Port News

27 Mar 2020

USNS Mercy Arrives in Los Angeles

USNS Mercy (T-AH 19) arrives in Los Angeles March 27. (U.S. Navy photo by David Mora Jr.)

U.S. Navy hospital ship USNS Mercy (T-AH 19) arrived in Los Angeles, Friday to support the nation’s COVID-19 response efforts.While in Los Angeles, the ship will serve as a referral hospital for non-COVID-19 patients currently admitted to shore-based hospitals, and will provide a full spectrum of medical care to include general surgeries, critical care and ward care for adults. This will allow local health professionals to focus on treating COVID-19 patients and for shore-based hospitals to use their Intensive Care Units and ventilators for those patients.Operated by Military Sealift Command…

27 Mar 2020

VT Halter to Build Additional US Navy Barge

(Photo: VT Halter Marine)

VT Halter Marine said it has been awarded a contract option for the U.S. Navy’s fourth Auxiliary Personnel Lighter–Small (APL(S)) 67 Class berthing and messing barge. The contract award is $39,906,609 for a firm, fixed-price option for the detail design and construction of the vessel.The Pascagoula, Miss. shipbuilder has been up and running throughout the COVID-19 outbreak and is currently constructing the first three APLs. In September 2018, the company received the initial contract to design and build two units, with options for four additional units.

27 Mar 2020

'Significant' GPS Interference Incidents Reported

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The U.S. Maritime Administration (MARAD) is advising vessel operators to exercise extra caution and safe navigation practices after multiple instances of significant GPS interference have been reported over the last year by vessels in port and underway in the eastern and central Mediterranean Sea, the Persian Gulf, and the Port of Shanghai, China.The incidents have resulted in lost or inaccurate GPS signals affecting bridge navigation, GPS-based timing, and communications equipment…

27 Mar 2020

Britain Suspends IMO 2020 Shipping Fuel Checks Due to Coronavirus

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Britain has suspended checks on ships for compliance with low sulphur fuel regulations as part of wider measures that cut back on inspections to reduce the impact of the coronavirus outbreak on supply chains, the coastguard authority said on Friday.The coronavirus has created growing logistical problems for freight as countries try to keep goods moving despite lockdown in many parts of the world.At the start of the year, regulations came into effect - known as MARPOL Annex VI - that make it mandatory for ships to use fuel with a sulphur content of 0.5%…

27 Mar 2020

Transnet to Cut Transport of Non-Essential Cargo During Lockdown

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South Africa's logistics firm Transnet said it would reduce transport services and non-essential cargo operations during a nationwide lockdown that began at midnight on Thursday to contain the coronavirus.The state-owned company said shipments of metals and minerals would depend on demand and government approval. It was unclear if these exports would be affected.The transport of coal to state-run utility Eskom's power stations would continue, Transnet said.Transnet operates nearly three quarters of the African rail network…

27 Mar 2020

Sleipnir Completes Largest Ever LNG Bunkering

Sleipnir takes on the world's largest ever LNG bunkering (Photo: Heerema)

The world's most powerful semi-submersible crane vessel received the largest liquefied natural gas (LNG) bunkering ever completed.On Thursday, Titan LNG performed the bunkering of Heerema's Sleipnir, using the Coral Fraseri, Anthony Veder's LNG carrier in the Port of Rotterdam. The total quantity of LNG delivered was almost 3,300 metric tons, making this the largest LNG bunkering to have ever taken place. Sleipnir arrived at the Port of Rotterdam on Sunday, March 22, following a global campaign, and the LNG bunkering delivery took less then 24 hours to complete.

27 Mar 2020

Nigeria Imposes Cargo Vessel Restrictions to Curb Coronavirus Spread

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Nigeria will only allow cargo vessels that have been at sea for more than two weeks to dock in its ports to prevent the spread of coronavirus, President Muhammadu Buhari said on Thursday.Health experts fear a widespread outbreak in Africa's most populous country of 200 million people which could overwhelm its creaking healthcare system.Nigeria has closed its land borders and international airports in the last week to curb the spread of the virus.Buhari said on Twitter he had issued a directive that "only cargo vessels that have been at sea for more than 14 days be allowed to dock in our ports…

