In an awkward decision, the US Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit ruled that the US Carriage of Goods at Sea Act (COGSA) applies to a claim by a shipper against a carrier for goods damaged at sea on a voyage from Le Havre to Montreal. The goods were being shipped from Blanquefort, France to Detroit. They traveled overland from Blanquefort to Le Havre, where they were loaded aboard ship. The through bill of lading called for the goods to be shipped overland from Montreal to Detroit. The court held that COGSA would not normally apply since no seaport of the United States was involved in the shipment. Thus, the court found that the Hague-Visby Rules would normally apply, since both France and Canada subscribed thereto. The court then determined that the matter was properly before the court on cross-motions for summary judgment since there were no genuine issues of material fact in dispute. The court then launched into an extended discussion of how poorly drafted the various documents were and how they were susceptible to different interpretations. Eventually, the court decided as a matter of law that the parties had contracted to apply COGSA to this shipment. The court then proceeded to interpret the definition of package in favor of the shipper. If nothing else, this is an example of how the use of unclear language in contracts can lead to unexpected results. Royal Insurance Co. v. Orient Overseas Container Line, No. 06-1199 (6th Cir., January 30, 2008)(HK Law)
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit ruled that inclusion in a bill of lading of a clause providing for U.S. jurisdiction does not require application of the U.S. Carriage of Goods by Sea Act (COGSA) where the goods were shipped from Spain to China and the General Paramount Clause provided for application of the Hague-Visby Rules. In the instant case, the goods were damaged en route and the shipper brought suit against the vessel and the carrier
The North of England P&I club has warned its members to keep a closer watch on draught surveys to avoid costly cargo shortage claims. According to Tony Baker, head of North of England’s loss-prevention department, ‘We have recently witnessed a number of incidents where draught surveys have been manipulated to show short delivery of bulk cargoes. Some of the resulting shortage claims have involved large sums of money particularly as the values of some cargoes have risen
The UK P&I Club’s publication ‘Hellas Hilights - Issue 28’ recorded Rod Lingard's attendance at the green4Sea Forum and his address on 'The Legal and Insurance Aspects of Slow-Steaming, excerpted as follows: What’s the problem? On one side the owner has an obligation to follow the charterer’s slow-steaming instructions under the charterparty yet on the other the owner has the usually implied obligation under the Bill of Lading to proceed with due dispatch
Northrop Grumman Corporation has signed a cooperative agreement with Kockums AB and its parent company, Howaldtswerke Deutsche Werft AG (HDW), under which Kockums will join a team assembled by Northrop Grumman's Ship Systems sector to compete for the U.S. Navy's Focused Mission Vessel Study. This study is expected to result in the development and construction of a Littoral Combat Ship (LCS), one element of the DD(X) family of surface combatants planned for construction by the Navy during the
Reuters - Costa Rica will ask the International Court of Justice to settle a decade-old maritime border dispute with Nicaragua related to potential oil concessions, President Laura Chinchilla said on Monday. Costa Rica plans to file a complaint with the court at The Hague on Tuesday in which it will ask the court to determine its borders with Nicaragua in the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean, she said in a statement.
Hollandsche Beton Group (HBG) reportedly won a $14 million order from Hague-based Elf Petroland BV to design and build an unmanned offshore gas platform.
China has to comply with any ruling on competing territorial claims with the Philippines in the South China Sea even if it will not take part in case before Hague court, opined Philippine judge, reports Bloomberg. Philippine Supreme Court Justice Antonio Carpio said that it doesn’t matter if China doesn’t appear, if the tribunal finds that there is jurisdiction, the tribunal will proceed. His country doesn’t want anyone
A British merchant vessel, listing in rough seas in the Baltic, was escorted to safety by a Swedish coast guard vessel. The crew of the Scot Isles sent out a distress call Christmas Eve close to the Swedish island of Gotland, reports UPI. A rescue helicopter was sent from Visby and remained on the scene until a Swedish Coast Guard ship arrived. The Scot Isles' captain decided to return to Latvia and turned down an offer to evacuate his vessel
Greenpeace International executive director Kumi Naidoo has written to President Vladimir Putin offering to travel to Moscow as early as possible to meet with the Russian President, in an effort to end the continued incarceration of 28 peaceful activists and two freelance journalists. In the letter, delivered today to the Russian embassy in The Hague, Naidoo offers to move his life to Russia and act as a guarantor for the good conduct of the activists if they are released on bail.
