Nickel Ore Shipments: Lessons Learned from Losses

MarineLink.com
Thursday, October 03, 2013

One of the most pressing problems for the bulk shipping industry is the safe carriage of nickel ore. The increasing demand for this commodity is fuelled by China’s thirst for nickel ore as it is the principal alloy component for stainless steel.

Chinese nickel ore imports have spiraled from nearly 5m metric tons (mt) in 2006 to near 50m mt in 2011. The bulk of these imports come from Indonesia, with the Philippines now running very close behind.

But this fast-expanding trade has been marred by the heavy price paid in terms of lives and vessels lost. The following details tell the story:

October 2010: Jian Fu Star, 13 fatalities

November 2010: Nasco Diamond, 21 fatalities

December 2010: Hong Wei, 10 fatalities

December, 2011: Vinalines Queen, 22 fatalities

February 2012: Harita Bauxite, 15 fatalities


In August, the 2012-built Trans Summer sank off Hong Kong, but all 21 crew were saved by rescue helicopters.

All these vessels were carrying nickel ore from Indonesia to China.

As at January 2012, nickel ore made up only 0.06% of shipping world trade, but accounted for 80% of the fatalities in the bulk trades.

Under the title Liquefying Bulk Cargoes, the American P&I Club has been giving technical presentations to pass on some of the lessons learned from these casualties. Dr. William Moore, senior vice president of managers Shipowners Claims Bureau Inc. and responsible for the club’s loss prevention and risk management programmes, presented to a meeting in New York of the American Institute of Marine Underwriters. This was followed by a similar presentation to the Association of Average Adjusters of the United States and Canada by John Poulson, senior vice president and principal surveyor, Atlantic Marine Associates, New York, and responsible for overseeing all American Club vessel surveys.

A Chinese language version of the presentation is being arranged by the club’s Shanghai office for showing to club members in Asia, particularly Greater China, and also at suitable seminars.

George Tsimis, senior vice president and head of claims at Shipowners Claims Bureau, also gave a brief presentation about the nickel ore trade, the rash of major casualties since 2010, and the Harita Bauxite incident, at the annual International Maritime Law Seminar in London late September. He noted that the death toll of the Indonesia-China nickel ore trade is about four times the rate of all seafarers killed by pirates around the world each year.

The American Club has first-hand experience of the difficulties attendant upon the loading, stowage and carriage of nickel ore, and this is thought to be the first time that a detailed presentation on this problem has been prepared for the shipping and insurance industries.

The slide presentation covers international regulations, the characteristics of liquefaction, the risks to the carrying vessel, responsibilities of the ship’s staff during loading, compliance with IMSBC Code (what is really going on?), and where do things go from here – should all stakeholders take a united stand?

In a summary of its findings and investigations, the American Club says that regulations are lagging behind the realities of the nickel ore trade, and that political, economic and commercial interests and pressures make any significant progress difficult. Industry stakeholders (eg, Intercargo, BIMCO, the International Group clubs, etc) are consequently challenged to produce unified solutions.

Finally, “if a ship sinks carrying nickel ore … it is most likely the cargo is the cause.”

american-club.com
 

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

Bulk Carrier Trends

Global Ocean Trade: Latest Shipbuilding Orders

No tankship orders noted the past week by Clarkson Hellas in their latest S&P Weekly Bulletin, but no lack of orders in the dry bulk carrier market, all from Far East shipbuilders.

Scorpio Bulkers Gets $540m Loan for Newbuilds

Scorpio Bulkers Inc. announced that it has received a commitment for a $540 million loan facility and provides an update on the financing of its fleet. On July 21,

Ivory Coast Rain Fuels Hopes for Strong Cocoa Main Crop

Rain mixed with sunny spells last week in most of Ivory Coast's main cocoa regions helped the development of plentiful small pods, suggesting a strong start to

Finance

Scorpio Tankers: Latest Financial & Ship Delivery News

Scorpio Tankers Inc. says it has updated its stock buyback program; lists its latest new vessel deliveries, and gives the release date of its second quarter 2014 earnings report.

Box Ships Inc. Repays Commerzbank Loan

Greece-based Box Ships Inc. says it has repayed in full the outstanding amount under its loan agreement with Commerzbank AG dated July 29, 2011.  The outstanding amount of the loan,

Aker Philadelphia Shipyard ASA : Purchase of own shares

Aker Philadelphia Shipyard ASA (the "Company") (Oslo: AKPS) has on 21 July 2014 purchased 2,155 shares in the Company on Oslo Axess at an average price of NOK 160.

News

USCG Rescues Woman from Detroit River

The Coast Guard rescued a 30-year-old woman from the Detroit River late Sunday evening after she was reported to have fallen overboard when the vessel she was on was struck by another boat's wake.

Sanjam Gupta helps Launch WISTA in Sri Lanka

Within two years of the launch in India in 2012, the Women’s International Shipping and Trading Association (better known as WISTA), Ms. Sanjam  Sahi  Gupta,

General Dynamics Launches Morgan County NextGen-911

General Dynamics Information Technology, a business unit of General Dynamics, has implemented a NextGen-911 emergency service solution for Morgan County, Ohio.

Maritime Safety

Nigerian Piracy Threatens UK Interests: New Report

The UK economy is heavily exposed to lawlessness off the coast of Nigeria, a new report published today by the UK Chamber of Shipping says. The report found that almost all of the UK’s annual £6.

USCG Rescues Woman from Detroit River

The Coast Guard rescued a 30-year-old woman from the Detroit River late Sunday evening after she was reported to have fallen overboard when the vessel she was on was struck by another boat's wake.

Ireland Ratifies the MLC

Ireland’s Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, Paschal Donohoe TD and the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Richard Bruton TD, today announced

Logistics

Heavy Lift & Project Vessels Face Berthing Delays at Indian Ports

Heavy Lift & Project vessels calling at Indian ports are experiencing congestion, which according to the trade is an artifically created situation. They point out that unlike other vessels,

Suicide Attack Escalates Libya Violence, Oil Output Slips

Crude output slips for first time since port deal; fresh clashes in Tripoli and Benghazi. Brega oil port seen open in few days. A twin suicide bombing at a Libyan

New ICTF Boosts Crowley’s Efficiency

The opening of Florida East Coast Railway’s (FEC) new, state-of-the-art intermodal container transfer facility (ICTF) adjacent to Crowley Maritime Corporation’s Port Everglades, Fla.

 
 
Maritime Careers / Shipboard Positions Maritime Contracts Naval Architecture Navigation Port Authority Salvage Ship Electronics Ship Repair Sonar 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: 0.1427 sec (7 req/sec)