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Off Florida

This Day in Naval History – July 20

1846 - First visit of U.S. warships (USS Columbus and USS Vincennes) to Japan is unsuccessful in negotiating a treaty. 1960 - In first launch of Polaris missile, USS George Washington (SSBN 598) successfully fires 2 operational Polaris missiles while submerged off Florida. 1964 - Four Navy divers enter Project SEALAB I capsule moored 192 feet on the ocean floor off Bermuda for 11 day experiment. 1969 - Former Navy pilot Neil Armstrong is first man to set foot on the moon. While taking the first step, he said, "That's one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind." Armstrong was Commander of Apollo 11 which during its 8 day mission landed on the Sea of Tranquility. Recovery was by HS-4 helicopters from USS Hornet (CVS-12). (Source: Navy News Service)

Moratorium Off Florida Coast

In addition to the annual Central Gulf lease sales, the Minerals Management Service, part of the U.S. Interior Department, also holds an annual lease sale in the Western Gulf. Lease sales in the Central Gulf typically attract more bids than those in the Western Gulf because the region is richer in oil and gas and more discoveries have been made there. Shallow water drew most attention in the latest Central Gulf lease sale, with bids received on 338 blocks in depths up to 656 ft.

New Bill Brings Drilling to Florida Coast

New legislation that would bring natural gas drilling 20 miles off coastlines in Florida and other states is scheduled to be heard by a U.S. House Committee in Washington, D.C., according to AP reports. The bill is the latest in a series of attempts to expand offshore drilling due to price increases and shortages linked to fuel supply disruptions caused by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in the Gulf of Mexico. Drilling opponents so far have been able to beat back attempts to lift presidential

Bollinger Completes Repowering, Modernization of M/V Florida

Bollinger Shipyards, Inc., has completed the conversion of the Crescent Towing tug, FLORIDA, from a single engine to a twin-engine boat with 4,000 HP. It is the first of eight Crescent Towing 105-foot sister ships to undergo the same major conversion at Bollinger’s Algiers (New Orleans) repair and conversion shipyard. The FLORIDA’s old engine was replaced with two Caterpillar 3512B engines coupled to Reintjes WAF 673 reduction gears driving 83-inch Bollinger stainless steel propellers

Ferry Collision Kills One

A ferry collided with a recreational boat on Monday in heavy fog off southwest Florida, killing one person and injuring two others aboard the smaller vessel, the U.S. Coast Guard said. The ferry boat Atlantis was making a morning run in the Gulf of Mexico from Fort Myers, Florida, to the Florida Keys when it collided with a 21-ft. (6.4-m) pleasure craft about 9 miles from shore, said Coast Guard Petty Officer Dana Warr.

Coast Guard Postpones Pursuing Refunds For Faulty Ships

The U.S. Coast Guard said it will temporarily stop its review and suspend its pursuit of a $96.1m refund for faulty ships built by Lockheed Martin Corp. (LMT) and Northrop Grumman Corp. (NOC), pending a Justice Department investigation.  The Justice Department and the Department of Homeland Security Office of the Inspector General are investigating the Coast Guard's Deepwater contracts, including the eight, 123-ft. patrol boats found to have structural problems, the AP reported.

MV Florida get new Cat Power at Bollinger

The Crescent Towing tug Florida undergoes sea trials on the Mississippi River at New Orleans following repowering from single screw to double screw and the replacement of her pilothouse with new equipment and greater visibility provided by new lower exhaust stacks. Florida is the first of eight Crescent tugs to receive the conversion at Bollinger Shipyards, Inc., Algiers (New Orleans) shipyard. Bollinger Shipyards recently completed the conversion of the Crescent Towing tug, Florida

G&G Shipping Orders 190-ft Landing Craft

Photo courtesy G&G Shipping

G&G Shipping announces that it has signed and awarded a contract for new construction of a shallow draft 190’ roll-on, roll-off, landing craft to be built by St. Johns Shipbuilding in Palatka, Florida. Mike Grandonico, President of G&G Shipping, states, “We work to continuously offer the best, most reliable, on-time shipping service for our customers throughout the Caribbean and this new vessel will allow us greater capability to expand this quality service to our customers

Coast Guard, BSEE: Repsol Rig Review Complete

Personnel from the U.S. Coast Guard and the U.S. Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement completed a review of the mobile offshore drilling unit Scarabeo 9, Monday, off the coast of Trinidad and Tobago.   The review followed an invitation from the vessel’s operator, Repsol. While aboard the Scarabeo 9, personnel reviewed vessel construction, drilling equipment, and safety systems – including lifesaving and firefighting equipment

Family Finds Sunken Treasure Off Florida Coast

A Florida family scavenging for sunken treasure on a shipwreck has found the missing piece of a 300-year-old gold filigree necklace sacred to Spanish priests, officials said on Tuesday. Eric Schmitt, a professional salvager, was scavenging with his parents when he found the crumpled, square-shaped ornament on a leisure trip to hunt for artifacts in the wreckage of a convoy of 11 ships that sank in 1715 during a hurricane off central Florida's east coast.

