West Coast News

01 Apr 2020

US Shipyards Forge Ahead Through COVID-19

The 56-foot icebreaking tugboat being built by Blount Boats for N.Y. Power Authority (NYPA). (Photo: Blount Boats)

As the novel coronavirus and its impacts continue to spread across America, U.S. shipbuilders, by and large, continue to build. While most yards have been deemed essential to marine transportation and/or national security and have been able to maintain operations, the situation at and around every shipyard is different, and there are several builders across the country that have had to temporarily suspend activity. In either scenario, it’s far from business as usual for America’s…

01 Apr 2020

China's Ports Brace for Second Hit as Virus Spread Wipes Out Exports

© lotusjeremy / Adobe Stock

China's ports and shipping firms are bracing for a second wave of supply chain disruptions that may be deeper and more prolonged than during the country's coronavirus lockdown as the global spread of the virus chokes off international demand.With Beijing reporting only sporadic domestic transmission of the coronavirus since March, workers have been allowed to return to posts, factories are restarting and ports are rushing to clear a backlog of cargoes.But with virus outbreaks now overwhelming healthcare systems and shutting logistics channels in other major economies…

30 Mar 2020

ABS Helps Ensure Readiness of US Hospital Ships

U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Joshua D. Sheppard/Released

ABS made a key contribution to the nation’s COVID-19 response effort, helping ensure the readiness of two ABS-classed U.S. Navy hospital ships.ABS surveyors on the U.S. East and West coast helped the USNS Mercy and the USNS Comfort sail to provide urgently needed hospital beds in New York and Los Angeles.USNS Mercy was in her home port in San Diego making preparations for a large shipyard repair package scheduled to begin in April. Her activation was advanced to support California’s request for the vessel to berth in Los Angeles.

26 Mar 2020

Crowley Charters Newbuild Tug from Brusco

(Photo: Crowley)

Crowley Maritime Corp said Friday its marine services group has entered into a bareboat charter with Brusco Tug and Barge for an all new RApport-design tractor tug to serve Pacific Northwest and California ports, performing ship assist and harbor escort work.The vessel, which Crowley will rename Hercules after delivery next week, was designed by Robert Allan Ltd., and constructed by Diversified Marine in Portland, Ore., for Brusco. The 82-foot, 6,000-horsepower tug is powered by twin Caterpillar 3516E (2240kw@1,800rpm) U.S. EPA Tier IV-compliant engines.

19 Mar 2020

Trump Says Carnival Offers Ships for Medical Use

(File photo: Carnival Corp)

U.S. President Donald Trump revealed Thursday that Carnival Corp. chairman Micky Arison has said he will make some cruise ships from his idled fleet available to be used in addition to the U.S. Navy hospital ships being deployed in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.“This morning, I spoke with Micky Arison of Carnival Cruise Lines and he’s going to make ships available. So in addition to the big medical ships that you have coming, if we need ships with lots of rooms, they’ll be docked at New York and Los Angeles and San Francisco…

19 Mar 2020

US to Deploy Hospital Ships for Coronavirus Response

The USNS Mercy (Photo: Zach Kreitzer, U.S. Navy)

Two U.S. Navy hospital ships are being prepared to aid shoreside medical facilities that could become overrun by the coronavirus pandemic, the Pentagon's chief spokesman said.The USNS Comfort and USNS Mercy will be deployed "as needed to assist potentially overwhelmed counties with acute patient care" as part of the Defense Department's response to the pandemic, Jonathan Rath Hoffman, assistant to the defense secretary for public affairs, said during a news conference at the Pentagon on Wednesday.The Comfort is now in Norfolk…

18 Mar 2020

Seaspan Shipyards Maintains Operations

(Photo: Eric Haun)

Seaspan Shipyards said its operations remain up and running as the Canadian shipbuilder continues to closely watch the fast-developing COVID-19 situation.Seaspan, which operates shipyards in Vancouver and Victoria on Canada's west coast, noted it is following the guidance and direction of public health and government authorities, and added that it has not received a recommendation or directive to shut down operations in B.C. It said no Seaspan employee has tested positive for COVID-19 to date."As COVID-19 developments continue to unfold…

13 Mar 2020

Japanese Wind Fans Bank Interest

Domestic and international lenders are vying for a slice of Japan’s nascent offshore wind power sector, which is expected to provide as much as ¥3trn (US$29bn) in project financing opportunities, albeit at very low margins.Akita Offshore Wind completed the nation’s first fundraising for a major offshore wind project last month, raising ¥80bn to build wind turbines near two ports in western Japan.Auctions for sites off Japan's shores are due to kick off in April, and lenders are…

