Arabian Sea News

03 Sep 2019

Salalah Ports Sets Productivity Record

Image: APM Terminals

With an annual capacity of around 5 million TEU, the Port of Salalah set a new productivity record this month, delivering 412.97 Port Moves per Hour (PMPH) on vessel Cap San Tainaro. The Port handled 3,820 moves in a port stay of 9.25 hours.Oman’s major regional gateway port and transshipment hub, located on the Arabian Sea has recorded the highest productivity ever achieved in the region. Last month, an investment of USD 31 million in asset replacement and capacity improvements over the past year at the Port of Salalah paid off.Referencing improvements in standards of work…

29 Aug 2019

India's Ports on Alert for 'Underwater' Attacks

Visakhapatnam port is a second largest port by cargo handled in India. (Image Credit: AdobeStock / © SNEHIT)

India's two main ports said on Thursday they had been warned by the coastguard and intelligence officials that Pakistan-trained commandos have entered Indian waters to carry out underwater attacks on port facilities.The Mundra Port, run by Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone Ltd, and the state-owned Kandla Port had asked their employees and ship operators to be vigilant, port officials and the ports said in advisories seen by Reuters.Tensions between India and Pakistan have escalated since India revoked the special status of its portion of the Himalayan region of Kashmir on Aug.

09 Aug 2019

MSCI Advisory Strait of Hormuz Precautions

This revised advisory cancels U.S. Maritime Advisories 2019-004 and 2019-008.1. References: U.S. Maritime Alerts 2019-004A, 2019-003A, 2019-002A, and 2019-001A.2. Issue: Heightened military activity and increased political tensions in this region continue to pose serious threats to commercial vessels. Associated with these threats is a potential for miscalculation or misidentification that could lead to aggressive actions. Vessels operating in the Persian Gulf, Strait of Hormuz, and Gulf of Oman may also encounter GPS interference, bridge-to-bridge communications spoofing, and/or other communications jamming with little to no warning.Since May 2019, the following maritime incidents have occurred in this region:Six attacks against commercial vessels (see U.S.

18 Jul 2019

U.S. Amphibious Group Patrolling Arabian Sea

Flight Ops on the USS Boxer (CREDIT: USN)

Aboard USS BOXER in the Arabian Sea, a U.S. Harrier fighter jet takes off from the amphibious assault ship USS Boxer in the Arabian Sea as an oil tanker passes, a nautical mile away.The patrol is "standard" but the situation - growing tension between the United States and Iran - is not.Soon after the roar of the Harrier fades, two combat helicopters and two unmistakable Osprey aircraft with their tiltable rotors land back on the flight deck."We want to make sure that we assure allies in the region and to ensure freedom of navigation and free flow of commerce…

11 Jul 2019

Britain Foils Iranian Attempt to Block Tanker

File Image: A UK Navy warship on patrol (CREDIT: AdobeStock / © Peter Cripps)

Three Iranian vessels tried to block a BP-operated tanker passing through the Strait of Hormuz but backed off when confronted by a Royal Navy warship, the UK government said on Thursday.Britain urged Iran to "de-escalate the situation in the region" after the British Heritage, a Suezmax oil tanker operated by BP under an Isle of Man flag, was approached."HMS Montrose was forced to position herself between the Iranian vessels and British Heritage and issue verbal warnings to the Iranian vessels…

10 Jul 2019

US: Military Coalition Should Safeguard Gulf

A U.S. Navy (MSC) fleet oiler underway. (CREDIT: USN)

The United States hopes to enlist allies over the next two weeks or so in a military coalition to safeguard strategic waters off Iran and Yemen, where Washington blames Iran and Iran-aligned fighters for attacks, the top U.S. general said on Tuesday.Under the plan, which has only been finalized in recent days, the United States would provide command ships and lead surveillance efforts for the military coalition. Allies would patrol waters near those U.S. command ships and escort commercial vessels with their nation's flags.Marine General Joseph Dunford…

01 Jul 2019

MSCI Advisory: Regional Conflict and Piracy

Logo: MARAD

2019-007-Red Sea, Gulf of Aden, Arabian Sea, Gulf of Oman, and Indian Ocean-Violence Due to Regional Conflict and PiracyDescription:This revised advisory cancels U.S. Maritime Advisory 2018-0151. References: (a) U.S. Maritime Alerts 2018-001A, 2018-002A, 2018-002B, 2018-005A, and 2018-007A2. Issues: Regional conflict and piracy threats continue to pose potential risks to commercial vessels operating in the above listed geographic areas.3. Conflict in Yemen continues to pose potential risk to U.S.