Obama: China forcing countries into subordinate positions; China hits back, accuses U.S. of throwing its weight around. U.S. President Barack Obama said Washington is concerned China is using its "sheer size and muscle" to push around smaller nations in the South China Sea
European Union law enforcement agency Europol has launched Joint Operational Team (JOT) Mare, in a bid to combat irregular migration through the Mediterranean Sea. Hosted at Europol headquarters in The Hague, JOT Mare will combine Europol’s intelligence resources and the EU
Dr. Cleopatra Doumbia-Henry has been appointed president to head the World Maritime University (WMU), as announced by the International Maritime Organization (IMO) and university. Dr. Doumbia-Henry will be the seventh WMU president and will be the first female in the role.
Port operator APM Terminals, a unit of shipping and oil conglomerate A.P. Moller-Maersk , said on Thursday it had signed a memorandum of understanding with the government of Ghana to expand its Tema Port. APM Terminals said the agreement included a "private investment" in excess of $1
With just one month to go to the start of the first leg of the Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15, GAC Pindar is in the thick of ensuring the provision of a seamless logistics support package for the 12th edition of the race that has been nicknamed the 'Everest of Sailing'.
The Philippines is pushing for a meeting among four Southeast Asian nations with conflicting claims to waters in the South China Sea so that they can hammer out a common stand in dealings with China, Manila's foreign minister said on Friday.
A U.N. tribunal has awarded Bangladesh nearly four-fifths of an area sprawling over 25,000 sq km (9,700 sq miles) in the Bay of Bengal, ending a dispute over a sea border with India that has ruffled ties between the neighbours for more than three decades.
China, involved in a growing dispute with its neighbours over the energy-rich South China Sea, wants to promote peaceful development of the oceans, Premier Li Keqiang said, warning conflicts in the past had only brought "disaster for humanity".
China said on Tuesday that it wanted to counter Vietnam's "slander" to the world about what was happening in disputed areas of the South China Sea, after Beijing asked the United Nations to circulate documents outlining its position.
Territorial disputes over tiny islands and reefs in the South China Sea are poisoning relations between China and its neighbours in Southeast Asia. "In recent months, China has undertaken destabilising, unilateral actions asserting its claims in the South China Sea," U.S
China on Wednesday rejected an arbitration tribunal's ruling giving it six months to respond to a case filed by the Philippines over disputed waters, saying it has no plans to take part. China claims almost the entire South China Sea, rejecting rival claims to parts from Vietnam, the Philippines
Vietnam says will "resolutely defend its sovereignty." China says Vietnam making "irresponsible accusations" against it; Philippines submitted arbitration case against China in March. Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung said his government was considering various
The families of four British sailors missing since their yacht capsized in the Atlantic Ocean three days ago appealed to the U.S. Coast Guard on Monday to resume its search. Last contact with the missing yacht, Cheeki Rafiki, was on Friday after it ran into difficulties about 1,000 miles (1
London-listed explorer Wessex Exploration has signed a heads of agreement to acquire Hague & London Oil (Halo) which holds a prospective asset in the Philippines. Consideration for the acquisition will be satisfied by the issue to the vendors of 241m ordinary shares in the company
The European Union imposed sanctions on Monday on a top aide to Russian President Vladimir Putin and the commander of Russian paratroopers as well as two confiscated Crimean energy companies, raising pressure on Moscow over its actions in Ukraine.