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Off Japan

Vessel Sinks, Eight Drown

At least eight crew members of a Panama-registered cargo ship drowned after the vessel sank off Japan on Sunday, the Japanese coastguard said on Monday. The 3,561-ton White Koowa, with a crew of two Japanese and 12 Filipinos, was carrying 3,000 tons of nickel ore when it sank off Kochi, about 335 miles southwest of Tokyo. Five crew were rescued on Monday and one Filipino crew member remained unaccounted for after the coastguard dispatched patrol boats and aircraft to the scene on Monday. The dead included the ship's captain and chief engineer, both Japanese. It was not known immediately why the ship went down. The White Koowa, which left Indonesia on December 26, had been due to arrive at a southwestern Japanese port on Monday. - (Reuters)


Korean Ship Feared Sunk Off Japan

Rescue officials found a body during a search for a Korean ship missing off southwestern Japan, raising fears the cargo vessel foundered in heavy seas with 28 crew on board, Japan's coast guard said. "Given the facts, we have to conclude that the ship has probably sunk," a coast guard spokesman said. The 22,725-ton Korean-registered Honghae Sanyo vanished with a cargo of gravel in heavy winds and high seas late on Tuesday after failing to pick up a navigator en route to a port in Hyogo


First Japanese Offshore Wind Farm

The Japanese government says its first electricity-generating wind farm to be built off the country’s coast will be ready to start in January 2013 According to 'The Japan Daily Press' the Government’s feed-in tariffs have just gone into effect this month , making electricity generated from renewable resources like solar and wind to be sold at higher prices for the next 20 years. This wind farm, along with announced plans for the construction of Japan’s largest solar panel


Drifting Fishermen Rescued by MOL LNG Carrier

Senshu Maru, Photo courtesy of MOL

Three Castaways Rescued Safely off Indonesia. Mitsui O.S.K. Lines, Ltd. (MOL; President: Koichi Muto) has announced that on October 6, 2014, the MOL-operated/managed LNG carrier Senshu Maru founded drifting castaways in the Celebes Sea off Indonesia, and was able to safely rescue three Indonesian fishermen. The rescue went as follows: At 14:15 (all times were in Japan time) on October 6, 2014, the Senshu Maru, sailing from the port of Bontang, Indonesia


Six Countries Plan Asian Naval Security Drill

Reuters has reported that six countries including Japan, China, South Korea and the United States are to hold a series of joint maritime exercises, just weeks after Tokyo and Seoul were locked in a tense stand-off over some tiny disputed islands. Japan, China, South Korea, the United States, Canada and Russia will launch naval exercises in the Japan Sea and East China Sea to halt the spread of weapons of mass destruction, starting on Saturday, Japanese Coastguard officials said.


U.S. Navy Repositions Ships Off Japan, Contamination Detected

Photo courtesy US Navy

The U.S. 7th Fleet has temporarily repositioned its ships and aircraft away from the Fukushima Dai-Ichi Nuclear Power Plant after detecting low level contamination in the air and on its aircraft operating in the area. The source of this airborne radioactivity is a radioactive plume released from the Fukushima Dai-Ichi Nuclear Power Plant.    For perspective, the maximum potential radiation dose received by any ship's force personnel aboard the ship when it passed through the area


MOL Bulker Rescues Two from Disabled Yacht

MOL-operated Bulk Carrier Rescues 2 from Yacht adrift off Australia.   Mitsui O.S.K. Lines, Ltd. (MOL; President: Koichi Muto) today announced that the MOL-operated bulk carrier Yahagi Maru rescued two sailors from the yacht Mehitable, which was adrift at sea approximately 350km off Brisbane, Australia.On the morning of June 5 (local time), the Yagagi Maru, which was under way from Japan toward Newcastle, New South Wales


Japanese Navy Leaves for Anti-Piracy Mission

According to a report from Bloomberg, two Japanese naval vessels set sail on March 14 to combat piracy off the coast of Somalia. The two warships, each carrying about 200 crew members and two helicopters, will escort vessels carrying Japanese cargo or passengers through the Gulf of Aden, said a spokesman at Japan’s defense ministry on the condition of anonymity. (Source: Bloomberg)


Bulker Being Towed Away from New Zealand

The New Zealand Maritime Safety Authority (MSA) has stated that the bulker Taharoa Express is being towed away from the Northland coastline, after being at anchor off the coast of Dargaville for the past two days as a result of engine problems. The towage passage plan calls for the ship to be towed 200 miles offshore where it will be met by a larger tug for towage to Japan.