14 Jun 2019

Analysis: Strait of Hormuz and the Risk of Escalation

© Peter Hermes Furian/Adobe Stock

The Strait of Hormuz, the narrow shipping lane between Iran and Oman named after the fabulously wealthy ancient kingdom of Ormus, has fascinated oil traders since the Iranian revolution in 1979. Iran has periodically threatened to close the strait to enemy shipping, while the United States and its allies have pledged to keep it open and maintain freedom of navigation, by force if necessary.The strait has become a symbolic flashpoint in the region-wide confrontation and indirect…

12 Jun 2019

SAExploration Completes Ocean-Bottom Project

Pic: SAExploration

The geophysical services provider SAExploration Holdings successfully completed the largest shallow water ocean-bottom marine project in its history.Contracted to SAExploration by a major national oil company, the project, located in the Arabian Sea off the coast of India, utilized over 20 vessels, which included three ocean-bottom node deployment vessels and two seismic source vessels operating in dual source/simultaneous source mode.A total of 5,400 ocean-bottom nodes and in excess of 1…

11 Jun 2019

India to Evacuate Thousands as Cyclone Nears West Coast

Indian authorities are preparing to evacuate 300,000 people along the western coast as a severe cyclone is expected to make landfall on Thursday morning in the state of Gujarat.Storm Vayu, which formed in the Arabian Sea, is likely to cross the Gujarat coast with gust speeds as high as 135 kmph (84 mph), the India Meteorological Department said in a statement.It also warned the cyclone could further delay the progress of the annual monsoon rains over the rest of India, as the storm was drawing rain clouds from over the sea.The arrival of the monsoons on the southern coast of Kerala was already about a week late this year.Gujarat Chief…

24 Apr 2019

World Navies Report: Denmark

The Royal Danish navy frigate HDMS Peter Willemoes (F362) transits the Gulf of Aden. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Mario Coto)

Navies operate on a spectrum between deterrence and defense, to include offensive operation, support of foreign policy, and power projection to civil affair and humanitarian assistance and disaster response. Many have constabulary responsibilities, and it could be argued that, with the exception of the largest navies, most are more like a coast guard than a military force in their normal responsibilities.Every Navy is different. Yes, they all share similar challenges of acquisition…

31 Dec 2018

Royal Austalian Navy Seizes Illegal Drug Shipments

Photo: © Commonwealth of Australia

Royal Australian Navy frigate HMAS Ballarat has seized more than 900 kilos of heroin worth approximately $279 million* during two boarding operations that took place 21–23 Dec 18 as part of Operation MANITOU.Ballarat conducted flag verification checks by boarding vessels of interest, under the direction of the Combined Maritime Forces’ (CMF) Combined Task Force (CTF) 150 in international waters in the Arabian Sea. The fishing vessels, known as dhows, were believed to be engaging in illegal activity.The boarding team discovered and seized illegal narcotics on both dhows.

12 Nov 2018

China to Develop Multi Billion Dollar Deep Sea Port In Myanmar

Photo by Xinhua

China and Myanmar are moving ahead with a China-backed deep-sea port project in Kyauk Phyu Special Economic Zone (SEZ) , 250 miles northwest of Yangon.The framework agreement was signed by Myanmar's Deputy Minister of Planning and Finance and Chairperson of the Management Committee of the Kyaukphyu SEZ U Set Aung and President of CITIC Group Chang Zhenming, stated Chinese state media.This is the third port in India’s vicinity. China is also developing deepwater strategic Gwadar port in Pakistan in the Arabian Sea which faces the Mumbai coast.

06 Aug 2018

Saudi Arabia Resumes Oil Exports through Red Sea Lane

© Anatoly Menzhiliy / Adobe Stock

Top oil exporter Saudi Arabia said on Saturday it has resumed all oil shipments through the strategic Red Sea shipping lane of Bab al-Mandeb.Saudi Arabia halted temporarily oil shipments through the lane on July 25 after attacks on two oil tankers by Yemen's Iran-aligned Houthi movement.A statement by the Energy Ministry said shipments had resumed on Saturday."The decision to resume oil shipment through the strait of Bab al-Mandeb was made after the leadership of the coalition has taken necessary measures to protect the coalition states' ships…

13 Apr 2018

Five Weeks Later, Maersk Honam is Still Burning

(Photo: Indian Coast Guard)

Efforts to suppress a fire on containership Maersk Honam continue more than a month after a blaze aboard the 15,000 TEU vessel killed five crew members. On March 6, a fire broke out in a cargo hold aboard Singapore-flagged Maersk Honam while the vessel was en route from Singapore toward Suez, about 900 nautical miles southeast of Salalah, Oman. At the time of the incident, the ship was carrying 7,860 containers for the 2M Alliance between Maersk Line and Mediterranean Shipping Co. (MSC).

