Marine Casualty Reporting: Addressing the Coast Guard's Processes
The United States marine casualty reporting and investigation processes as administered by the U.S. Coast Guard are seriously flawed and in need of major overhaul. These processes have been broken for years, yet minimal efforts have been made to address the root causes. The Coast Guard is drowning in marine casualty reports. The majority of its informal investigations are never closed. Those that are closed are seldom read again. Lessons that might have been learned from marine casualties are rarely shared with the maritime industry. It is time to go back to basics.
Ship Casualty Management Guidelines Book Published
The Nautical Institute and the International Salvage Union (ISU) have launched 'Casualty Management Guidelines', a book aimed at providing practical guidelines to help seafarers during a casualty, when demands can be confusing, contradictory, unclear or a combination of all three. In the book masters and crew members are told what to expect from people or organisations that might be involved as the casualty unfolds. Chapters are presented, describing how masters should expect to deal with different people, from owners to government officials, insurance representatives and salvage experts. It will give all involved an idea of the job each may be undertaking, together with priorities and responsibilities.
MOL Comfort Casualty Investigation Update
Under the leadership of ClassNK Executive Vice President Toshitomo Matsui, the ClassNK Casualty Investigation Team established in response to the June 17, 2013 casualty involving MOL Comfort in the Indian Ocean continues to work in close contact with Mitsui O.S.K. Lines (MOL), Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI), and government authorities to determine the cause of casualty. As has been reported by MOL, the fore section of the MOL Comfort, which was expected to provide investigators with valuable information on the cause of the casualty, sank on July 11, 2013. In view of these unfortunate circumstances, the ClassNK Casualty Investigation Team will expedite the investigation into the cause of the incident, and expects to consolidate its preliminary findings by early September 2013.
Launch of Asian Marine Casualty Forum
An industry forum aimed at producing a practical response to the current crises in maritime casualty management was officially launched in Singapore today. LOC Group (LOC), the leading international maritime consultancy group, is set to host the forum, the first of its kind, as a cornerstone gathering during the forthcoming Singapore Maritime Week (April 20-24, 2015). Singapore is the perfect location for this initiative being one of the busiest hubs for shipping and a centre of excellence for the management of casualties in the region.
Intercargo Calls for Improved Reporting Following Ship Casualties
During the forthcoming IMO Maritime Safety Committee (MSC 92 to be held June 12-21, 2013) Intercargo, the International Association of Dry Cargo Shipowners will present its Bulk Carrier Casualty Report and will call for member States to fully investigate ship losses and very serious casualties, and to make accident investigation reports available in the public domain, to ensure that the largest possible audience can learn from the findings. Objectivity, subjugating legal restrictions in deference to safety, adopting IMO principles and making casualty investigation reports available in a timely fashion should also be key objectives. As…
New Report Examines MOL Comfort Casualty
Following the loss of the container vessel MOL Comfort on June 17, 2013, ClassNK established a special Casualty Investigation Team in order to investigate and determine the cause of the casualty. Japan’s Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism (MLIT) further established a Committee on Large Container Ship Safety to develop measures to ensure the safety of large container vessels on August 29, 2013. ClassNK serves as a member of the Committee and the ClassNK Casualty Investigation Team is actively involved in its deliberative and investigative work.
ClassNK Update on Loss of 'MOL Comfort'
Based on the presence of water-ingress in the bottom of the vessel’s midship at the outset of the casualty, the fracture in the vessel’s hull is considered to have originated from the bottom part of the vessel. Hull strength and loads at the time of accident were assessed in order to investigate how the fracture occurred and progressed. Structural hull capacity was analyzed using non-linear finite element 3-hold modeling, and dynamic wave loads including whipping effects were also analyzed.
MOL Ccomfort Casualty Investigation Update
ClassNK Executive Vice President Toshitomo Matsui has announced that the ClassNK Casualty Investigation Team’s analysis and investigation will take longer than initially expected, and will delay the release of its findings. The team, which began investigating the MOL Comfort casualty in Mid-June, had expected to complete its analysis and investigation of the casualty in early September. However, the time consuming nature of some of the analysis work has forced the team to revise its forecast for completion. The team continues to carry out its exhaustive investigation into the cause of the casualty, and now expects to release its findings to the public by the end of October 2013.
