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Monday, January 22, 2018

Merchant Vessel News

Coast Guard Cutter Elm Heads to Baltimore for Overhaul

File photo: USCG photo by John Edwards

The 20-year-old U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Elm is scheduled to make its way to the Coast Guard Yard in Baltimore this month for a planned major dry dock overhaul. The cutter’s departure from Atlantic Beach, N.C. will mark its last from its current homeport. After the overhaul work is completed, the Elm will report to a new homeport in Astoria, Oregon. Coast Guard Cutter Maple, which is presently undergoing a midlife overhaul of its own, will replace the Elm in Atlantic Beach this April.

Magufuli Bans Registration of Foreign Ships in Tanzania

© Igor Groshev / Adobe Stock

Tanzanian President John Magufuli on Friday put a temporary ban on the registration of foreign ships in the country and ordered over 400 vessels to be investigated for allegations of involvement in criminal activity. The ban came after at least five foreign-owned ships flying Tanzania's flag were seized in various parts of the world carrying illegal consignments of weapons and narcotics. The maritime authority in the Indian Ocean archipelago of Zanzibar has in previous years been…

Indian Navy Plane Thwarts Pirate Attack

P-8I. Photo: Indian Navy

The Indian Navy, with the help of its long-range anti-submarine warfare aircraft, has thwarted a "piracy" attempt in the Western Arabian Sea, 800 nautical miles off Mumbai, targeted at a merchant vessel. According to a report in the Times of India, the P-8I, based at the naval air station INS Rajali at Arakkonam in Tamil Nadu, was on a routine surveillance mission over the Arabian Sea when it received distress calls from the merchant vessel, the Malta-flagged MV Sezai Selah, on the international Channel 16 distress radio on April 15.

Indian Navy Fought Off Pirate Attack in Gulf of Aden

INS Trishul. Photo: Indian Navy

A distress call was received from a Foreign Merchant Vessel MV OS 35 (Tuvalu registered vessel), which was attacked and boarded by pirates in the Gulf of Aden late night on 08 April 2017. Indian Navy ships Mumbai, Tarkash, Trishul and Aditya proceeding on deployment to the Mediterranean and passing through the Gulf of Aden, responded to the call and rapidly closed the merchant vessel by the early hours of 09 April 2017. The Indian warships established contact with the Captain of the merchant vessel…

Danish Navy Foils Pirate Attack off Somali Coast

According to a report from AFP, a helicopter from a Danish warship under NATO operational control foiled a pirate attack August 28 on a merchant vessel in the Gulf of Aden. The Danish ship Esbern Snare launched a helicopter in response to a call for help from a merchant vessel, the Danish Navy told AFP. According to the report, a statement from NATO's maritime command said the attacked merchant ship was the Panamanian flagged MV Caribbean Carrier. (Source: AFP)

Pirates Losing Battle to Capture Ships

Piracy Patrol: Photo credit NATO

The NATO  piracy update mentions in its overview of the week, four piracy related incidents in the High Risk Area (HRA):  a Pirate Attack Group (PAG) was disrupted (017/12), one merchant vessel was hijacked (Alert 018/12), one merchant vessel was approached by suspected pirates (NSC 010/12) and one merchant vessel was attacked ( 019/12). As the monsoon period is over and the sea state becomes more favourable for small boats, it is expected that Pirate Attack Group activity will increase in the weather transition period.

Disabled Ship Towed into Port of Djibouti

Photo: EU NAVFOR

Italian merchant vessel MV Altinia was towed into the Port of Djibouti after encountering engine problems which left the ship adrift in the Gulf of Aden. Assisting the stricken vessel was EU Naval Force flagship ESPS Galicia, who responded to the disabled ship’s mayday call while conducting counterpiracy patrols in the region. ESPS Galicia sailed close to MV Altina to provide protection from any potential pirate attack while spare engine parts were acquired from a nearby Combined Task Force 151 warship.

Piracy – Nato Update on Number of Recent Attacks

As it is now the monsoon transition period and the sea states become more favourable for small boats, it is expected that pirate activity will continue to increase. A dhow was hijacked approximately 10 nm northeast of Raas Caseyr light, Somalia, in vicinity of position 12 00N 051 22E. It is believed to be white in colour, and its current location remains unknown. There has been an increase of piracy related activity in the Arabian Sea, as the weather has been favourable for small boats. A merchant vessel was attacked by one skiff approximately 300nm southeast of the Omani coast, in position 16 58N 064 48E  and another merchant vessel was attacked by two skiffs approximately 140nm northeast of Socotra Island.

