What’s the latest?

A round up of the latest news for marine and maritime readers…..

FULLERS PAYS $130,000 AFTER WHARF COLLISION

Auckland ferry company, Fullers Group, has been fined $40,000 and ordered to pay reparations of $90,000 after passengers were injured when the Auckland ferry Kea collided with Victoria wharf at Devonport on 17 February 2015. The company pleaded guilty to a charge laid by Maritime NZ under the Health and Safety in Employment Act that it failed to take all practical steps to ensure no action or inaction by an employee harmed any other person. Sentencing took place in Auckland District Court last week.

Maritime NZ Regional Compliance Manager, Northern, Neil Rowarth said kea wharf collisionwhile the company had identified problems with the vessel’s digital control system, it had failed to adequately manage the risk to ensure the safety of passengers and crew. A new control system installed on the Kea in October 2104 was designed to allow the master to control the vessel from four separate stations on the bridge.  Faults were identified with the system when transferring control between stations in the system’s automatic mode of operation.

Fullers continued to operate the Kea.  To address the risks from the control system issues, Fullers implemented procedures which included switching off the control system’s automatic mode and operating it manually.  However, this was inadequate to mitigate risks to passengers and crew, because allowing masters to transfer control between stations while the vessel was moving, increased the risk of an incident if the manual transfer process failed.  Masters had previously experienced situations when control did not transfer properly between stations when the vessel was operating in manual mode.

On the day of the incident, the master attempted to transfer control between stations, as permitted under Fullers’ operating parameters.  The transfer was unsuccessful and the master lost control of one of the vessel’s thrusters and it hit the wharf at a speed of approximately 13 km/h (7 knots). Because bench seating on the main deck of the vessel was not secured, the impact with the wharf caused the seating to topple forward landing on some passengers. At least 19 passengers were injured, ranging from cuts and bruises to a serious concussion.

“This sentence should send a strong message to industry that risks must be properly managed,” Mr Rowarth said.  “The company advised Maritime NZ that a procedure was in place to manage issues with the control system but this procedure was not sufficient to properly manage the risk. When the collision occurred, unsecured seating exacerbated the harm to passengers. The need to have adequately secured seating was especially important because of known problems with the control system.

“Paying passengers and crew working on board should feel safe in the knowledge that procedures are in place to manage risks and a vessel is in the right condition to operate safely. This was clearly not the case in this instance,” he said.

After being detained by Maritime NZ after the incident, the Kea returned to service in July 2015 after inspection by a recognised surveyor. The charges were laid under the health and safety legislation in force at the time of the collision, the Health and Safety in Employment Act. The current legislation, the Health and Safety at Work Act, came into force in April 2016.

Source – Maritime New Zealand.

US COAST GUARD RESCUE FOR REAL ENROUTE TO HONOLULU

Just a day after taking part in a multi-national rescue drill over Auckland Harbour, the crew of a US Coast Guard C-130 Hercules has helped save six Tongan fishermen while enroute home to Honolulu.

This time it was a ‘real live’ joint services exercise, with the Rescue Coordination Centre of New Zealand coordinating the Coast Guard crew, and Tongan Police and Tongan Navy to collect the missing fishermen at 6am.  RCCNZ Senior Search and Rescue Officer Greg Johnston said the C-130 Hercules was about to head home from Whenuapai to Honolulu, after attending the Pacific Search and Rescue Conference in Auckland, when a call came in at 11.30am from Tongan Police.

The alarm had been raised with Police about a missing group of six that had been at sea for a week. RCCNZ calculated the search area and were aware the US Coast Guard C-130 would be flying through this part of the Pacific. Greg said the Coast Guard crew spotted the six men in their 12 metre vessel shortly after entering the search area, about 90 kilometres off-shore from Tongatapu Island. They dropped the stricken men food, water, a radio and a transponder.

RCCNZ then liaised with Tongan Police and the Tongan Navy about their location and rescue by sea. A Navy vessel headed to the location overnight, and  picked up the men the next morning.

Source – Maritime New Zealand

KIWIRAIL SWOOPS ONTO FERRY PURCHASE

KiwiRail has announced its purchase of the Interislander ferry Kaitaki before its lease expires in 2020. The Kaitaki is the largest domestic passenger ferry operating in New Zealand, and has been leased from Dublin-based Irish Ferries since 2005.

“It has proved itself on what can be a challenging route,” KiwiRail chief executive Peter Reidy said.  There was strong competition for secondhand ferries, and it was best to snap up Kaitaki before its lease expired.

