Commandant News

17 Apr 2019

ABS holds 157th Annual Meeting

ABS Chairman, President and CEO Christopher J. Wiernicki

The 157th Annual Meeting Hears How Safety Leadership is Driving Sustainability in Maritime. ABS held its 157th Annual Meeting on Tuesday, detailing the organization’s performance and future focus to its members. “In 2018, we delivered solid, top-tier performance. We maintained leading positions with owners and builders, held our 70-year-strong top position in the offshore market, and led the industry for safety, port state control, and the global orderbook to grow our classed fleet to 260MT,” said ABS Chairman, President and CEO Christopher J.

22 Mar 2019

USCG Commandant Delivers SOTCG Address

Adm. Karl Schultz delivers the annual SOTCG Address in San Pedro, CA (Image: CREDIT USCG)

The Commandant of the United States Coast Guard delivered his first State of the Coast Guard address Thursday at Coast Guard Base Los Angeles-Long Beach in San Pedro.Speaking from the largest port in the nation, Adm. Karl Schultz highlighted Coast Guard security and marine safety operations, which facilitate $4.6 trillion in annual economic activity.Schultz also recognized the service and sacrifice of Coast Guard men and women deployed around the world ensuring global peace and prosperity, including servicemembers supporting U.S. Indo-Pacific Command and U.S. Central Command.

21 Mar 2019

OP/ED: Smoother Sailing

Jennifer Carpenter, EVP and COO of The American Waterways Operators

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.

19 Mar 2019

DAPI 101: Outreach and Enforcement

File Image: CREDIT AdobeStock / 
© Cozyta

Even as the minimum Random Drug Testing Rate is raised to 50 PCT, the Coast Guard wants its mission to consist of 90% outreach and just 10% enforcement. Really.The domestic waterfront got some less-than-happy news when the U.S. Coast Guard announced that the calendar year 2019 minimum random drug testing rate had been set at 50 percent of covered crewmembers. It’s safe to say that nobody is happy about it, much less the Coast Guard itself.In truth, the Coast Guard had little to say about the matter.

27 Feb 2019

Record Level of New Orders for GTT in 2018

Image: GTT

French shipping engineering company Gaztransport & Technigaz (GTT) said that the new ship orders in 2018 surged on year to 50 from 21, making its sales hit a 10-year high, driven by demand from natural gas liquefaction units in construction, in particular in the US.GTT won 48 orders for LNG carriers and two orders for Floating Storage Regasification Units (FSRUs)."Most of these LNG carriers orders are intended for natural gas liquefaction units under construction, in particular in the United States.

22 Feb 2019

The USCG -Mandated Drug Testing Increase:

Lee Seham, partner, Seham, Seham, Meltz & Petersen and General Counsel of the non-profit drug testing consortium American Maritime Safety, Inc.

Wasteful, Unwarranted and does not address the ‘Marijuana Challenge.’On December 28, 2018, the United States Coast Guard published a notice in the Federal Register alerting the maritime industry of its determination to increase the minimum annual rate of random drug testing for 2019 from twenty-five percent (25%) to fifty percent (50%). American Maritime Safety, Inc. (AMS), a non-profit industry consortium that facilitates the industry’s compliance with these regulations, regrets the Coast Guard’s decision.AMS counts as members over 400 maritime employers including cruise liners…

31 Jan 2019

OP/ED: Advancing the Passenger Vessel Industry:

Gus Gaspardo, President, Padelford Packet Boat Co.

A Strategic Look Forward.It is my honor to serve as PVA’s President. My company, Padelford Packet Boat Co., Saint Paul, MN, has proudly, and actively, been a member of this organization since its inception almost 50 years ago when it was previously known as the National Association of Passenger Vessel Operators (NAPVO).While PVA is rich in history, it by no means is stuck in old ways. PVA is always evolving to mirror the ever-advancing world of passenger vessel operations. As the voice of the passenger vessel industry…

30 Jan 2019

INSIGHTS: Admiral Karl Schultz, Commandant, U.S. Coast Guard

Admiral Karl L. Schultz, the 26th Commandant of the United States Coast Guard.

Admiral Karl L. Schultz assumed the duties as the 26th Commandant of the United States Coast Guard on June 1, 2018. He previously served from August 2016 to May 2018 as Commander, Atlantic Area where he was the operational commander for all Coast Guard missions spanning five Coast Guard Districts and 40 states. Previous operational assignments include Sector Commander in Miami, Florida, as well as command tours aboard Cutters VENTUROUS, ACACIA and FARALLON. His senior staff assignments include Chief of the Office of Congressional and Governmental Affairs; Congressional Liaison to the U.S.

21 Jan 2019

Safety Management Systems: A Good fit for Passenger Vessels?