Ships Remove More Chemical Materials from Syria

Photo: Lars Magne Hovtun, Norwegian Armed Forces

The Danish-led maritime Task Group participating in Operation RECSYR successfully shipped out the second batch of chemical materials from the Syrian Arab Republic in support of the UN-OPCW Joint Mission as mandated by UN Security Resolution 2118. The chemical materials were verified by UN Joint Mission personnel before being loaded onto the Danish merchant vessel ARK FUTURA and the Norwegian merchant vessel TAIKO in the Syrian port of Latakia. The merchant vessels were escorted by two maritime Task Groups…

EU NAVFOR Boards Suspected Pirate Skiff

On the morning of 3 Oct, whilst conducting a patrol in the Gulf of Aden, EU NAVFOR Belgian warship Louise-Marie intercepted a distress call from a merchant vessel transiting in the Gulf of Aden. The merchant vessel reported a skiff, a small boat regularly used by pirates, approaching to 300 meters. The helicopter of EUNAVFOR Belgian Warship Louise-Marie was immediately launched to investigate and it arrived at the scene, the skiff took off at speed from the merchant vessel. Due to the suspicious behavior of the skiff the EUNAVFOR Belgian warship Louise-Marie was ordered to board the skiff. The skiff, took off at great speed and refused to stop when ordered to do so by Louise-Marie.

India to Protect Merchant Ships With On-board Military

Concerned over piracy off the Somali coast in the Gulf of Aden, India is readying an initial 100-man team to protect its merchant vessels in the area. The Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) will take on the responsibility of securing the merchant vessels, under a proposal mooted by the ministry of shipping and, as a pilot project, will train 100 of its personnel for the purpose, a government source told IANS. Currently, Indian Navy ships, among those from other nations, are deployed on escort duties for all vessels in the Gulf of Aden region but it has been felt that specific steps needed to be taken to ensure the security of Indian vessels. According to IANS, Shipping Minister G.K.

BMP Saves Three Vessels from Pirates

Photo courtesy EU NAVFOR

The EU NAVFOR reported that over a period of 15 days, piracy of three merchant vessels was prevented through the use of Best Management Practices, proving the value of such self-protection measures. On 10 October, the MV Kavo Portland, transiting approximately 1,000 nautical miles from the coast in the Somali Basin and the MV Anuket Jade, transiting close to the Tanzanian coast, both reported they were attacked by groups of pirates using rocket propelled grenades or firing. Both vessels altered course…

USS Momsen and Bunker Hill Disrupt Pirate Attack

U.S. Navy photo by Chief Hull Maintenance Technician John Parkin/Released

USS Momsen (DDG 92) and USS Bunker Hill (CG 52) disrupted a pirate attack on Panamanian flagged merchant vessel Duqm, Feb. 2 in the Gulf of Oman. While transiting in international waters, the merchant vessel reported that pirates were attempting to board the vessel. Momsen and Bunker Hill, which were in the vicinity, immediately responded to the Duqm's distress signal and caused two pirates skiffs alongside the vessel with ladders against its hull to flee the area. Momsen and Bunker Hill tracked the skiffs movement and located the mothership that facilitated the attempted boarding of Duqm…

Aker Yards Sells Part of Merchant Biz

The Aker Yard in Florø, Norway.

Aker Yards ASA sold 70 percent of the ownership in three of the yards within its business area Merchant Vessels to FLC West, a Russian owned investment company. When the deal is approved an consummated, Aker Yards will receive EUR 291.9 million from FLC West. Aker Yards ASA has three business areas; Cruise & Ferries, Offshore & Specialized Vessels and Merchant Vessels. The business area Merchant Vessels has shipyards in Florø, Norway, Nikolaev in Ukraine, and in Wismar and Warnemünde in Germany.

Pump Problem Stops Ship

inoperable emergency fire pump on board.The merchant vessel Suijin, which is homeported in Panama, was boarded at the Blair Terminal in Tacoma by a Port State Control Boarding Team from Coast Guard Marine Safety Office Puget Sound to conduct a routine examination. fire pump it was discovered that the Suijin’s emergency fire pump was inoperable, which is a Safety of Life at Sea violation. The Suijin was then required to take corrective action prior to departing the Blair Terminal. The Suijin temporarily fixed the pump and was given permission by the Coast Guard to proceed to their next port of call, Port Hueneme, Calif. The vessel must have the pump replaced before leaving Port Hueneme.

Vessel detained in Tacoma

The Coast Guard detained a merchant vessel Wednesday evening for having an inoperable emergency fire pump on board. The merchant vessel Suijin, which is homeported in Panama, was boarded at the Blair Terminal in Tacoma by a Port State Control Boarding Team from Coast Guard Marine Safety Office Puget Sound to conduct a routine examination. The boarding team began the inspection at 11:00 a.m., while testing the emergency fire pump it was discovered that the Suijin’s emergency fire pump was inoperable, which is a Safety of Life at Sea violation. The Suijin was then required to take corrective action prior to departing the Blair Terminal. The Suijin temporarily fixed the pump and was given permission by the Coast Guard to proceed to their next port of call, Port Hueneme, Calif.