A worldwide shortage of suitable secondhand ferries, and heavy competition for those ships, meant there was no certainty it would be available after its lease expired.

“The best option was to take up the opportunity to purchase the ferry,” Mr Reidy said. “The Interislander fleet is the extension of SH1 across Cook Strait. Our ships are vital for tourism, and an important piece of the integrated transport network for freight, with road and rail working together to help drive New Zealand’s growth. Nearly 190,000 people are directly employed in the tourism sector, and ensuring visitors are able to travel between the North Island and the South Island easily makes sure that the benefits – and the jobs – are spread through the country.”

STRAIT NUMBERS

* Up to 4000 sailings a year

* Kaitaki can carry up to 1350 passengers, more than the Aratere and the Kaiarahi combined.

* Last financial year KiwiRail’s Interislander ferries carried more than 1 million net tonnes of freight

* Consisting of 83,000 commercial vehicles and 800,000 passengers

 Source – Stuff

CONSULTATION OVER POLAR WATERS AND PROTECTION RULES

The International Maritime Organization (IMO) has developed a new code for ships in polar waters, and made other changes to improve safety of ships, crew, and the environment.

Maritime NZ Director, Keith Manch, said consultation begins tomorrow (Thursday) on how New Zealand will apply these changes.

“When international codes are made or changed, New Zealand must change our maritime and marine protection rules to meet our obligations,” Mr Manch said.

“We are contacting the maritime industry asking for its comments about the proposed changes. The overall aim is safer ships, safer crew, and less risk to the environment.”

The IMO’s Polar Code has two parts – ship safety and environmental protection. The Code improves ship safety by heightening requirements for ship structure, stability, lifesaving, navigation and other matters.

Antarctic waters already have special environmental protection under the IMO’s “MARPOL” convention from oil, sewage, garbage and chemicals. The new Polar Code will extend similar environmental protections to Arctic waters.

The consultation also includes:

  •     a new code for ships powered by liquefied natural gas and other similar fuels – this is a new technology starting to be used overseas but not yet on ships in New Zealand
  •     additional safety requirements for ships carrying dangerous chemicals in bulk and solid bulk cargoes
  •     minor changes tightening rules about oil
  •     minor changes tightening evacuation rules.

Consultation documents will be on the Maritime NZ website at www.maritimenz.govt.nz/public/consultation/ . Submissions close 5pm, Thursday, 22 June 2017.

IMO video about the Polar Code http://www.imo.org/en/MediaCentre/PressBriefings/Pages/15-Polar-film.aspx

Source – Maritime NZ.

FAMOUS SHIP ‘EDWIN FOX’ GOES HI-TECH

One of the oldest ships in the world is about to set a new course for preserving the “rich relics of human history”. The Edwin Fox, which sits in dry dock in Picton, is virtually ship shape again after 7700 high-resolution photographs and 48 laser scans.

The end result is to recreate the ship to her original glory, complete with billowing sails. If successful, the technology could be used across the globe to safeguard the future of other ancient treasures.  The team at 3-d Scan in Auckland have undertaken the groundbreaking project.

edwin fox under cover  edwin fox 2 painting

The hull of the Edwin Fox, at left, is under the care of the Edwin Fox Maritime Museum in Picton. Pix Scott Hammond, Fairfax NZ. AT right, a painting of the vessel in her heyday.

Team leader Hennie van der Merwe said the Edwin Fox is a ship of international significance.

“She has a New Zealand heritage and her age and rarity has a global reach. Due to neglect before her rescue and the ravages of time, she is the perfect candidate to be digitally reconstructed,” he said.

The ship was manufactured in India in 1853. It is the world’s ninth oldest wooden troop ship and was used to carry soldiers to the Crimean War, convicts to Australia and immigrants from the United Kingdom to New Zealand.

Today, she is cared for by staff at the Edwin Fox Maritime Museum. The team at 3-d Scan have also supplied some of their 3D images to maritime archeologist Kurt Bennett who is due to give a speech on the ship in Spain next month. But she is at risk of toppling and being damaged in earthquakes, making the scanning important, Hennie says.

To create a digital reproduction of the ship in minute detail is a big task and Hennie and his team of four have taken 7700 high-resolution photographs and 48 laser scans. The end result will allow people to see detail not visible to the naked eye.

Hennie, who has launched a Kickstarter campaign to raise money for the charitable project, says recreating the Edwin Fox in digital form is almost the same as having to build the ship from scratch.

edwin fox skipper

Roger Williams, the great grandson of Edwin Fox captain John Ellis Johnson visiting from Australia in 2014. 