Global Diving & Salvage Appoint Salvage Engineer
Andrew Lawrence takes up the appointment based at corporate HQ in Seattle, Washington. As part of the Marine Casualty Response Service Line, Andrew Lawrence will develop salvage plans, provide detailed engineering support, and assist with project management during emergency and routine operations. Mr. Lawrence served as a Coast Guard officer for eight years, including 5 years at the Coast Guard’s premiere engineering office, the Marine Safety Center. At the Marine Safety Center…
U.S. Coast Guard Participates in Costa Concordia Investigation
The U.S. Coast Guard, joined by the National Transportation Safety Board, will be part of an Italian-led marine casualty investigation into the January 2012 grounding and partial sinking of the cruise ship Costa Concordia off the coast of Italy. The incident left 32 people dead, including two Americans. Evidence, timeline, analysis, conclusion(s), recommendations and a draft report are to be formalized over the next few months of the investigation. The Coast Guard places the highest priority on the safety of passenger vessels, including those domestic and foreign vessels that embark passengers in the United States and embark U.S. passengers world-wide, ensuring they are in compliance with applicable international and domestic safety standards.
Marine Casualty Reports – Clarified
So you think you know when to make a marine casualty report? There has been a lot of confusion over the years as to when to make a marine casualty report with regard to certain incidents. Yet, although the Coast Guard constantly urges industry to make required reports, it has never promulgated national guidance to promote consistency in reporting based on uniform interpretation of the regulatory standards – until now. Specifically, the Coast Guard issued a Notice of Availability and Request for Comments (Notice) on January 14…
Salvage, Wreck Removal Beset with Chronic Problems
The basic nature of maritime casualties, salvage and wreck removal has evolved rapidly over the last few years. Ships and offshore constructions have become more technologically elaborate, and in many cases simply bigger and more complex than ever. There isincreasing concern about whether current international legislation and industry practices cancope with the issues. Many are skeptical regarding the fundamental format of casualty contracts, questioning if they are justchronically outdated. Nick Haslam, Shipping Director of leading international maritime consultants, the LOC Group, is convinced initiatives to improve casualty management and create a better understanding between all parties must be heard, debated and positively supported.
Maritime Casualty Forum Held in Singapore
More than 250 shipping and insurance professionals gathered for the first ever Asian Maritime Casualty Forum held during Singapore Maritime Week. The two-day conference, hosted by global marine and engineering consultancy London Offshore Consultants (LOC), highlighted some of the vital issues in salvage and vessel wreck removal and in particular rising costs, technological challenges and the need for the parties involved in major casualties to work more closely together. The industry…
Cummings Convenes Hearing on Inspector General’s Report Concerning COSCO BUSAN
Congressman Elijah E. Cummings convened the Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation to receive a report developed by the Department of Homeland Security’s Office of the Inspector General (OIG) on the circumstances surrounding the allision of the COSCO BUSAN with the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge on November 7, 2007. This report was originally requested by the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi, and Chairman Cummings following a hearing of the Subcommittee convened in last November to begin examining this incident. “Among other results, the OIG found that five of the six individuals assigned as marine casualty investigators in Sector San Francisco were unqualified for these positions.
Cummings Comment on Marine Safety Hearing
Congressman Elijah E. “This morning we witnessed another example of the pressing need to expand the size of the U.S. Coast Guard. We cannot expect any organization to operate at full capacity when it does not have the staff or resources necessary to do so. Operating at full capacity is especially important when dealing with critical issues such as the safety of our mariners, marine life, and property at sea. For this reason, the Coast Guard must perform a workload analysis to determine how many people it needs to properly fulfill its marine casualty investigation duties. “Additionally, I fully support Chairman Oberstar’s suggestion that the Coast Guard and National Transportation Safety Board reach a resolution regarding primacy when it comes to marine casualty investigations.