Tropical Storm Kate Halts El Faro Salvage Operation

Image: NOAA

Salvage operations for the sunken cargo ship El Faro were suspended on Friday due to Tropical Storm Kate, which moved through the Bahamas with winds of 45 miles (75 km) per hour, U.S. authorities said.   The El Faro sank off the southern Bahamas in a hurricane last month with the loss of 33

Barnett Promoted to Director, Holland America Line

Amy Barnett Director Division Sales

Holland America Line has promoted Amy Barnett to the position of division sales director for the East.   In her new role, she will be responsible for planning, organizing and directing sales programs, as well as analyzing and implementing strategic and tactical initiatives to increase sales

USCG Offload $ 17 Mln Cocaine

A Coast Guardsman offloads cocaine at Coast Guard Sector Miami Beach, Fla., Nov. 20, 2015. The HNLMS Friesland, an offshore patrol vessel from the Royal Netherlands Navy, interdicted a go-fast vessel with four suspected smu

  Coast Guardsmen on the Coast Guard Cutter Bernard C. Webber offloaded approximately 515 kilograms of cocaine interdicted in the Caribbean Sea as part of Operation Caribbean Venture worth an estimated wholesale value of $17 million at Coast Guard Base Miami Beach, Florida, Friday.

Royston Appoints New US Distributor

Photo: Royston

Diesel power engineering specialist Royston has appoint a new U.S.-based distributor, citing growing interest in its advanced Enginei marine fuel management and monitoring systems.   The Houma, La.-based Bow 2 Stern Technologies LLC will provide sales and technical service support for the

U.S. Investigators Head to Florida to Probe Ship Lost in Hurricane

El Faro (Photo: NTSB)

Federal safety investigators traveled to Florida on Tuesday to investigate the U.S. container ship lost at sea after being hit by powerful Hurricane Joaquin, leaving one person confirmed dead and 32 others missing. The team from the National Transportation Safety Board left Washington for

Search for Ship Lost in Hurricane a Big Challenge


Deep seas may complicate efforts to find the sunken U.S. cargo ship lost off the Bahamas during Hurricane Joaquin, a federal safety investigator said, as a search and rescue mission for 32 missing crew stretched into a sixth day. A U.S. National Transportation Safety Board team arrived on

White House Backs El Faro Investigation

President Barack Obama (White House photo)

President Barack Obama on Wednesday offered condolences to the families of the 33 sailors presumed to have lost their lives aboard cargo ship El Faro which is believed to have sunk amid Hurricane Joaquin last week.    The investigation into the incident will receive the

Collision Course with a Hurricane: How Doomed US Ship Met its End

El Faro (File photo: TOTE)

The ill-fated U.S.-flagged El Faro cargo ship sunk by Hurricane Joaquin was sailing at near full speed into the center of the storm before it lost propulsion amid mountainous waves and brutal winds, according to ship tracking data. The data on Thomson Reuters Eikon raises questions about the

US Shipowner Creates Fund for Families of Missing El Faro Crew

El Faro (File photo: TOTE)

The owners of the cargo ship El Faro that sank after it was trapped in the path of Hurricane Joaquin off the Bahamas last week announced the creation of a family relief fund on Friday to support the 33 mostly-American families of the crew.  

USCG Repatriates 12 Migrants

Coast Guard Cutter Confidence

  The crew of the Coast Guard Cutter Confidence repatriated 12 Cuban migrants to Bahia de Cabañas, Cuba, Saturday. While on routine patrol a Coast Guard aircraft spotted a vessel with migrants aboard south of Marquesas Keys, Florida, Wednesday

Family of Sunken El Faro Crewman Files $100 Mln Lawsuit

El Faro (File photo: TOTE)

A lawyer for the family of a missing crew member from the El Faro cargo ship, which sank off the Bahamas in a hurricane two weeks ago, said he filed a $100 million lawsuit on Wednesday against the owners of the ship.   The lawsuit on behalf of the estate of Lonnie Jordan

Arctic Oil Drilling: Why Does U.S. End It?

Image: An oil drilling rig operated by Royal Dutch Shell ran aground on a pristine wildlife-rich island in Alaska in 2013. Credit: Panda.Org

The Obama administration has taken steps to keep drill rigs out of Alaska's northern ocean for a decade or more. The sudden of turnabouts is attributed to slowing down of economy. The U.S. Department of Interior announced that it is canceling two lease sales and will not extend current leases for

Wreckage of El Faro Believed Located

Cargo ship El Faro Photo USCG

   Wreckage believed to be of the cargo ship El Faro, which was lost in Hurricane Joaquin in a sinking that claimed the lives of its 33 crew members, was discovered on Saturday at a depth of 15,000 feet, U.S. officials said in a statement.

US Navy Salvage Team Seeks to Confirm El Faro Wreckage

El Faro (File photo: TOTE)

A U.S. Navy salvage team prepared on Sunday to launch a remotely operated submersible to confirm that wreckage discovered near the Bahamas was that of the cargo ship El Faro, lost in a hurricane last month along with its 33 crew members.  

Wreckage Confirmed to Be El Faro

El Faro (File photo: TOTE)

Wreckage found on the ocean bottom off the Bahamas has been confirmed by the National Transportation Safety Board to be the lost cargo ship El Faro, which sank with 33 crew aboard October 1.   Wreckage consistent with the 790-foot El Faro was discovered upright and intact by a U.S

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