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Ship Traffic

NOAA Makes Recommendations to Reduce Collisions with Whales

NOAA this week urged ship captains to use new recommended routes when entering or leaving the Florida ports of Jacksonville and Fernandina, and Brunswick, Ga., as well as in Cape Cod Bay off Massachusetts. These new routes are expected to reduce the chances of ship strikes with endangered right whales. The recommended routes take into account safety and economic impact to the mariner. Although the routes are voluntary, they will appear on both electronic and paper NOAA nautical charts no later than November 30. The new designations will help mariners decrease whale strikes by reducing vessel activity in areas frequented by ships and whales. North Atlantic right whales are among the most endangered marine mammal populations in the world, and are highly vulnerable to ship collisions. Pregnant females and females with calves are known to have been struck by ships along the east coast in recent years. The right whale population is small--around 300--and many scientists believe recovery has stalled, making the few reproductively active females even more important to population recovery. Right whales typically travel south from waters off Canada and New England to calving and nursery areas off Florida and Georgia in winter, traversing areas frequented by large ships. Females and their calves then return to more northerly feeding grounds, aggregating in Cape Cod Bay during the spring, also an area with substantial ship traffic.


Bisso Marine Salvages Crewboat

Bisso Marine salvaged a 110-ft. crewboat in Sabine Pass, TX. The crewboat which was involved in collision with a ship rolled over and sank in approximately 50 ft. of water with the stern of the capsized vessel ultimately resting on the bottom and the bow keel floating above the surface. The sunken crewboat was positioned in the middle of the channel such that the Sabine Pass was closed by the USCG creating a problem for inbound and out bound ship traffic whose cargos are loaded and


Muddy Footprints: Satellite's View of Ship Pollution

Global NOx Map: Image credit NASA

Long tracks of elevated nitrogen dioxide (NO2) levels show up along certain shipping routes when viewed from NASA's Aura satellite. For more than a decade, scientists have observed “ship tracks” in natural-color satellite imagery of the ocean. These bright, linear trails amidst the cloud layers are created by particles and gases from ships. They are a visible manifestation of pollution from ship exhaust, and scientists can now see that ships have a more subtle, almost invisible


North Atlantic Right Whale Management Measures

In August 2001, the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) proposed ship traffic management measures as a means of reducing the incidence of ship strikes and resulting fatalities of the North Atlantic Right Whale. There are approximately 350 surviving Right Whales, and they are considered to be the most endangered of the large mammals. Through federal regulation, the NMFS implemented a "mandatory ship reporting system" to increase the industry's awareness of the problem and encourage the


VTMS Indonesia Contract for Transas

Traffic Control Station: Photo credit Transas

Transas Marine Pacific & local representative win contracts to supply & install Vessel Traffic Management Systems (VTMS) for Samarinda and Banjarmasin ports. In addition to this, Transas will upgrade the current VTS system in the Semarang port with a fully redundant AIS Base Station T214. The new VTS systems will be based on Transas flexible and accurate Navi-Monitor solution developed for monitoring and surveillance purposes


Bar Pilots, New Orleans, Choose Raven TMS

Raven Aerostar say that the Associated Branch Pilots of the Port of New Orleans (Bar Pilots) has selected its Traffic Management System. The system provides increased situational intelligence for Port of New Orleans ship pilots. Raven Aerostar's marine navigation aid systems are used by ship pilots in over a dozen ports in the U.S. The Bar Pilots recently ordered 35 Raven Traffic Management Systems, including the company's latest rate of turn sensor, Revolve.


Arctic Nautical Charts: NOAA Plans Updates

Two NOAA Corps Officers aboard Fairweather: Photo credit NOAA

Less sea ice and more ship traffic means new charts needed for safety. NOAA’s Office of Coast Survey has issued an updated Arctic Nautical Charting Plan , as a major effort to improve inadequate chart coverage for Arctic areas experiencing increasing vessel traffic due to ice diminishment. NOAA plans to create 14 new charts to complement the existing chart coverage. For example, seven of the charts will complete chart coverage from the Alaska Peninsula to Cape Lisburne at the edge of


Lockheed Martin System To Monitor Gulf of Suez Safety

Lockheed Martin has completed the final Site Acceptance Test (SAT) for the Gulf of Suez Vessel Traffic Information Management System (VTIMS), which will monitor and control ship traffic in all major port and harbor waters. The $50 million maritime safety system is the foundation of the Arab Republic of Egypt's total port management program. Work boats and fishing vessels traverse the 175-nautical-mile-long Gulf along with huge oil tankers and boats full of tourists visiting the famous Red


Texas City "Y" incident: Latest Update

Entrance to Texas City Dike: Photo in public domain

The Coast Guard informs that it continues clean up operations in the Port of Houston/Galveston after having authorized limited marine traffic in the safety zone for commercial ship traffic, Tuesday. The Port Coordination Team is prioritizing ships for transit through the channel. Barges are being allowed to transit through the Houston Ship Channel and on the Intracoastal Waterway, after assessment teams deemed the channel clear.


