Ballast Water Update: Weighing the Advent of VIDA
The hard-fought passage of VIDA promises a simpler, more unified and logical set of environmental standards related to the discharge of myriad vessel streams. Industry wanted it, and now it is here. Will it deliver, and if so, when? That depends on who you talk to.As most commercial maritime operators know, US ballast water regulations made a sharp turn last December. That’s when President Trump signed the Frank LoBiondo Coast Guard Authorization Act of 2018.That legislation contained Title IX – the “Vessel Incidental Discharge Act (VIDA)…
AWO Elects Foss Maritime's Merritt as Chair
The members of the American Waterways Operators, the national tugboat, towboat and barge industry association, elected a new slate of leaders earlier this month during the association's annual Spring Convention held in Washington, D.C. Scott Merritt, former Chief Operating Officer for Foss Maritime Company, LLC, was elected Chairman. Arthur F. Mead, Vice President and General Counsel at Crowley Maritime Corporation, was elected Vice Chairman. Mr. Merritt succeeds outgoing Chairman Tom Marian…
OP/ED: Smoother Sailing
Consistent Regulations Critical to Maritime Commerce, American Prosperity.“The ease of moving people and cargo on America’s waterways is a competitive advantage and wellspring for economic prosperity and national security,” states the U.S. Coast Guard’s Maritime Commerce Strategic Outlook, released last fall by ADM Karl Schultz, Commandant. The owners and mariners of the vessels that ply our nation’s waterways, transporting the commodities that power the American economy, are a vital component of that prosperity and security.
INSIGHTS: Peter Stephaich
Chairman & CEO, Campbell Transportation Company.Peter H. Stephaich is Chairman and CEO of Blue Danube Incorporated and Campbell Transportation Company. Currently, he is also Chairman of the Board of the Waterways Council, Inc. (WCI). Peter also serves on the Board of Directors of Blue Danube, a position that he has held since 1982. Serving the barge industry for over 30 years in a number of key roles, he also counts among his many qualifications his tenure(s) as Past Chairman and Past Treasurer of the American Waterways Operators (AWO)…
AWO Testifies Before Congress
Today, the American Waterways Operators testified before two congressional committees on the state of the American maritime industry.Tom Allegretti, President & CEO, testified before the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee while across the Capitol, Jennifer Carpenter, Executive Vice President & COO, appeared before the House Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation. In written testimonies submitted to the Committee and Subcommittee, both Mr. Allegretti and Mrs.
Blue Danube Elects Monahan to BoD
Mike Monahan was elected to Blue Danube Incorporated’s Board of Directors on February 8, 2019. Blue Danube Incorporated is the holding company of Campbell Transportation Company Inc. Michael J. Monahan joined Campbell Transportation Company (“Campbell”) as President in October of 2011. Campbell is a privately held company which is based in Houston, PA. Campbell and its subsidiaries employ approximately 300 employees, owns and manages over 1,100 barges and 40 to 50 towboats, 3 major shipyards…
Cyber Risk Management – best practices for the towing industry
The American Waterways Operators (AWO) has released a new publication - Cyber Risk Management: Best Practices for the Towing Industry, Version 1.0.This best practices guide is the product of a year-long initiative of the Cyber Risk Management Quality Action Team, an AWO workgroup, with technical input and guidance from Coast Guard prevention staff. The guide is designed to help the towing industry identify and manage cyber risks and detect and respond to cyber attacks or accidents.Cyber Risk Management: Best Practices for the Towing Industry, Version 1.0, is available on AWO’s website.
The Top 10 Maritime Stories for 2018
Choosing the ‘top stories of 2018’ was, this year, a difficult task. Many compelling story threads played out, dramatically impacting the North American waterfront, and in particular, the workboat sector – each in their own unique way. Read on to find out how and why.Autonomous Vessels: Ready or Not, Here They ComeFuturistic, remote-controlled autonomous marine vehicles aren’t coming. They are here. As the pace of change quickens, autonomous vessels are already providing service and value on the water.
AAPA: U.S. Ballast Water Legislative Victory Appears Imminent
Legislation that sets standards for incidental water discharges from vessels passed the House on Nov. 29.The Frank LoBiondo Coast Guard Authorization Act of 2018, S. 140, which includes the Vessel Incidental Discharge Act (VIDA), passed the Senate two weeks earlier and now moves to the President to be signed.The provision places the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in the lead role of establishing standards for ballast water discharge, and the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) will monitor and enforce compliance.
Stephaich Elected Chairman of WCI
The Waterways Council, Inc. (WCI) named Peter H. Stephaich, Chairman and CEO of Campbell Transportation Company, Inc. (Pittsburgh, PA), as its Chairman of the Board. Stephaich succeeds Tim Parker, President, Parker Towing Company (Tuscaloosa, AL), who served as WCI Chairman from 2016-2018.Stephaich has served the barge industry for more than 30 years in a number of key roles, as Past Chairman and Past Treasurer of the American Waterways Operators; Past Chairman and Trustee of the National Waterways Foundation…
Preventing Maritime Vessel Explosions – The Role of the Marine Chemist
With advances in technology, increased regulatory requirements for training, and an industry that has been committed to improving working conditions, especially those associated with confined space entry and fire prevention, why are we still seeing maritime related fires and explosions that often include serious injury or loss of life? HistoryFollowing the First World War, as cargo vessels, particularly tank ships, were being converted to carry larger cargos, the incident rate of fires and explosions during shipbuilding, repair, and conversion began to rise.
SubM: The Coast Guard IS Still an Option
Not all towing vessel companies are choosing Third Party Organizations (TPOs) for their Subchapter M compliance option. One size does not fit all.Under Subchapter M, towing vessel companies may opt to use TPOs to conduct their audits and surveys instead of inspections by the Coast Guard. While many companies are going the TPO route, many are opting for traditional Coast Guard inspections.As a retired Coast Guard marine inspector, I have always advocated the Coast Guard option to our clients.