09 Mar 2020

US Retailers Face $700 Mln Hit as Virus Disrupts Shipping

© Brad Nixon / Adobe Stock

U.S. retailers face an estimated $700 million sales hit from the coronavirus and some shipping lines are sending vessels to retrieve empty cargo containers from Los Angeles to prevent further supply disruptions.The extended shutdown of factories in China caused by the virus, travel restrictions on workers and canceled sailings by shipping lines have thrown off the movement of containers, resulting in a surplus at the Port of Los Angeles and a shortage in Germany.U.S. retailers'…

03 Mar 2020

Foss Maritime Christens Tier 4 Tug

Jamie Ann (Photo: Foss Maritime)

Seattle-based Foss Maritime christened the new 90-ton tugboat Jamie Ann on February 29.The first of four new ASD-90 tugs under construction at Nichols Brothers Boat Builders in Freeland, Wash., the newbuild will be followed by sister vessels Sarah Averick, Leisa Florence and Rachael Allen, all scheduled to be delivered this year for service within the Saltchuk Marine family of companies.Jamie Ann’s upgrades include two MTU Tier 4 engines producing 6,866 horsepower which meet the EPA’s highest standards.

02 Mar 2020

Cargo Ship Captain and Crew Found Guilty in Cocaine Bust

© Benjamín Marfil / MarineTraffic.com

The Russian captain and crew of a cargo ship captured last year in Cape Verde with the biggest cocaine haul ever seized in the country were found guilty of drug trafficking and sentenced to jail on Friday.The 9.5 tonnes of cocaine were seized in February 2019 after the ship, which was traveling to Morocco from South America, docked at the port of Praia for legal reasons following the death of a crew member.An Atlantic archipelago of 500,000 people off Africa’s west coast, Cape…

25 Feb 2020

Marine News' 2020 ATB Report

(Photo: Vane Bros.)

There’s a barge full of reasons why many operators turn to ATBs.A  mainstay of the U.S. coastwise dirty and refined products trades, articulated tug barges (ATB) have increasingly filled a void left as the fleet of Jones Act tankers (with crew complement requirements exceeding that of tugs) has aged out. With the cargo capacity of the larger ATBs – some with barges exceeding 300,000 barrels capacity – rivalling that of workhorse tankers that had served oil consuming regions, the concept certainly makes sense from a supply and distribution perspective.With 50…

24 Feb 2020

DP World Buys North American Terminal

Image: DP World

Dubai-based port operator DP World announced it has completed the acquisition of Fraser Surrey Docks in Canada from Macquarie Infrastructure Partners (MIP) alongside its partner Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ).The enabler of global trade said in a press release that said the acquisition complements its footprint in Canada, which also includes terminal operations in Vancouver, Nanaimo, Prince Rupert and St John’s, without disclosing the value of the purchase.The integrated coast-to-coast platform provides customers with bulk…

24 Feb 2020

Hybrid drives: Siemens sends in the machines

A robot’s battle against emissions: Siemens articulated robots of different sizes assemble battery stacks at Trondheim, Norway. 
Credit: William Stoichevski

Encouraged by the success of a hybrid drives program, Siemens is going all out in Norway to automate production of that core marine energy storage enabler, the lithium battery. Offshore service vessel charterers, rig owners, ferry operators and ship owners are the target market. Trondheim’s technical university and a recent history of hosting battery makers and system integrators has made it launchpad for new applications involving the new BlueDrive Plus C drives and batteries.Siemens’ Norwegian head of strategy and business development…

11 Feb 2020

Vessel Inspections: It's All About Safety

USCG marine inspectors at Marine Safety Unit Portland inspect a tug in Portland, Ore. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Paige Hause)

With the announcements that New York Waterway, a ferry operator running 32 boats around New York and New Jersey waters, had been largely shut down by the U.S. Coast Guard just prior to Thanksgiving, 2019, the reactions ranged from surprise to outright shock. There was also a great deal of grumbling, as commuters, the major customer group, endured delays on New York Waterway’s extensive network across the Hudson River, bringing New Jersey commuters into New York’s business districts.So, what happened?

