnor Marine and Macnor Services to assist in equipment sales and service. This relationship has proven successful as Coastal Marine has been awarded the deck equipment for two Oil Spill Response Vessels’ being built in Brazil at EISA Shipyard. Each vessel will receive an ABS approved anchor windlass, two capstans and two tuggers


Arctic Voyage Underway for Both Shell Drillships

In the last week, both of Shell’s drill ships departed Unalaska for the Arctic. The Noble Discoverer drill rig, which made headlines when it dragged anchor and almost came aground on Airport Beach in June, is bound for the Chukchi Sea. The Kulluk drill ship is now halfway to the Beaufort Sea. But the drilling season is already almost over, with only a month left to drill in the Chukchi, and two months left in the Beaufort


Damen Shipyards Open Norway Office

Arnout Damen, COO of Damen Shipyards Group, officially opens a new office in Norwegian Stavanger. When asked why Dutch headquartered Damen Shipyards sets up an advanced base in Stavanger, its new Sales Manager said: “It is the European Oil & Gas capital and the place the ONS Exhibition and conferences are held. Stavanger is, so to speak, a mini-Houston”. The opening gave Mr Hottentot a chance to show what Damen is about and in particular that it is becoming more and


Horizon To Build OSV Trio

Horizon Shipbuilding and SLOK Nigeria Limited have signed contracts for the construction of three offshore vessels - all of which will operate under a long-term contract with Mobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited. The contract calls for Horizon to build a 200 ft. (61 m) steel Single Point Mooring (SPM) Oil Spill Response Vessel with a total of 4,000-shaft hp. The vessel will be fitted with controllable pitch propellers and a dynamic positioning system


Great Ships of 2013: Damen Modular Barge

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‘LEGO’ FOR PROFESSIONALS If there is one thing that we hear time and again in the maritime world is that the manufacture of boats, ships and maritime structures in general is not as efficient as found in larger, mass market transportation modes because of the unique peculiarities of each different vessel. Damen has long been a proponent of standardized production, a concept which is extended to the “Nth” degree via the Damen Modular Barge concept


Harvey Gulf Contracts to Build First U.S. LNG-Powered Vessels

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Today, Harvey Gulf International Marine became the first U.S. vessel operator to contract for construction of vessels capable of operating exclusively on natural gas.  The agreement is for two, 302’ X 64’, Dual Fuel Offshore Supply Vessels, with an option for a third.  The contract was signed with Trinity Offshore, which will build the vessels at their Gulfport, MS shipyard.    In addition to being powered by cleaner burning natural gas


Hong Kong Conducts Oil Spill Exercise

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An annual oil spill response joint exercise, this year code-named Oilex 2013, was held on October 17 off Ha Mei Wan, Lamma Island, to test responses in combating oil pollution in Hong Kong waters. Under the Maritime Oil Spill Response Plan, the Marine Department coordinated the exercise and other government departments including the Civil Aid Service, the Auxiliary Medical Service, the Food and Environmental Hygiene Department


Ship Fined for Failure to Have Oil Spill Readiness Plan

The Washington Department of Ecology (Ecology) has levied an $8,500 fine to the Greek shipping firm Marmaras Navigation Co. Ltd. for operating a cargo vessel in Washington waters without a state-approved oil spill readiness plan. The penalty against Marmaras Navigation marks the first time Ecology has levied a fine under its new oil spill contingency plan rule adopted in October 2006. Ecology requires that cargo and passenger ships, tank vessels


Seattle to Host Spill Preparedness Conference

The U.S. Coast Guard and Washington Department of Ecology will host a spill preparedness conference May 20-21 at the Jackson Federal Building in Seattle.   The two-day seminar is an opportunity to discuss the latest in spill-recovery theory and technology


Marathassa Released After Vancouver Bunker Spill

Marathassa: Western Canada Marine Response Corporation crews replacing oiled boom with clean (yellow) containment boom. Pic courtesy: Fisheries and Oceans Canada

 The Cyprus-flagged  cargo ship M/V Marathassa — which has been blamed for spilling several thousand litres of bunker fuel into English Bay — has been released by the Canadian Coast Guard.   The vessel headed to a berth in Vancouver Harbour to be loaded with grain


Tug Crew Commended for Emergency Rescue Tow

Crew members of Crowleys tugboat Alert receiving USCG commendation (Photo: Crowley)

Crowley crews commended by U.S. Coast Guard for assistance during Kulluk emergency rescue tow   Captain Rodney Layton and his crew aboard Crowley’s Prevention and Response tugboat (PRT) Alert were recently recognized by U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) Capt


Dispersants ... Will we ever be able to use them again?