AWO's Marian Weighs in on post-Harvey Houston and the Inland Towboat Industry
One Year After Hurricane Harvey, AWO Chairman Touts Houston Recovery; Tugboat, Towboat and Barge Industry Resiliency.During their recent 2018 Fall Convention in Houston, the members of The American Waterways Operators, the national trade association representing the U.S. tugboat, towboat and barge industry, heard from AWO Chairman and Houston resident Tom Marian, General Counsel at Buffalo Marine Service, Inc., who reflected on the one-year anniversary of Hurricane Harvey making landfall and the resiliency of both the City of Houston and the tugboat, towboat and barge industry nationwide.
Subchapter M Casts Off
Initial reports show that the towing industry is adjusting well to the new normal on inland rivers. In fact, it is business as usual for most.July 20, 2018 was a critical date for tow boat operators. That was the deadline for all U.S.-flag towing vessels – over 26 feet, or less if used to assist with transport of oil or hazardous materials – to be in compliance with Subchapter M, the U.S. Coast Guard’s towing vessel safety regulations. It’s been a long time coming. As a regulatory program…
USACE Participation Soars, Membership Expands at CDMCS
The Council for Dredging and Marine Construction Safety (CDMCS) convened this week in Washington, DC on the heels of its Pipeline Task Force Meeting to discuss OSHA regulatory updates, best practices for employee training documentation, opioid identification and prevention, and incident/injury trends in the industry.Representatives from The Dutra Group, Inland Dredging, Great Lakes Dredge & Dock, JT Cleary, Manson Construction Co., Mike Hooks, Norfolk Dredging, and Weeks Marine attended…
The New York Bight – a Hydra of Difficult Issues
The greening of America’s energy signature will not come without the usual discussions, regulatory oversight – and opposition from a raft of special interests.Amidst an atmosphere of possible resurgence in the domestic offshore oil energy, maritime stakeholders are also reminded that there is more than one kind of energy available for development off the four collective coasts of the United States. That process is underway in the Great Lakes; it has already happened off of New England.
Cenac Marine Awarded Subchapter M COI
In accordance with Subchapter M, Cenac Marine Services has been issued one of the first Certificate of Inspection’s (COI) from the Department of Homeland Security and the U.S. Coast Guard.Subchapter M was designed to take safety in the towing industry to a new and historic level by setting minimum safety standards for towing vessels, incorporating and building on the safeguards that AWO members have already put in place, and to ensure that the entire industry achieves the level of safety that is necessary to protect lives…
Interview: Mark Knoy, President and CEO, ACBL
American Commercial Barge Line (ACBL) named Mark K. Knoy as its president and chief executive officer in August 2011. Prior to joining ACBL, he was vice president of American Electric Power’s (AEP) Fuel, Emissions and Logistics Group and president of AEP River Operations, having joined AEP with its 2001 purchase of MEMCO Barge Line. From 1984 to 1994, he was owner/operator of The Mark Twain Towing Company and Delmar Marine, Inc., Pekin, Illinois. He began his career in 1973 working aboard towboats on the inland waterways as a deck hand and then as a captain.
American Waterways Operators Responds to Senate
On Wednesday, the U.S. Senate rejected legislation - Vessel Incidental Discharge Act (VIDA) - that would have simplified regulatory oversight of vessel discharges. The Coast Guard Authorization Act of 2017, due to inclusion of the Vessel Incidental Discharge Act (VIDA) within the bill, failed by three votes to reach the 60 votes needed in the United States Senate to end debate and move to a vote on final passage. While the vote tally reflected bipartisan support for the Coast Guard authorization bill with VIDA included…
Woodruff Named American Maritime Partnership President
The American Maritime Partnership (AMP) today announced the election of Matt Woodruff of Kirby Corporation as its new President. He succeeds Thomas A. Allegretti, President & CEO of The American Waterways Operators. “Leading the American Maritime Partnership – which speaks for the half a million American men and women whose employment depends on the domestic maritime industry – is a great honor. Our vibrant domestic maritime industry is an essential foundation for America’s economic, national, and homeland security,” Woodruff said.
Hudson River Tales: PAWSA Pauses Parking Project
When marine safety collides with environmental advocacy and non-maritime business interests, the discussion can be contentious, confusing and cumbersome. In June 2016, the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) opened a public comment period regarding new anchorage zones in the Hudson River; usually a rather low-key set of issues. This proved different. Opponents jumped on the proposal – initially suggested by three maritime organizations – as a backdoor way to facilitate a huge expansion in crude oil shipments on the Hudson.
Cenac Marine Awards SubM TPO Contract to ABS
ABS said it was awarded a Third-Party Organization (TPO) contract by Cenac Marine Services, owner and operator of a fleet of inland and offshore vessels, to support compliance with U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) Subchapter M requirements. The contract establishes ABS as Cenac’s sole TPO, providing oversight of their Internal Survey program and additional support with ABS surveyors when required. “Tugboat owners and operators are urgently seeking and evaluating options for Subchapter M compliance,” said ABS Americas Division President, Jamie Smith.
Campbell CEO Stephaich Weighs in on All Things Inland
Peter H. Stephaich is Chairman and CEO of Blue Danube Incorporated and Campbell Transportation Company. Peter is also on the Board of Directors of Blue Danube, a position that he has held since 1982. If today he isn’t the most familiar name on the domestic waterfront, then perhaps, he should be. Serving the barge industry for over 30 years in a number of key roles, he also counts among his many qualifications his tenure(s) as Past Chairman and Past Treasurer of the American Waterways Operators (AWO)…