10 Feb 2020

Tanker Crew Rescues Seven from Sinking Fishing Vessel

An tanker picked up seven crew embers from a sinking fishing vessel in the Gulf of Finland.While en-route from the Port of Ust-Luga to Copenhagen on February 6, the tanker SСF Angara received a distress signal from the Russian fishing trawler Pongoma, which was sinking on the traverse of Tallinn, 26 nautical miles offshore, SCF Group said on Monday.The tanker and her crew, under the leadership of master Alexey Maksimovsky, responded to the request for help, and following the instructions received from the rescue center in Tallinn, diverted to assist the ship in distress.During a rescue operation, all seven members of Pongoma’s crew were brought aboard the tanker. Two fishermen in need of urgent medical care were then evacuated by helicopter to Helsinki.

07 Feb 2020

Study: How Changes in Shipping Patterns Affect Whales

Blue whale in the Pacific Ocean. Photo credit: Jessica Morten, Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary, National Ocean Service, NOAA

Understanding how changes in shipping traffic and distributions of fin, humpback, and blue whales in the Pacific Ocean affect the risk of whales being struck by ships is the focus of a new study published in the scientific journal, Frontiers. The findings also have implications for highly endangered North Atlantic right whales in the Atlantic Ocean.Dr. Jessica V. Redfern, an Ecologist, Senior Scientist, and Chair of the new Spatial Ecology, Mapping, and Assessment Program (EcoMap) at the New England Aquarium’s Anderson Cabot Center for Ocean Life, is the lead author of the study.

06 Feb 2020

Coronavirus Disrupts Global Container Shipping

© naypong / Adobe Stock

China's fast-spreading coronavirus is throwing the global container shipping trade out of sync, with lines re-routing cargoes and reducing calls to Chinese ports, setting the scene for months of delivery delays ahead, industry sources said.The spread of the deadly virus has shut down cities and factories in China and disrupted global air travel.China's decision to extend its Lunar New Year holiday period until Feb. 10 has compounded logistical complications, despite its ports staying open.

06 Feb 2020

Harley Marine Rebrands as Centerline

(File photo: Harley Marine Services)

Harley Marine Services has changed its name to Centerline Logistics Corporation and rebranded its regional operations in parallel following an equity ownership change in July 2019.Matt Godden, Centerline Logistics President and CEO, said, “Over the last year the company has made significant progress in restructuring its operations and this branding change signals our renewed strength and vision to remain a leader in the marine transportation business.”The name change follows a ratings affirmation of the company’s senior credit facility by Kroll Bond Rating Agencyon December 16…

03 Feb 2020

BC Ferries Orders LNG-powered Ferry

BC Ferries has awarded Remontowa Shipbuilding S.A. a contract to build an additional liquefied natural gas (LNG)-fueled vessel scheduled to go into service in the Southern Gulf Islands in 2022.This vessel will be identical to the three Salish Class vessels built by Remontowa for BC Ferries in 2016.“Our Clean Futures Plan is our path to replace diesel fuels with clean erenergy options. While this cannot be achieved in a single step, we arecontinually seeking energy sources that offer a cleaner…

30 Jan 2020

AAM Wins Deal with Birdon America

Photo: Birdon America

All American Marine, Inc. (AAM) has been named the West Coast shipyard by Birdon America, Inc., for Phase I of a contract to perform a Service Life Extension Program (SLEP) on a number of United States Coast Guard’s (USCG) fleet of Motor Life Boats (MLB).AAM is currently working on two MLBs at its shop, with a plan to ramp up to eight MLB vessels each year during Phase II. Birdon America was awarded the prime contract to perform Service Life Extension work on all MLBs in the U.S. Coast Guard’s fleet.The current in-service MLBs were designed by the USCG and built from 1997 to 2003.

27 Jan 2020

Matson Promotes Three

(Photo: Matson)

U.S. carrier Matson announced it promoted three executives to the company's senior leadership team, effective immediately.Branton "Bal" Dreyfus, Vice President, Alaska, has been promoted to Senior Vice President, Alaska in recognition of Matson's growing scope of operations, continuing investment in and long-term commitment to serving Alaska. Dreyfus will continue to report directly to Matt Cox, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer.Capt. John "Jack" Sullivan, Vice President, Vessel Operations and Engineering…

15 Jan 2020

Crowley Realigns Its Marine Services Group

(Photo: Crowley)

US-based Crowley Maritime Corp. announced on Wednesday that it has realigned its marine services organization and introduced new leadership.In a move that aims to provide better support to customers, Crowley Marine Services, part of the company’s shipping arm, will now be comprised of three distinct, yet interrelated business segments: offshore services, ship assist and tanker escort and engineering services – those provided by Crowley and subsidiary Jensen Maritime Consultants.Jeff Andreini…

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