22 Mar 2018

Recent Casualties Highlight Importance of Cargo Insurance - iContainers

The Indian Coast Guard battles a fire aboard the Maersk Honam earlier this month (Photo: Indian Coast Guard)

The ocean freight industry has seen several major incidents over the past few weeks, including two fires on board two separate Maersk vessels, and a containership collision in Karachi Port that forced the temporary closure of the port. These incidents underscore the importance of always buying cargo insurance to protect merchandise and cushion damage, says Klaus Lysdal, Vice President of Sales and Operations at iContainers, a 100 percent online freight forwarder. The major fire…

16 Mar 2018

Another Maersk Containership Catches Fire

File photo: Maersk Line

U.S. flagged containership Maersk Kensington reported a fire in a cargo hold while en route from Salalah, Oman toward Suez. The fire is the second reported aboard a Maersk vessel this month. The fire has been contained and all 26 crew members are reported safe and accounted for, according to A.P. Moller-Maersk. The vessel is carrying 3,518 containers (corresponding to 5,616 TEU) and is currently at anchor outside the port of Salalah where it is receiving assistance from shore. The 6,188 TEU Maersk Kensington is owned and operated by Maersk’s U.S. subsidiary Maersk Line, Limited (MLL).

09 Mar 2018

Tenth Successful Interdiction for HMAS Warramunga

Photo: Australian Government

HMAS Warramunga’s crew has seized record amounts of narcotics on Operation Manitou following their latest interdiction. In the latest haul, the crew of the Royal Australian Navy frigate seized approximately 132 kilograms of heroin valued at almost $40 million while patrolling international waters of the Arabian Sea on 6 March 2018. The illegal narcotics interdiction is Warramunga’s third seizure in the past seven days having also seized in excess of eight tonnes of hashish from two vessels just days earlier.

08 Mar 2018

One Dead after Maersk Line Vessel Catches Fire

(Photo: Indian Coast Guard)

A crew member died and four others went missing after fire broke out on a new Maersk Line container vessel in the Arabian Sea, the company said. The vessel caught fire at around 1520 GMT on Tuesday, about 900 nautical miles southeast of Salalah, Oman, the world's biggest container shipping company said in a statement. Twenty-three crew members were rescued but one of them, a Thai national, died on Wednesday, added Maersk. "His health condition drastically deteriorated ... due to the injuries sustained in connection to the fire," said Maersk, a unit of Danish shipping firm A.P.

07 Mar 2018

Aussie Navy Seizes eight tonnes Hashish

Parcels of narcotics seized by HMAS Warramunga lay on the upper deck of a vessel as part of an illicit cargo seizure during a narcotics interdiction operation Photo Royal Australian Navy

The crew of Royal Australian Navy frigate HMAS Warramunga has intercepted two vessels and seized approximately eight tonnes of hashish valued at approximately $400 million during operations in international waters of the Arabian Sea. Warramunga has now seized 19.5 tonnes of hashish and 1.5 tonnes of heroin, valued in excess of $1.43 billion* since deploying to the Middle East in November 2017. On 3 March Warramunga’s Seahawk helicopter crew detected a vessel of interest during surveillance operations. A boarding party searched the vessel, uncovering 4.1 tonnes of illicit cargo.

07 Mar 2018

Maersk Ship Ablaze in Arabian Sea, 4 Crew Missing

(Photo: Indian Coast Guard)

Maersk has reported an active fire in a cargo hold on its liner vessel Maersk Honam en route from Singapore toward Suez around 900 nautical miles southeast of Salalah, Oman. After firefighting efforts were unsuccessful, the crew sent out a distress signal and a total of 23 crew members were evacuated to the nearby vessel ALS Ceres, which arrived at the scene around 18:30 GMT. Four crew members remain missing. The fire on board the Maersk Honam continues and the situation of the vessel is very critical, Maersk said. The cause of the fire is currently unknown.

15 Jan 2018

Search for ONGC Offshore Helicopter Crew Continues

Photo: Pawan Hans Ltd

The Indian Navy has widened its search operations for the missing crew members of the Pawan Hans helicopter  (C/s VT-PWA) which crashed off the Mumbai coast on Saturday. The helicopter with seven people on-board, including five Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) officers and two pilots, crashed off the Mumbai coast minutes after it took off for the state-owned company’s oil installation in the Arabian sea on Saturday. According to NDTV report, on the third day of search in the high seas, the rescuers located the last remaining body - of the missing pilot.

31 Dec 2017

Australian Navy Seizes Drug Haul in Middle East

HMAS Warramunga's boarding team prepare to board a vessel of interest, subsequently finding narcotics onboard. Photo: Royal Australian Navy

The crew of the Royal Australian Navy frigate HMAS Warramunga have spent the Christmas season hard at work, spending nearly three days seizing almost eight tonnes of hashish and 69 kilograms of heroin from drug smugglers while conducting maritime security operations in the Arabian Sea. Warramunga intercepted and boarded three suspect vessels between 27 and 29 December 2017, in an operation planned and coordinated by the Combined Maritime Forces’ Combined Task Force 150 which is currently commanded by Australia—supported by a combined Australian-Canadian staff.

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