MV Olib G Pirated in Gulf of Aden

Photo courtesy EU NAVFOR

Early on the morning of 8 September, the Merchant Vessel (MV) Olib G, flagged Malta, was pirated in the East part of the Gulf of Aden. After a report from a merchant vessel that a skiff was approaching MV Olib G, and after several unsuccessful attempts to make contact with the vessel, the USS Princeton warship of Task Force 151 launched its helicopter. The helicopter was able to identify two pirates on board MV Olib G. The MV Olib G was sailing West in the Internationally Recommended Transit Corridor through the Gulf of Aden with a cargo of ballast.

Maritime Piracy Activity is at a 22-year Low -Report

In March 2017 fuel tanker Aris 13 was attacked by armed pirates off the coast of Somalia (Photo: EU NAVFOR)

Global maritime piracy activity fell to its lowest level in over two decades, according to the latest International Maritime Bureau (IMB) report. The 180 incidents of piracy and armed robbery against ships reported to the International Chamber of Commerce’s (ICC) IMB in 2017 was the lowest annual number since 1995, when 188 incidents were reported. According to the IMB, pirates boarded 136 vessels in 2017, while 22 attacks were attempted, 16 vessels fired upon and six vessels hijacked.

Golden Nori Vessel Released

GULF OF ADEN (NNS) -- Dock landing ship USS Whidbey Island (LSD 41) is in the Gulf of Aden standing by to provide assistance to the crew of the Merchant Vessel Golden Nori. The Panamanian-flagged vessel is currently underway after pirates departed the vessel Dec. 12. Somalia-based pirates seized the Golden Nori Oct. 28 and held the 23-man crew hostage in Somali territorial waters. Coalition forces continued to monitor the situation, taking appropriate steps to prevent the pirates from resupplying the vessel.

UK Flagged M/V St. James Park Pirated

The M/V St James Park, a UK flagged ship, was pirated Dec. 29 while transiting the Internationally Recognized Transit Corridor (IRTC) through the Gulf of Aden. After receiving a signal from the M/V St James Park's Ship Security Alert System (SSAS), USS Chosin (CG 65), operating as the flagship to Combined Task Force 151 (CTF 151), was able to confirm via bridge-to-bridge radio that pirates had taken control of the vessel. The M/V St James Park is the first vessel since July to be pirated in the IRTC. It has a crew of 26, including Filipinos, Russians, Georgians, Romanians, Bulgarians, Ukrainians, Polish, Indians and Turkish. There are no UK citizens on board.

Agreement to Develop Gas-Fueled Ships

Wärtsilä and Samsung Heavy Industries (SHI) have signed a co-operation agreement to develop gas-fuelled merchant vessels. The intention is to jointly develop next-generation ships with efficient and competitive propulsion machinery concepts that meet or exceed the demands of future environmental regulations. The focus of the Wärtsilä/SHI joint study will be on utilizing liquefied natural gas (LNG) as fuel for operating vessels. This is especially relevant in Emission Control Areas (ECAs). Wärtsilä's input will be related to the propulsion machinery, with particular reference to large bore, dual-fuel engines combined with mechanical propulsion solutions. SHI will concentrate on the design of highly efficient vessels incorporating fuel storage facilities and gas-powered propulsion machinery.

USCG Assists in Ship Fire

The U.S. Coast Guard is coordinating assistance for the crew of a merchant vessel reportedly battling an on-board fire 1,200 miles east of Cape Cod, Mass., on April 10. The 577-foot Panamanian-flagged merchant vessel Sea Venus, with a crew of 23, was en route from Rhode Island to Belgium when the fire reportedly started. Coast Guard watch standers at Rescue Coordination Center Norfolk, located in Portsmouth, Va., detected a satellite distress signal from Sea Venus' electronic position indicating radio beacon (EPIRB) around 7:30 a.m. this morning and are coordinating assistance using an aircraft and vessel from the Canadian Navy, and two merchant vessels, the Challenge Plus and Olympian Highway.

NATO Piracy Retrospect of Past Week

Image credit EUNAVFOR

On 29 June 2012 a dhow Pirate Attack Group (PAG) was disrupted at position 14 02N 051 25E approximately 145nm North West of Socotra Island. This is the same dhow which attacked a merchant vessel on 27 Jun at position 14 23N 054 38E. Pictures supplied from the merchant vessel during this recent attack led to the rapid release of this pirated dhow. Activity over the past two weeks shows that pirate activity can still take place during the South-West Monsoon and that pirates are operating closer to shore to avoid severe conditions further out to sea.

Maritime Reporter Magazine Cover Dec 2017 - The Great Ships of 2017

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