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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


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.


Containers Overboard off Florida

Barge container ship, Columbia Elizabeth, is towed to Port of Palm Beach, Dec. 6, 2015. While enroute to Puerto Rico, several cargo containers fell overboard off the coast of Port Canaveral, Fla. (U.S. Coast Guard photo)

Multiple containers have fallen into the sea from a barge off the coast between Port Canaveral, Fla., and West Palm Beach, Fla., Sunday. U.S. Coast Guard crews are responding   The U.S. flagged 136-foot Capt Latham was transiting to Puerto Rico as it tugged a 340-foot barge, Columbia Elizabeth, when crew aboard noticed several cargo containers hanging over the port side of the barge and believed more had fallen into the water while in transit, the Coast Guard said


Hapag-Lloyd Adds Port Everglades to MGX Service

Starting in June 2016, shipping company Hapag-Lloyd will add a new call in Port Everglades to its Mediterranean Gulf Express (MGX) service.   Florida International Terminal (FIT), operated by SAAM since 2005 in Port Everglades – Fort Lauderdale, Fla., will add a new service


Port Everglades Equipped for SOLAS Weight Verification

Terminal operators at Broward County's Port Everglades say they are already equipped to help shippers handle the new international container weight verification requirements that go into effect on July 1, 2016.   Certified scales are available at several locations throughout Port Everglades


Maritime Leaders Convene in the Caribbean

Caribbean maritime leaders meet to discuss industry trends, challenges and opportunities   Representatives from all aspects of the maritime shipping industry met in Cocoa Beach, Fla., May 16-18 for the Caribbean Shipping Associations’ (CSA) Shipping Executives Conference. 


FIO’s New Research Vessel Enters Build Phase

Construction of FIO’s new research vessel is expected to be completed in summer 2017 (Image: Boksa Marine Design)

 The 78’ research vessel designed and engineered by Boksa Marine Design (BMD) in 2015 is headed to the building phase beginning in June.   BMD contracted with the Florida Institute of Oceanography (FIO) in February 2015 for the design of a new vessel to replace its current


US Coast Guard Wraps up First Phase of El Faro Disaster Probe

El Faro (File photo: TOTE)

The U.S. investigation into the deadly sinking of the El Faro cargo ship during a hurricane last fall shifted direction on Friday, as the Coast Guard wrapped up its initial public hearings on the accident that killed all 33 people onboard.  


Lindsay Blee Expands into the Americas

Lindsay Blee’s new U.S. office in Florida will serve North, Central and South America   Independent international bunker broker Lindsay Blee announced that it is expanding its brokering operations into the Americas with a new operation called Lindsay Blee Americas (LBA) based in


Kirby Buys Seacor’s Inland Tank Barge Fleet

Photo: Kirby Corporation

 Kirby Corporation has agreed to purchase the inland tank barge fleet of SEACOR Holdings Inc. from subsidiaries of Seacor for approximately $88 million in cash. The asset purchase will consist of 27 inland 30,000 barrel tank barges and 13 inland towboats, plus one 30


Sea Level Rise Projected to Displace 13 million in U.S. by 2100

The number of people who could be displaced in U.S. coastal regions due to rising sea levels this century as a result of climate change is much higher than previously thought, with more than 13 million Americans at risk with a 6-foot (1.8 meters) rise including 6 million in Florida


Saudi Aramco, Shell to Break up, Divide Motiva Assets

image: Royal Dutch Shell

Shell and Saudi Aramco on Wednesday announced plans to break up Motiva Enterprises LLC and divide up the assets, almost two decades after the U.S. oil refining and marketing joint venture was formed. Under the terms of a non-binding letter of intent, Saudi Aramco will retain the Motiva name


Shipbuilding: General Dynamics NASSCO Wins Navy Deal

General Dynamics NASSCO has been awarded a contract by the U.S. Navy to support amphibious warfare and surface combatant ships home-ported in the Port of San Diego. The indefinite delivery, indefinite quantity contract has a total potential value of $1.32B among three awardees.


US, Cuba Open Doors to Marine Science Cooperation

Photo: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

 When Barack Obama became the first president to visit Cuba since Calvin Coolidge, his visit highlighted not only a new course in international relations, but showcased on-going scientific collaborations with the country only 90 miles off the Florida coast.  


Clough Wins Woodside Contract

Image: Woodside Energy Ltd

 Perth-based Clough has been awarded an engineering services contract by LNG operator Woodside Energy.    The contract covers the full spectrum of engineering services including concept and feasibility studies, front-end engineering and design (FEED)


Fugitives Rescued by Disney Cruise Ship in Waters near Cuba

Disney Fantasy cruise ship. Photo: Disney Cruise Line

 The Disney Fantasy, a cruise ship owned and operated by Disney Cruise Line, part of The Walt Disney Company,  rescued three people clinging to a capsized boat near Cuba late last week who turned out to be fugitives.   The three were rescued by the Disney cruise liner and turned


US Aims to Recover El Faro VDR in Next Few Months

El Faros voyage data recorder next to the ships mast on ocean floor (Photo: NTSB)

The U.S. National Transportation Safety Board hopes to recover the voyage data recorder from the cargo ship El Faro, which sank during a hurricane killing all 33 crew on board, over the next two to three months, an agency official said on Thursday.


Eastern Delivers 63rd Towboat for Florida Marine

M/V Lawrence Campbell (Photo: Eastern Shipbuilding Group, Inc.)

Eastern Shipbuilding Group, Inc. delivered the M/V Lawrence Campbell (Hull 193) on April 12, 2016, the 63rd 90-foot inland towboat to Florida Marine Transporters, LLC of Mandeville, La., continuing its ongoing newbuild program.   It was in early 2015, when Florida Marine Transporters






 
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