RENA Update from MNZ

Monday, November 28, 2011

25 November 2011: 10.30am

Maritime New Zealand (MNZ) has been advised by insurers acting for the charterers of the Rena (Mediterranean Shipping Company) there are a further 21 containers containing dangerous goods on board the ship. This is in addition to the 11 containers of dangerous goods already advised.


However, Director of MNZ, Catherine Taylor, said expert scientific advice received by MNZ confirmed the material presented a low risk in its current state.


“Immediately after the grounding of the Rena on 5 October, as Director of MNZ, I requested information about all dangerous goods on board the ship from MSC as declared by the shippers, However, for reasons still unknown, the contents of these 21 containers were not declared as dangerous goods in the original manifest provided to MNZ and as required under the International Maritime Dangerous Goods Code,” Ms Taylor said.


“While experts advise that the contents of these containers are considered low risk in their current state submerged below decks in the vessel’s holds, MNZ is carrying out a thorough investigation as to why these dangerous goods were not declared as required under maritime legislation and whether this constitutes a breach of the law.”


The manifest records the product as “Cover Bath Material” and “Pure Tapped Bath Material”, a by-product of the aluminium smelting process, which is considered low risk unless ingested or inhaled directly in its dry powdered form. MSC also advises this material is known as cryolite.


“Since learning of this new information on Tuesday (22 November), MNZ has spent the last few days working extensively with various scientific, environmental and health experts to accurately assess the risk posed by cryolite to the marine environment and to people,” Ms Taylor said. “We have also been given a strong assurance by MSC that there are no other potentially dangerous goods on board that have not been declared.”


Twenty of the containers in question are located in hold 3, which suffered considerable damage in the grounding. The other is in hold 5. This means they are below deck and inaccessible, under containers above deck. Of these, 17 containers are understood to be submerged, but all are likely to have been submerged at some time as the ship has moved. There are 490 tonnes of the product on board. It is packed in 1 tonne bulk bags inside the containers.  The bags have a polyethylene liner and are constructed of polypropylene, so are water resistant, but not water tight. Water is likely to have seeped into the bags within the container.


“Expert advice is that the cryolite on board Rena is considered to be of low risk given that the product is only slightly soluble in water, so is expected to dissolve slowly. Any dissolved material will be diluted and dispersed very rapidly, reducing the potential effects further.” While cryolite is dangerous to humans in its dry form if ingested or inhaled, it is not considered a risk in these circumstances, because the material has been submerged and contained below decks since the Rena grounded. Ms Taylor said salvors working on the vessel had been advised that the material was on board and were taking all necessary safety precautions to continue their work.


“While this late notification is frustrating, it’s simply another issue Rena has thrown at us that we have to get on and deal with. It’s the typical nature of salvage operations that these sorts of issues will come up, and our plans remain flexible enough to respond to them as they occur,” Ms Taylor said.

Maritime Today

The Maritime Industry's original and most viewed E-News Service

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

People & Company News

Nakilat Damen Shipyards Qatar JV is 5

On 23 November 2015, Nakilat Damen Shipyards Qatar celebrated its first 5 years of operation. With 40 vessels delivered or under construction, the yard has proven

Deltamarin to Designs First LNG Handysize Bulk Carriers

Deltamarin Ltd proudly announces that it has signed a contract to design the world’s first LNG handysize bulk carriers, which will point the way towards greener shipping of commodities.

Wärtsilä's' Digital Services for Performance Enhancement

Wärtsilä, a global leader in complete lifecycle solutions for the marine and energy markets, launches a new service portfolio, Wärtsilä Genius services to help


Tote Cargo ship adrift near Haida Gwaii

The MV North Star, a cargo ship that is owned by TOTE Maritime, spent more than half a day adrift Tuesday off the coast of British Columbia, Canada.   The Canadian

When Conducting Investigations Consider 'Privileges'

Whether voluntarily or as required by the International Safety Management Code, the American Waterways Operators’ (AWO) Responsible Carrier Program, or some other rule or regulation,

Adrift Cargo Ship Taken in Tow

The Barbados-registered cargo vessel Skog, which was adrift off Orkney after encountering engine problems, is now under tow, the U.K. Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) reported.

Maritime Safety

Rickmers-Linie Completes Recertification

Rickmers-Linie, the Hamburg-based specialist in worldwide liner services for heavy lifts and project cargoes, has successfully completed audits by DNV GL which took place between 3 and 5 November.

Sandra Could Reach Hurricane Strength

Interests in southern portions of the Baja California peninsula have been advised to monitor the progress of Sandra, as Tropical Storm or Hurricane Watches may

Seagull's Software Tool for Benchmarking Seafarers Knowledge

Seagull Maritime has launched an advanced software tool able to benchmark seafarer knowledge levels, allowing shipowners and operators to compare their crew

Government Update

U.S. Ups Philippines Aid as South China Sea Turmoil Builds

The United States has raised its military aid to the Philippines this year to $79 million, the U.S. ambassador said on Wednesday, as tension rises in the region

Egypt to Complete East Port Said Side Channel in 2016

Egypt plans to complete a side channel in East Port Said, near the Suez Canal, that would speed up shipping and allow ships direct entry into the port by the end of June 2016,

BWM Convention Doesn't Resolve U.S. Issues - ICS

ICS notes that the IMO Secretary General has announced that the Ballast Water Management Convention will enter into force worldwide from 24 November 2016, following

Maritime Careers / Shipboard Positions Maritime Contracts Offshore Oil Pipelines Pod Propulsion Port Authority Salvage Ship Simulators Shipbuilding / Vessel Construction Sonar
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: 0.1293 sec (8 req/sec)