Captain Lee Boone is the Chief of the U.S. Coast Guard’s Office of Investigations & Casualty Analysis

The evidence and industry subject matter experts both say ‘yes.’In its recently released SAFER SEAS DIGEST, Lessons Learned from Marine Accident Investigations (2017), the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) reports investigating numerous accidents across all modes of transportation where a properly implemented safety management system (SMS) could have prevented injuries, loss of life, or material damage. That document spans analysis of casualties across the full spectrum of all manners of marine craft…

11 Jan 2019

Surface Navy Association to Hold Annual Symposium

Rear Adm. Ronald A. Boxall, director, Surface Warfare, addresses attendees of the Surface Navy Association's 30th National Symposium in 2018. (U.S. Navy photo by Timothy Hale)

The Surface Navy Association will hold its 31st National Symposium January 15-17, 2019 at the Crystal City Hyatt Regency Crystal City Hotel in Arlington, Va.The symposium will feature senior Navy leaders delivering keynote remarks, focused on the theme of “Ready, Agile, Focused: Own the Fight!”Featured speakers include Vice Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Bill Moran; Commander, Naval Surface Forces/Commander, Naval Surface Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet Vice Adm. Richard A. Brown, USN; Director, Surface Warfare (N96) Rear Adm. Ronald A. Boxall; and Director, Expeditionary Warfare (N95) Maj. Gen.

06 Jan 2019

BAE Systems to Modernise USS Shoup

Image: BAE Systems

BAE Systems has received a $78.8 million contract for the maintenance and modernisation of the US Navy’s Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer, USS Shoup.The value of the competitively awarded contract could reach $87.6 million if all options are exercised, said a press release.According to the release, the scope of the depot modernisation period availability includes dry-docking the ship and performing underwater hull preservation works. BAE Systems will also upgrade the ship’s Aegis combat system and its command and control equipment…

03 Jan 2019

Coast Guard Raises Minimum Random Drug Testing Rate to 50 PCT

Image Credit / AdobeStock © Cozyta

The Coast Guard announced in the Federal Register that the calendar year 2019 minimum random drug testing rate is set at 50 percent of covered crewmembers. This rate is effective January 1, 2019 through December 31, 2019.The Coast Guard has increased the minimum random drug testing rate for 2019 as a result of Drug and Alcohol Management Information System (MIS) data for the most recent reporting year indicating that the positive rate is greater than one percent. 46 CFR part 16.230(f)(2)…

27 Dec 2018

Third Party Oversight

File Image: the El Faro's VDR as it looked installed on the vessel.

... one year after the commandant’s Final Action Memo on the El Faro sinking.“… the Coast Guard is ultimately responsible to monitor the performance of third parties that perform delegated functions and also to guarantee the effectiveness of vessel inspections and surveys. Yet the Coast Guard failed to adequately oversee the third party in this case, and the investigation reveals that the Coast Guard has not sustained the proficiency and policy framework to do so in general. The…

18 Dec 2018

NMC Announces Revised Comment Period for MM Medical Manual

Revised Comment Period: Draft Merchant Mariner Medical Manual, Notification of Availability and Request for Comments.The Coast Guard is seeking public comment regarding the draft Merchant Mariner Medical Manual. The guidance in this manual should assist medical practitioners, the maritime industry, individual mariners, and Coast Guard personnel in evaluating mariner applicants’ physical and medical statuses to meet the requirements of the merchant mariner medical certificate. This draft commandant instruction manual incorporates and consolidates prior guidance on the medical evaluation of merchant mariners contained in several Coast Guard documents.

12 Dec 2018

U.S. Coast Guard Publishes first Domestic Vessel Annual Report

Rear Admiral John P. Nadeau, Assistant Commandant for Prevention Policy, United States Coast Guard.

The Office of Commercial Vessel Compliance announced the release of the 2017 Domestic Vessel Annual Report, the first of its kind issued from the Coast Guard.The report collates data from the Coast Guard’s Marine Information Safety and Law Enforcement (MISLE) database regarding vessel population, inspections conducted, and deficiencies issued for the 2017 calendar year.In 2017, the Coast Guard’s fleet of responsibility contained 12,189 vessels with active Certificates of Inspection (COI). There were 905 Marine Inspectors (MI) assigned to field units who conducted 18,424 inspections.

