SSA Appeals to Indonesia to Stop Forest Fires

MarineLink.com
Friday, June 21, 2013

Grave concerns on safe navigation through Straits of Malacca and Singapore.

The Malacca and Singapore Straits is a strategic gateway in world trade and one of the world’s busiest waterways. On any given day, over 140 ships – such very large oil tankers, container ships, bulk carriers and cruise liners, ply through the Straits; not forgetting the smaller crafts like passenger ferries, tugs and barges making frequent cross-Straits voyages in the littoral states of Singapore, Indonesia and Malaysia.

During the past week, acrid haze originating from forest fires in Sumatra, Indonesia has blanketed the region, including the southern Straits, southern peninsular Malaysia and the island of Singapore. While smoke haze is a perennial problem for the region during this time of the year, at noon today, the three-hour Pollutant Standards Index hit an unprecedented high of 401, which is deemed as being hazardous to health. Visibility had also dropped significantly.

The Singapore Shipping Association (SSA) is gravely concerned with the effects of the worsening hazy conditions on the safe navigation of ships through the Straits of Malacca and Singapore.

Whilst shipmasters are competently trained to navigate through very foggy and stormy weathers in other open seas, transiting through the narrow and busy Straits of Malacca and Singapore, however, can be very challenging and dangerous especially under extreme smoky conditions.

Daniel Tan, Executive Director of SSA said, “The Straits of Malacca and Singapore are among the busiest and narrowest shipping lanes in the world. Reduced visibility in such heavy shipping traffic will definitely affect the safe navigation of ships in the Straits. The passage through the Straits is further complicated by the many smaller barter trading ships and also passenger ships in cross-Strait traffic.”

While the smoke haze is a serious concern for the region, a maritime accident in the Straits would also have an extremely adverse and lasting impact on the marine environment.

He added, “In the event of any unfortunate accident, human lives and the marine environment will be at risk, especially if it involves a fully laden VLCC. The oil spillage from the tanker can have serious consequences not only on the marine life in the Straits but also affect the livelihood of fishermen and those who depend on the tourist industry.”

The SSA is also concerned that the smoke from the forest fires will not only contribute to atmospheric pollution but also climate change. The inhalation of the particulate matters from the smoke by the seafarers on board the transiting ships is also a serious concern.

In this regard, the SSA has urged the Masters of all ships transiting the Straits of Malacca and Singapore to take all necessary measures to ensure a safe passage. In addition to paying close attention to safety broadcasts on the relevant VHF channels, Masters have also been advised to navigate with caution in accordance with the International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea.

In particular, Masters have been strongly advised to proceed at a safe speed and to posting additional look-outs, instead of solely relying on electronic navigational aids to detect small ships in the vicinity.

In the interest of safe navigation and clean environment, both marine and atmospheric, the SSA appeals to the Indonesian Government to put an urgent stop to the indiscriminate ‘slash and burn’ method of land clearing in Sumatra.
 

Maritime Reporter April 2015 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

Bulk Carrier Trends

Norwegian Car Carriers to Buy Two from Hyundai Samho

Oslo-listed Norwegian Car Carriers (NOCC) has signed a contract with Hyundai Samho Heavy Industries for the construction of two 6500 ceu Pure Car Truck Carrier (OCTCs).

The German Shipbuilding Rebound

German shipbuilding has made a significant turnaround. The country’s shipbuilding industry has seen increases in the number of employees, orders and deliveries compared to 2013,

Algoma Central Orders New Great Lakes Ships

Algoma Central Corporation announces $160 million investment in fleet expansion and fleet renewal   Algoma Central Corporation announced that it has acquired

Environmental

IMO Calls for Environmentally Sound Ship Recycling in Bangladesh

The  International Maritime Organization (IMO) and the government of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh are jointly implementing a project entitled “Safe and

BIMCO Welcomes EU Decision on Migrants

BIMCO has stated today that it appreciates the new efforts by EU leaders to reduce increasing reliance on merchant shipping to rescue the growing numbers of

Long Beach, Los Angeles ports host forum to gather input

More than 100 cargo owners, trucking firm leaders, longshore labor, marine terminals and other goods movement industry representatives turned out Wednesday for

Container Ships

Norwegian Car Carriers to Buy Two from Hyundai Samho

Oslo-listed Norwegian Car Carriers (NOCC) has signed a contract with Hyundai Samho Heavy Industries for the construction of two 6500 ceu Pure Car Truck Carrier (OCTCs).

APM Maasvlakte II Terminal Opens

APM Terminals Maasvlakte II held a ceremony  to celebrate the opening of the world’s most automated container terminal.   The  event that was attended by Dutch

Zim Offers Asia-US east coast service via Suez

Israeli liner carrier Zim Integrated Shipping Services is launching a new service between Asia and the U.S. East Coast via the Suez Canal at the end of May.   The

News

5th Floating Accommodation for Lerwick

A further accommodation ship, Ocean Atlantic, is due at Lerwick on Monday 27 April 2015 and is on its way from Portland in Dorset. As with the other floating accommodation at the port,

Double Order for Super Gloria Reachstacker

Kalmar, part of Cargotec, has gained an order for two Super Gloria reachstackers from Tadarsa Logistics S.L. in Aviles, Spain. The largest reachstackers ever built,

Goliat FPSO in Norway

The Goliat FPSO was successfully floated off the heavy-lift vessel, Dockwise Vanguard, in the fjord outside Hammerfest, says Eni Norge    The Goliat platform has arrived in Hammerfest,

Maritime Safety

BIMCO Welcomes EU Decision on Migrants

BIMCO has stated today that it appreciates the new efforts by EU leaders to reduce increasing reliance on merchant shipping to rescue the growing numbers of

Two Rescued from Sinking Shrimp Boat

Two fishermen were rescued from their sinking shrimp boat by a U.S. Coast Guard aircrew Friday off the coast of Saint Simons Island near Brunswic, Georgia.   Watchstanders

IMO: Making Ferries Safer

The International Maritime Organization (IMO) domestic ferry safety conference in Manila April 24 has adopted guidelines to aid the process of reducing the mounting

 
 
Maritime Careers / Shipboard Positions Maritime Contracts Maritime Security Maritime Standards Naval Architecture Navigation Offshore Oil Pod Propulsion Salvage Winch
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 0.2220 sec (5 req/sec)