Northwest Passage Wrecks Hunt Launched

Franklins Lost Expedition Map:Image credit Wiki CCL

The Canadian government launches its largest search yet for the lost ships of Sir John Franklin's doomed 1845 quest for the Northwest Passage. This year's search, led by Parks Canada, is the fourth government-led expedition over the past five years, and is by far the biggest, involving a much larger alliance of federal departments and other public and private interests. A previous large-scale search for the Franklin ships was launched by National Defence in 1967 as part of Canada's


Ship Crashes into Mansion in the Strait of Istanbul

Ethem Pertev Mansion on the Bosporus (Photo credit: DHA)

 Majed and Randy,  Sierra Leone-registered dry cargo ship collided into a Ethem Pertev's water-front mansion located on the Bosporus in Istanbul's Kanlıca neighborhood. Luckily no one was injured in the incident.   The accident happened due to a malfunction in the steering


US Navy Promotes Security in South China Sea

U.S. Navy photo

The U.S. Navy reports its Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Lassen (DDG 82) has continued to patrol the South China Sea since the end of May 2015 in support of security and stability in the region, a major sea line of worldwide communication for commercial shipping traffic  


Container Equipment Costs at Record Low

Source: Drewry Maritime Research

Low material costs and stable demand has driven the price of new container equipment down to record lows where it is forecast to stay, according to the latest edition of the Container Census report published by global shipping consultancy Drewry.  


Panama Canal Plans LNG Terminal

USTDA is supporting a study on an LNG Terminal with the Panama Canal Authority.  Photo Credit: USTDA

 The Panama Canal Authority (ACP), which administers the canal, is looking at building a Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) import terminal near the Canal.   The ACP has been awarded a US Trade and Development Agency grant to help fund a feasibility study for the project


US Backs Study into Panama Canal LNG Terminal

The U.S. Trade and Development Agency informs it has awarded a grant to the Panama Canal Authority (ACP) to support the planning of a liquefied natural gas (LNG) import terminal.   The Panama Canal is expected to handle significant LNG tanker traffic upon completion of the canal expansion


Channel Tunnel Traffic Resumes After Strike

Traffic through the Channel Tunnel linking Britain and France has resumed, a spokesman for operator Eurotunnel said on Wednesday. "Traffic is totally normal in both directions since last night at 1830 (French time)," he said.


Two Tugboats Capsize on St. Lawrence River

Photo: LinkedIn

 Two tugboats capsized and sank close to each other on the St. Lawrence River on Monday. They are the latest in a recent flurry of adverse incidents on the waterway.   Witnesses say the first tug tipped over around 4 p.m. while the crew managed to escape before the boat capsized


Panama Canal Expansion Could Shift US Container Traffic

Photo: SCPA

Following the Panama Canal expansion in 2016, up to 10 percent of container traffic to the U.S. from East Asia could shift from West Coast ports to East Coast ports by 2020, according to new research conducted by The Boston Consulting Group (BCG) and C.H. Robinson


Cyprus Transport Ministry to call for tenders for Limassol Port

Pic: Cyprus Ports Authority

 The government of Cyprus has changed the legal framework of the Cyprus Ports Authority (CPA), which will allow commercial operations at Limassol port to be privatised.   The Cyprus  Ministry of Transport will call for tenders by the end of this week to attract investors for the


Busy Season for Seaway

Port of Thunder Bay, the largest grain port on the Great Lakes, reported that its grain shipments were off to the strongest start this season

  Grain shipments through the St. Lawrence Seaway are up 7 per cent this season, continuing the pace set last year when ships carried the largest volume of grain through the navigation system in 14 years. According to The St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corporation


UN Agency Sets Pollution Rules for Polar Shipping

(Photo: Mark Garten)

The United Nations shipping agency on Friday adopted stricter safety and environmental provisions for vessels operating in Arctic and Antarctic waters after years of negotiations.   As ice melts, shipping traffic through the regions is set to increase.  


Iran Moves Ships, Reducing Tensions Near Yemen

U.S. Navy aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt (U.S. Navy photo by Anna Van Nuys)

A flotilla of nine Iranian military and cargo ships that U.S. officials feared was carrying arms to strife-torn Yemen sailed northeast in the direction of Iran on Friday, a move the Pentagon said helped to ease U.S. concerns.   Army Colonel Steve Warren, a Pentagon spokesman


Iranian Ships Turn Away from Yemen

USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71) and the guided-missile cruiser USS Normandy (CG 60) operate in the Arabian Sea on April 21, 2015. US Navy Photo

 An Iranian convoy, believed to be carrying weapons destined for the Houthi rebels in Yemen, turned around and is headed north towards home country, WSJ quoted as U.S. defense officials saying.   The cargo ships, accompanied by two Iranian warships, shifted course as a U.S


Iranian Ships Moving Away from Yemen

Iranian ships are moving northeast away from Yemen, a U.S. official said on Thursday after a convoy of Iranian cargo ships prompted U.S. concerns that Tehran was sending weapons into the region.   The official, speaking on condition of anonymity


USCG Flush Ice down River Systems to Facilitate Shipping

courtesy USCG

  The Coast Guard cutter fleet is flushing ice through the Great Lakes river systems to prevent ice jams and facilitate commercial shipping as the shipping season begins and the ice on the Great Lakes dissipates. Ice breaking operations, above freezing-temperatures






 
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