07 Dec 2018

Coast Guard Commandant Optimistic About Icebreaker Funding

A file image of the Coast Guard's lone heavy icebreaker, the Polar Star. Image CREDIT: USCG

The United States may soon get funding for a new heavy icebreaker ship, the head of the U.S. Coast Guard said on Thursday, as global warming spurs the race to stake out the Arctic, which is rich in oil, gas, and minerals.The United States has two operational icebreakers - a heavy one, the Polar Star, which is more than 42 years old and has outlived its life expectancy by a dozen years, and a medium one, the Healy cutter.By comparison, Russia has about 40 to 50 icebreakers, purpose-built vessels that can rescue other ships…

05 Dec 2018

Interview: Shuichi Iwanami, Commandant, Japan Coast Guard

Shuichi Iwanami, Commandant, Japan Coast Guard. Photo: JCG

As the Japan Coast Guard celebrates its 70th anniversary, Maritime Reporter & Engineering News offers insights on the current status and future direction of the JCG courtesy of an interview with Shuichi Iwanami, Commandant, Japan Coast Guard.*Note: At the time this interview was conducted, Shuichi Iwanami was still Vice Commandant for Operations.Could you please tell us the history and future development of the Japan Coast Guard (JCG)?The JCG, in 2018 celebrates the 70th anniversary of its foundation. When it was founded, the Japanese waters were in an eclipse period.

04 Dec 2018

Interview: Admiral Karl Schultz, Commandant, United States Coast Guard

Coast Guard Commandant Adm. Karl Schultz visits with Coast Guard crews stationed in
New York City. U.S. Coast Guard photo illustration by Petty Officer 1st Class Jetta Disco.

Maritime Reporter & Engineering News was offered the opportunity to interview Admiral Karl Schultz, the 26th Commandant in the history of the United States Coast Guard, in his office in Washington, DC. Just five months into his tenure, his plate is predictably full with a number of challenges, including: Attracting and retaining future U.S. Coast Guard personnel; addressing a number of assymetric threats, including cyber attacks; and ensuring captial and operating budgets are adequate to safely and efficiently carry out a global mission envelope, to name but a few.

26 Nov 2018

Shipyards: FMG & its Quest to Build USCG Icebreakers

Image: Fincantieri Marine Group

As the U.S. Coast Guard moves to rebuild its icebreaker fleet we spoke with RADM Bruce Baffer (Ret.), head of Fincantieri’s effort to win the contract to build the Polar Security Cutters.The case for the U.S. to build a new class of icebreakers is strong. While news of global climate change and the shrinking ice caps at both poles is daily headline fodder, maritime navigation in and around the Arctic and Antarctic remains one of the most difficult and dangerous operating arenas on the high seas.

20 Nov 2018

Vard Begins Construction of Le Commandant Charcot

Image: Ponant

Construction of Ponant's new polar exploration vessel Le Commandant Charcot has begun  with the traditional steel cutting ceremony at Vard's shipyard in Tulcea, Romania.Delivery of the new flagship, the most ambitious ever designed both in terms of travel experience and respect for the environment, is scheduled for 2021.The vessel will bear the name of a great French explorer: Le Commandant Charcot. An explorer by vocation with a true passion for sailing, Jean-Baptiste Charcot…

13 Nov 2018

U.S. Flag Vessel Safety

Image: NTSB

Congressional and Agency Actions to Implement Changes to U.S.-Flag Vessel Safety Requirements Three Years after the M/V El Faro IncidentOctober 1, 2018 marked three years since the tragic sinking of the M/V El Faro – ranking as one of the worst maritime disasters in U.S. history and resulting in the highest death toll for a U.S. commercial vessel sinking in almost 40 years. Following this incident, both the  National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) and U.S. Coast Guard spent considerable  effort to investigate this incident.

02 Nov 2018

U.S. Coast Guard Clarifies U.S. Citizenship Requirement for U.S. Flag Vessels

File Image: AdobeStock / © xmentoys

Rules regarding 'Employment of Non-U.S. Credentialed Personnel On board Certain U.S.-Documented Vessels' defined.An analysis of recent arrival notifications has revealed several cases of U.S.-documented vessels calling on U.S. ports with non-U.S. credentialed personnel in lieu of U.S. citizens. The intent of this MSIB is to provide information and guidance regarding the provisions for employment of non-U.S. credentialed personnel on board certain U.S. documented vessels. Please…

26 Oct 2018

Meet USCG Commandant Admiral Karl Schultz

Admiral Karl Schultz, Commandant of the Coast Guard, U.S. Coast Guard. Photo: USCG

Last week Maritime Reporter & Engineering News had the opportunity to sit with Admiral Karl Schultz, Commandant of the Coast Guard, U.S. Coast Guard, in his office in Washington, D.C. for a wide ranging discussion on all matters coast guard and maritime. The 26th Commandant of the United States Coast Guard has occupied the top seat for just under five months, and he  is starting to clearly shape the major initiatives that will define his tenure. Diversity in the Coast Guard ranks…

Maritime Reporter Magazine Cover Apr 2019 - Navies of the World

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