USCG Recognizes Steamship Pilots Hurricane Isaac Heroics

MarineLink.com
Friday, September 06, 2013
Pictured l-r: Captain Derek Solar, Captain Michael E. Rooney, USCG Captain P W Gautier, and Captain Maurice "Toby" Wattigney.

One year after Hurricane Isaac scattered more than a hundred ships and vessels in the Lower Mississippi River, the United States Coast Guard (USCG) honored two New Orleans-Baton Rouge Steamship Pilots (NOBRA) for their fearless actions in braving gale force winds and a storm surge to rescue several crippled vessels and their crews and prevent further casualties from the Category One storm, announced Captain Michael E. Rooney, NOBRA president.

The USCG award ceremony honoring the NOBRA pilots was conducted today at the Maritime Pilots Institute (MPI) in Covington, La.

"The Commandant of the United States Coast Guard," said USCG Commander P.W. Gautier, Captain of the Port, "takes great pleasure in presenting the Coast Guard Certificate of Merit to New Orleans-Baton Rouge Steamship Pilots Association river pilots Captain Derek Solar and Captain Maurice ‘Toby’ Wattigney for their roles in the response and recovery efforts during Hurricane Isaac, August 27-29, 2012."

According to the USCG, Isaac was a surprisingly strong category-one hurricane whose prolonged movement significantly damaged the port community. The storm's especially powerful surge and gale force winds resulted in more than a hundred marine casualties and pollution incidents, causing property damage in excess of $5 billion as well as the shutting down of the Lower Mississippi River and its connecting waterways and tributaries. Some 120 deep draft vessels remained in the port when the storm struck with about a third of them experiencing significant casualties within the initial 24 hours of the storm. The hurricane heavily impacted vessels at anchorage, leaving some aground and others entangled in their moorings.

"Captains Solar and Wattigney were among very few pilots who were able to reach the Mississippi River through the flooding and blocked highways to address these vessel casualties and they did so without hesitation," said Captain Gautier.

With gale force winds pounding in early morning darkness, Captain Solar drove to Grandview Anchorage to board a launch for the MV Overseas Antigmar, a 46,000-ton oil/chemical tanker measuring 600 ft. long and 100 ft. wide. The ship's Master initially dragged anchor and then weighed anchor to avoid perilously drifting and colliding with the LaPlace water intake – the workhorse water plant and water line that supports St. John The Baptist Parish. Captain Solar arrived on the scene, took control of the vessel and brought it safely to anchorage – an operation that lasted well into the morning. As he departed the ship, Captain Solar noticed another vessel had dragged anchor and was in the middle of the navigational channel. Knowing that reopening of the Mississippi River vessel traffic was a top USCG priority, Captain Solar boarded the vessel and cleared the channel.

After reaching the Grandview Anchorage, Captain Wattigney boarded a launch for the grounded MV Medi Sentosa, an 84,000-ton bulk carrier measuring 750 ft. long and 95 ft wide. Captain Wattigney headed to the MV Medi Sentosa before the storm surge reversed and the high water receded. He immediately noticed the 13,000-ton MV Clipper Daisey, an oil/chemical tanker measuring 406 ft. long and 65 ft. wide, had spun on its moorings and was aground, blocking the MV Medi Sentosa. Shuttling between the vessels, Captain Wattigney managed to not only re-float them but also safely return both to anchorage, thus achieving the USGC priority of clearing the navigational channel.

"The brave and heroic actions of Captains Solar and Wattigney exemplify our mission at NOBRA to protect the public welfare and environment of the State of Louisiana," said Captain Rooney. "We are extremely proud of these two outstanding master mariners and their service as NOBRA Pilots."
 