Jonathan K. Waldron

On January 22, 2015, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) published a Proposed Rule on dispersants. The Proposed Rule drastically changes the EPA’s approach to dispersants and could imperil proven and effective means of responding to marine oil disasters


US Well Control Regulations Proposed

BSEE Director Brian Salerno

U.S. Interior Department releases proposed well control regulations to ensure safe and responsible offshore oil and gas development; result of extensive consultation, evaluation after Deepwater Horizon   In response to the findings of investigations into the Deepwater Horizon tragedy


Canada Releases Tanker Safety System Report

The Government of Canada has released the second report of the independent Tanker Safety Expert Panel, “A Review of Canada’s Ship-source Spill Preparedness and Response: Setting the Course for the Future, Phase II – Requirements for the Arctic and for Hazardous and Noxious


U.S. Offshore Oil Drilling Rule Planned

Offshore fire courtesy CMMI

The United States is planning to impose a major new regulation on offshore oil and gas drilling to try to prevent the kind of explosions that caused the catastrophic BP Plc oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, the New York Times reported on Friday, citing Obama administration officials.


British Columbia: Oil Spill Response shows Unprepared for More Tankers

Image Courtesy of Seaside Signs

   British Columbian officials on Friday criticized the Canadian government's response to an oil spill in the waters around Vancouver, calling into question plans for new crude oil export pipelines in the Pacific Coast province.


Greenpeace Activists Refuse To Leave Shell Arctic Oil Rig

Greenpeace activists hang on a Shell oil rig on board the Blue Marlin. Photo by Greenpeace International

 "Shell wants activists off its rig. We want Shell out of the Arctic," says Annie Leonard, Greenpeace USA’s Executive Director.   Attorneys for Royal Dutch Shell PLC on Tuesday sued in federal court to remove six Greenpeace activists who boarded a vessel carrying an


Oil Under Ice

Helix Oil Skimmer being deployed off the USCGC HEALY.

The U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Center’s Cold Regions Research and Engineering Lab       How did an urgent requirement to build a road to Alaska end up helping to design submarines and to recover oil spills in the Arctic ice?


Marine Salvage & Oil Spill Response Insights

Photo: Global Diving & Salvage

Last month Maritime Reporter had the good fortune to receive insights from a trio of maritime salvage leaders – Paul Hankins, Tim Beaver & Jim Elliott – garnering insights on one of the most challenging and ever-changing sectors of the maritime market.  


Ships Collide on Lower Mississippi

Three ships were involved in a collision on the lower Mississippi River near Convent, Louisiana, Monday when a bulk carrier broke free from its mooring and drifted into a moored towing vessel and then an offloading tank ship. The U.S. Coast Guard is responding.  


Palfinger Chooses NAMJet Waterjets

Photos courtesy of Palfinger

Netherlands-based Palfinger Boats has launched the first of two Damen-designed FRSQ 1200 fast-rescue/oil response vessels.   Built in Harderwijk, Netherlands, the 12-meter (40-foot) vessel is powered by dual 440-horsepower (hp) Yanmar diesels mated to twin NAMJet TJ431 HH waterjets.


EALs & Oil Spill Remediation

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EALs & Oil Spill Remediation: The Effects of EALs on Oil Spill and Discharge Reporting and Remediation In the wake of increased environmental scrutiny and potentially expanding liability issues, oil spill remediation continues to be of great interest to marine operations


Resilience & the Maritime Industry

Dennis L. Bryan

Resilience is defined generally as the ability to recover quickly from setbacks.  Setbacks are inevitable.  Individuals and entities are best judged by their resilience – their ability to get back on track after experiencing a reversal. 






 
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