CLIA Supports Transparency of Marine Casualty Data
Washington - Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) is recommending enhancements to regulations about the reporting of casualties at sea, as part of the Cruise Industry Operational Safety Review, launched by CLIA and its member lines immediately following the Concordia incident. Specifically, CLIA is recommending that the International Maritime Organization (IMO) expressly and more clearly require flag states to report all “very serious marine casualties.” Very serious marine casualties are defined by the IMO and include any marine casualty resulting in a passenger or crewmember fatality, the complete loss of a ship, or serious damage to the marine environment.
New Training for Man Overboard Response
Falling overboard is a life-threatening emergency, not only for the person in question but also for those involved in their rescue. Every step in the rescue process has its own associated hazards and in such a fraught and potentially distressing situation a well-structured rescue plan is essential. Since 1 July 2014, the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) has required ships to have ‘plans and procedures for the recovery of persons from the water’ which will minimize the risk to the rescuers as well as to the casualty or casualties.
Braemar Calls for More Training for reducing Ship Casualties
Braemar (incorporating The Salvage Association) (Braemar SA) has called for more training to be given in order to make vessel casualties manageable in the event of high-risk incidents. Addressing delegates at the annual International Shipowning and Shipmanagement Summit in Singapore today (3rd October), Graeme Temple, Far East Regional Director for Braemar SA said: “Training is essential to managing incidents effectively and looking at how processes can be improved. Often we see casualties needlessly occurring because of human error…
Intercargo Publishes 2012-13 Bulk Carrier Report
The International Association of Dry Cargo Shipowners (Intercargo) has launched Benchmarking Bulk Carriers 2012-13, the latest edition of our annual publication. Now in its seventh year of publication, this edition contains statistical information and analysis relating to the world bulk carrier fleet, including an analysis of casualties during 2012 and Negative Performance Indicators such as collisions, groundings etc. This year’s report also highlights the tailing-off of fleet growth. For the first time, this edition also includes a copy of the Intercargo ‘terminal-problem reporting form’; The form, which invites Intercargo members and non-members alike to share their experiences of ports globally…
GL Noble Denton Expands MCI Practice
GL Noble Denton Launches Marine Casualty Investigation Operations in Seattle. GL Noble Denton has expanded its Marine Casualty Investigation (MCI) practice in North America by launching operations in Seattle, a primary hub for marine insurance. The new base will allow the company's team of experienced surveyors to meet the growing demand for marine casualty investigations off the West Coast of the US and Canada. Activity in the cruise and offshore energy industries is rapidly developing in the region and GL Noble Denton's local presence will allow them to respond quickly to meet client needs.
USCG Guidance and Reporting Marine Casualties
U.S. Coast Guard Guidance Helps to Bring some Clarity to the Debate. In July 2015, the U.S. Coast Guard released Navigation and Vessel Inspection Circular 01-15 (“NVIC”), titled Marine Casualty Reporting Procedures Guide with Associated Standard Interpretations. The purpose of the NVIC is to assist vessel owners and operators in understanding the marine casualty reporting requirements, which many in the industry think are about as clear as mud. Confusion as to what constitutes a marine casualty and what incidents need to be reported has persisted in the marine industry for years.
iPIRB: Accuracy in Locating Casualties at Sea
Scottish company develops vital new level of accuracy for locating casualties at sea. The new iPIRB, launched by MarineMTS and Telemar UK Limited locates and identifies marine casualties fast so that every effort can be concentrated on rescue and saving life. The technology was showcased (Friday 16 November) at a launch hosted by the Maritime Rescue Institute at Stonehaven, and attended by marine industry operators including Taqa Bratani, Shell, Nexen, Marathon and Total, as well as Grampian Police.
IMO Provides Assistance to Red Sea Ferry Investigation
With respect to the ongoing investigation into the al-Salam Boccaccio 98 ferry disaster in the Red Sea on 3 February 2006, IMO wishes to clarify the following. Soon after the accident, IMO responded to a request for assistance in the investigation of the casualty from both the Governments of Egypt and Panama, by making available two independent consultants to provide technical advice to the casualty investigation board established jointly by the two Governments. M. Jean-Charles Leclair, of France, was appointed to provide advice on procedures for casualty investigation under SOLAS regulation I/21 (Casualties) and IMO Resolutions A.849(20) and A.884(21) (respectively the Code for the Investigation of Marine Casualties and Incidents and amendments thereto)…