Maritime Reporter August 2014 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

Tanker Trends

GTT Earns Five AIPs for Multi-gas Membranes

Gaztransport & Technigaz (GTT), designer of membrane containment systems for the maritime transportation and storage of LNG (Liquefied Natural Gas) announced five

Steel Cut for Yamal LNG Project’s Lead Tanker

A steel-cutting ceremony was held on September 29 for the lead gas tanker ordered by SCF Group for transportation of liquefied natural gas (LNG) under the Yamal LNG project.

GasLog Closes First Option Vessels Dropdown

GasLog Ltd.  announced today the closing of the sale of two modern liquefied natural gas (“LNG”) carriers, the Methane Jane Elizabeth and Methane Rita Andrea,

Environmental

Emissions Scrubber Receives Class Approval

Langh Ship received final class approval from Germanischer Lloyd for its exhaust gas cleaning system on m/s Laura (pictured), a 1996-built a 6,500 DWT general cargo

‘Green’ Hybrid-powered Research Vessel Christened

The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk christened a larger, “greener” new research vessel on Friday, September 26 in preparation for launching a new era in examining,

Cove Point LNG Export Facility Gets US FERC Approval

U.S. federal regulators on Monday approved construction of Dominion Resources Inc's liquefied natural gas export project in Cove Point, Maryland. Cove Point is the fourth U.

Casualties

New Simulation Tool for Collision Reconstruction

BMT ARGOSS and BMT Surveys, subsidiaries of BMT Group Ltd, the international design, engineering and risk management consultancy, announced an innovative new service

Report on MOL Comfort Incident is out

In response to the casualty of “MOL COMFORT” which occurred on 17 June 2013, ClassNK established the Investigative Panel on Large Container Ship Safety, comprised

NAT Tankship Rescues 150 in Mediterranean

Nordic American Tankers Limited ("NAT") says the one of its vessels, the 'Nordic Passat' performed a rescue operation, involving 150 people in the Mediterranean last Saturday afternoon,

News

NY Harbor Supply & Distribution Fall Reception/Buffet

More than 600 attendees are expected at the 52nd annual New York Harbor Supply & Distribution Fall Reception/Buffet for the energy and energy related industries

Kounalakis Joins OW Bunker N. America

OW Bunker, a reseller and physical supplier of marine fuels, announced the appointment of Georgia Kounalakis to its physical supply operation in North America.

Louisiana to Get Natural Gas Liquefaction and Fueling Facility

Tenaska Bayou LNG expected to meet growing marine, transportation and oil and gas exploration and production demand on the Gulf Coast Tenaska NG Fuels, LLC and Waller Marine, Inc.

Coast Guard

USCG Cutter Rush Returns

The crew of Coast Guard Cutter Rush returned to its homeport following a successful 72-day deployment in the Central and Western Pacific, Monday. Rush departed

Coast Guard Investigating Fatal Boating Collision

The Coast Guard is investigating a fatal collision between a towboat and a pleasure craft near Cincinnati, Thursday evening. Watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector

Coast Guard: Investigations Underway in Cutter Collision

The Coast Guard is conducting a series of formal investigations after Tuesday’s collision involving a Coast Guard cutter and a fishing vessel off the coast of Puerto Rico.

People in the News

Industry Professionals to Speak at ShipConstructor Conference

The speakers representing various companies at next week's SSI Americas ShipConstructor User Conference, October 7-9, 2014 in Mobile, Alabama, demonstrate SSI's

Shipping's GHG Emissions Down

The total Green House Gas (GHG) emissions from global maritime transport are estimated to have been over 20% lower in 2012 than in 2007, according to "London Matters

NAT Tankship Rescues 150 in Mediterranean

Nordic American Tankers Limited ("NAT") says the one of its vessels, the 'Nordic Passat' performed a rescue operation, involving 150 people in the Mediterranean last Saturday afternoon,

 
 
Maritime Careers / Shipboard Positions Maritime Security Navigation Pipelines Pod Propulsion Ship Electronics Ship Repair Ship Simulators Shipbuilding / Vessel Construction Winch
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | terms and conditions | 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: 0.2713 sec (4 req/sec)