27 Mar 2020

Fully Laden LNG Tankers Sit Idle Off Indian Ports after Force Majeure

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At least five fully-laden liquefied natural gas (LNG) tankers are idling offshore India, as yet unable to discharge their cargoes, after importers there declared force majeure earlier this week, according to an analyst and shipping sources.Gas demand is falling globally amid the fast-spreading coronavirus which has capped industrial output, forcing LNG tankers in several regions to remain at sea fully laden with no immediate destination, the sources said.At least three major buyers in India…

26 Mar 2020

Ferry Industry Seeks Financial Assistance Amid COVID-19

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Ferry operators stuggling financially due to the COVID-19 pandemic will need government backing to help offset billions of dollars of unsustainable losses, Interferry says.The trade association is asking governments globally to include the ferry industry in their respective COVID-19 financial aid packages so that ferry operators can continue providing essential services, and to ensure that critical infrastructure and personnel are available once the global economy begins to recover.Specifically…

26 Mar 2020

P&O Boosts Freight to Keep Goods Flowing in Virus Outbreak

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British ferry and shipping freight company P&O said on Wednesday it will ramp up freight operations to improve the flow of essential goods between Britain and mainland Europe as passenger numbers dwindle during the coronavirus outbreak."P&O Ferries is doing vital work to ensure the supplies of food, medicines and other supplies to millions of people," chief executive officer Janette Bell said in a statement."I urge all governments to back the commitment of our colleagues by designating port workers as key workers, to secure further the flow of goods." (Reporting by Kate Holton and Andy Bruce;

26 Mar 2020

CMA CGM Completes Sale of Eight Terminals

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CMA CGM said on Thursday it has completed the sale of stakes in eight port terminals for $815 million to its joint venture with China Merchants Port Group.Late last year, CMA CGM reached a deal with China Merchants to sell stakes in 10 port terminals to the companies' Terminal Link venture for $968 million, as part of efforts by CMA CGM to finance its acquisition of Swiss-based CEVA Logistics and reduce group debt.The first eight terminals included in the transaction are Odessa Terminal (Ukraine)…

26 Mar 2020

MAN Cryo Develops Liquefied Methane Terminal in Swedish Port

MAN Energy Solutions has been comissioned to develope and construct a liquefied methane terminal in the port of Oxelösund, Sweden  (Photo: MAN Energy Solutions)

OxGas, a company fully owned by the Port of Oxelösund in Sweden has commissioned MAN Energy Solutions to act as “owners engineer” in the development and construction of a multi-functional terminal for liquefied methane based fuels in the port of Oxelösund. The terminal will be designed to feed both liquefied natural gas (LNG) and green methane derived from bio gas to SSAB ’s steel production in Oxelösund, and to re-distribute it via train and trailers to other parts of Sweden.The…

26 Mar 2020

Meatpacker JBS Flags Export Logistics Issues Amid Coronavirus

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Brazil's JBS SA, the world's largest meatpacker, has identified potential logistics issues amid the coronavirus crisis including container shortages and port disruptions, according to executives discussing earnings results on Thursday.JBS executives said in a call on fourth-quarter earnings results that its export operations had not been hit by any disruptions, such as those that have affected frozen container cargos arriving in China in recent weeks. They said the company is banking on its long-term relationships with shipping providers to keep exports flowing.

26 Mar 2020

Singapore Passenger Vessel Sector to Receive Economic Aid

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Economic relief is on its way for Singapore's passenger vessel owners and operators, as well as passenger terminal operators, who have seen a drop in passenger volumes due to the COVID-19 outbreak, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Finance, Heng Swee Keat, announced Thursday, as part of the Resilience Budget.The 50% port dues concession to passenger vessels from March 1 to August 31, announced by the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore's (MPA) in February, will extend for another four months until December 31, 2020.

26 Mar 2020

More Bad News for Bulkers, as South African Ports Close for Mineral Exports

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South Africa's main export terminals will be closed to mineral exports from midnight on Thursday when a nationwide 21-day lockdown over coronavirus begins, disrupting copper supply chains linking major producer Zambia to Asian consumers.Miners in the Zambian copper belt typically transport copper overland to South Africa's ports, where it is exported mainly to China, the world's biggest consumer of the metal."All bulk terminals (mineral mining commodities) will be closed," a note from Transnet Port Terminals read, according to a shipping agent.