This Day in Naval History – April 14

1898 - Commissioning of first Post Civil War hospital ship, USS Solace 1969 - North Korean aircraft shoots down Navy EC-121 reconnaissance aircraft from VQ-1 over the Sea of Japan 1988 - USS Samuel B. Roberts struck Iranian mine off Qatar 1989 - First Navy ship arrives on scene to assist in Exxon Valdez oil spill cleanup (Source: Navy News Service)


China Says Hopes New Japanese Carrier Doesn't Mark Return to Militarism

China said on Thursday that it hoped the entry into service of Japan's second big helicopter carrier, the Kaga, did not mean a return to the country's past militaristic history.   The ship, along with its sister the Izumo, gives Japan's military greater ability to deploy beyond its shores


Thessaloniki Port Workers Plan Stoppage to Protest Port Sale

Photo: Thessaloniki Port Authority

Workers at Greece's second-biggest port, Thessaloniki Port, will walk off their job for a few hours on Wednesday to protest the port's sale, a key condition of the country's international bailout.   The sale was launched in 2014 but has been plagued by delays and political resistance


China Pledges Firm Response to Japan's S.China Sea Visit

China on Thursday pledged a firm response if Japan stirs up trouble in the South China Sea, after Reuters reported on a Japanese plan to send its largest warship to the disputed waters.   The Izumo helicopter carrier, commissioned only two years ago, will make stops in Singapore, Indonesia


Will LNG Remain a Key Energy Source?

© phonix_a / Adobe Stock

Industry expert predicts LNG will remain a key energy source; energy authority expect that Japan’s reliance on LNG will continue to grow   Japan imported 8.3 million metric tons of LNG in January, an increase of 1.06 million metric tons compared to the previous year


Somali Pirates Demand Ransom for Aris 13

File photo: Euronav

The EU anti-piracy operation in the Horn of Africa  region said that  Pirates are demanding a ransom for the release of the Comoros-flagged oil tanker Aris 13 seized off the coast of Somalia and the crew is being held captive, the AP reported.  


China Asks: Why is Japanese Warship Going to South China Sea?

The Bridge of JDS Kirishima in JMSDF Yokosuka Naval Base, Japan. She is a Kongo-class guided missile destroyer in the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force. CREDIT: JPAaron AdobeStock

China said on Tuesday it was waiting for an official word on why Japan plans to send its largest warship on a three-month tour through the South China Sea, but that it hopes Japan can be responsible.   China claims almost all the disputed waters and its growing military presence has fuelled


Japan Plans to Send Largest Warship to South China Sea

Japan plans to dispatch its largest warship on a three-month tour through the South China Sea beginning in May, three sources said, in its biggest show of naval force in the region since World War Two.   China claims almost all the disputed waters and its growing military presence has


N.Korean Ship sinks off China, All Rescued

A North Korean cargo vessel called Kum San sank off the east coast of China early on March 9 after colliding with a Chinese fuel tanker, which rescued 27 crew members, the Ministry of Transport said in a statement on Monday.   The collision took place near the port of Lianyuanhang in


US Navy, JMSDF Complete MultiSail 17

Photo:  United States Navy

 Commander, Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 15 and the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) completed the annual bilateral training exercise MultiSail 17, March 10.   The six-day exercise consisted of surface action group maneuvers, anti-submarine training


Asia Tankers-VLCC Rates Falling as Tonnage Outweighs Demand

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock)

Freight rates for very large crude carriers (VLCCs), which fell to five-month lows this week, are set to drop further as excess tonnage and an absence of port congestion weigh on the market, brokers said.   Supertanker charter rates, which are already below the breakeven levels for ship


SM Line Launches New Shipping Services

Photo: SM KLC

 South Korea's new container carrier, SM Line, which is built mainly on the remains of collapsed Hanjin Shipping, plans to kick off operations with as many as nine routes this year.    According to Yonhap,  it will begin its services to Thailand, Vietnam


Odfjell Orders Two Chemical Tankers

Odfjell SE has announced the signing of long term charter agreements for two chemical tankers with stainless steel cargo tanks, for construction in Japan.   The agreement includes two vessels of 35,500 dw tonnes and 28 stainless steel cargo tanks


Tanker Market: Sun Sets on Japan Dirty Imports

Graph: Gibson Shipbrokers

 The Japanese refining industry has been experiencing challenging circumstances for a number of years, with significant rationalisation of refining capacity, according to Weekly Tanker Market Report by Gibson Shipbrokers.   Reform in the Japanese refining sector is not a particularly


Asia Tankers-VLCC Rates to Slide Further

File Image (CREDIT: EuroNav)

Around 30 VLCC charters in Feb so far, versus 50 last month. About 40 refinery facilities to close for maintenance.   Freight rates for very large crude carriers (VLCCs), which fell to multi-week lows on Thursday, could slip further as refinery maintenance in Asia weighs on cargo volumes


Philippines: Japan Offers Anti-Piracy Help

Japan has offered to send patrol ships to deal with a growing piracy threat in the southern Philippine waters bordering Indonesia and Malaysia, a senior Philippine defence official said on Tuesday.   A surge in piracy off parts of the southern Philippines is forcing ship-owners to divert






 
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