25 Mar 2020

Three Sailors on US Aircraft Carrier Have Coronavirus

Aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71) (U.S. Navy photo by Kaylianna Genier)

Three U.S. sailors on board the Theodore Roosevelt aircraft carrier in the Pacific tested positive for the coronavirus, U.S. Navy officials said on Tuesday, the first known cases of the virus on board a U.S. military ship at sea.Acting U.S. Navy Secretary Thomas Modly told a news conference that the three had been quarantined and were being flown off the ship. The ship has about 5,000 personnel on board.Chief of Naval Operations Admiral Mike Gilday said the ship was last in port in Vietnam about 15 days ago.

25 Mar 2020

Libya says Probe of Seized Tanker to Start After Quarantine

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Libya's internationally recognized government will start an investigation into a tanker over alleged sanctions-breaking after a period of quarantine ends in two weeks, the coast guard commander who seized the vessel said on Wednesday.The coast guard at Misrata seized the Gulf Petroleum 4 three days ago, Rida Issa said, after the National Oil Corporation (NOC) said the tanker had broken an arms embargo and other international agreements by offloading jet fuel in Benghazi.Benghazi…

25 Mar 2020

DP World Berbera Orders 8 RTG Cranes

Photo: Liebherr Container Cranes

Liebherr Container Cranes and DP World Berbera have signed a contract for the supply of eight RTGs for DP World’s terminal in Berbera, Somaliland. The cranes are due to be ready for operation before the end of 2020.The high performance, variable speed diesel RTGs are six containers plus a truck lane wide and will stack one over five containers high. The machines are supplied with DGPS autosteering and stack profiling. Like all Liebherr RTGs, the machines incorporate Liebherr’s eight rope reeving no-sway-system.

25 Mar 2020

Chevron Marine Launches Digital Platform

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Fuels and lubricants supplier Chevron Marine launched a suite of digital solutions offering ship owners and operators tools with which to analyze, manage and ultimately help to improve their operational performance.Chevron Marine Cloud Solutions, including the customer order management platform OnePort launched last year, were developed under Chevron’s Business Technology Innovation (BTI) initiative as part of an ongoing, multi-year digitization investment program. The solutions are designed to integrate with customers’ processes…

25 Mar 2020

A Cruise Ship is Australia's Worst Coronavirus Cluster

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Greg Butler was rushed to hospital with COVID-19 within days of getting home to self-isolate after being allowed off the Ruby Princess cruise liner in Sydney, one of more than 130 passengers who tested positive in Australia’s worst coronavirus outbreak.One of them, a woman, died earlier this week.The 56-year-old Butler had been holidaying with his partner, Robin Russ, who remains in isolation.“I tested negative and he tested positive,” Russ said over the telephone from the apartment they moved to for quarantine.After disembarking at Sydney Harbour on March 19…

25 Mar 2020

St. Lawrence Seaway/Great Lakes Shipping Season Commences

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The St. Lawrence Seaway’s 62nd navigation season kicked off on Tuesday with the transit of the Canadian-flagged cement carrier NACC Argonaut through Lock 8 on the Welland Canal.Then, in the early hours on Wednesday morning, first U.S.-flag commercial vessel transited the locks at Sault Ste. Marie, Mich., signaling the start of the U.S. fleet's 2020 sailing season.The Seaway’s Montreal / Lake Ontario section will open on April 1 this year, eight days after the opening of the Welland Canal.

25 Mar 2020

Indian LNG Importers Issue Force Majeure Notices

An LNG Tanker - Image by donvictori0 - AdobeStock

Indian liquefied natural gas (LNG) importers have started to issue force majeure notices as domestic gas demand slumps and as port operations in the country get hit by a lockdown to curb the spread of coronavirus, sources told Reuters."Demand has reduced drastically and it is likely to go down further, a company source with Gail (India) said."Only fertilizer, power and refineries are running at parcel loads.

24 Mar 2020

Containership Captain Medevaced in the Caribbean

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The U.S. Coast Guard medically evacuated the Captain of the 734-foot Singapore-flagged containership M/V Maersk Batam, approximately 100 nautical miles south of Puerto Rico, Monday night.The containership captain, a U.K. citizen, was experiencing life threatening symptoms of a possible stroke during the ship’s transit from St. Marta, Colombia to their next scheduled port call in Southhampton, England.Coast Guard Sector San Juan watchstanders received the medevac request at 9:55 a.m.