CGI artist Katarina Markovic has already donated 700 hours of work to the project, which needs another 3000 hours before it is finished.

“With every passing year, the world’s physical history is decaying,” Hennie said. “Museums around the world strive to preserve the past, but they can only do so much. By digitally preserving the Edwin Fox, we aim to demonstrate how today’s cutting-edge technology is an essential tool for preserving the rich relics of human history.”

To contribute to the campaign visit kickstarter.com.

Source  – The Marlborough Express

STRAITSMAN IS FIRST CERTIFICATION UNDER MLC

straitsman certification

Chatting at the MLC certificate presentation ceremony are, from left,  Sam Nariman, Marine Manager at Bureau Veritas; Stephen Hoedemaeckers, Straitsman Master; and Keith Manch, Director of Maritime NZ.

Cook Strait passenger ferry the Straitsman is the first New Zealand ship to be certified under the international Maritime Labour Convention (MLC).

Maritime New Zealand congratulated Strait Shipping for being the first commercial operator of vessels of 200 gross tonnage or more to comply with MLC, which came into force in New Zealand on March 9 this year. The certificate was presented by Bureau Veritas, the first classification society to issue such a certificate under delegation from Maritime NZ.

The International Labour Organization convention aims to protect international and domestic seafarers and improve their safety and wellbeing onboard foreign-flagged and New Zealand vessels.

“We’re very pleased to see the first New Zealand ship certified under this convention,” says Keith Manch, Director of Maritime NZ. “Today is the culmination of a significant amount of work for Maritime NZ and the commercial maritime sector – in working through changes to the Maritime Rules to reflect the convention and liaising with the commercial sector about what is required to comply.”

“While New Zealand has aligned itself to the MLC convention, NZ labour standards on our vessels are already good. The MLC is aimed at raising standards on vessels where the living and working conditions for seafarers are poor.”

The convention applies to about 890 foreign commercial cargo and cruise ships visiting New Zealand annually. Maritime NZ is expanding its Port State Control functions to include checking that foreign ships visiting New Zealand comply with the applicable provisions.

Meanwhile 22 New Zealand ships – including Cook Strait ferries, coastal tankers and cement vessels – are required to comply if they operate beyond inshore limits. MLC does not apply to fishing vessels.

New Zealand ships that have an MLC certificate can easily demonstrate compliance when operating overseas to foreign authorities party to the convention.

Strait Shipping General Manager of Marine Operations, Clive Glover, said in addition to operating between the North and South Islands, the Straitsman has to travel internationally to Australia for dry-docking requirements.

Clive said MLC is beneficial for all seafarers as it sets a minimum standard for seafarer welfare, everything from the size of their bunks, to conditions of pay, meals, leave and more.

“In New Zealand seafarers enjoy reasonable standards and conditions compared to the conditions some international seafarers have to work under. MLC sets a standard and prompts other countries to meet it.”

Sam Nariman, Marine Manager at Bureau Veritas says New Zealand’s ratification of the MLC is a positive event. “It’s good for the industry and for seafarers,” he says.

New Zealand is among 82 member states that have adopted the ILO convention.

Note: New Zealand’s employment law, along with the Maritime Transport Act, the Health and Safety at Work Act, ACC and other legislation already covers most of the provisions of the MLC for domestic operators.

Source – Maritime New Zealand

fish and ferries 1492025344060

Ferries and fish farming don’t always make good neighbours.

SALMON FARMS AND FERRIES ON COLLISION COURSE?

By ELENA MCPHEE

Putting a salmon farm near a major shipping channel could cause serious accidents, with floating debris threatening boats, Marlborough’s port company contends.

The Ministry for Primary Industries is proposing to relocate six salmon farms in the Marlborough Sounds, and one could be situated at Oyster Bay in Tory Channel, less than 300 metres from the route inter-island ferries take between Wellington and Picton.

Port Marlborough has strongly opposed the Tory Channel farm, and the region’s harbourmaster has raised doubts about the safety of another farm in the Pelorus Sound.

perlorus sounds sites 1492025344060

The third proposed relocation site is located in the middle of the Waitata Reach, the gateway to the Pelorus Sound.

The Tory Channel farm would be “unduly close”, and floating debris from the farm could pose a risk to smaller craft in the channel and cause serious accidents, the submission from Port Marlborough said.

“The National Transportation Route includes the main inter-island shipping channel, through which typically 20 ferry transits occur in any given 24-hour period,” the submission said.

proposed sites in tory channel

The proposed site at Oyster Bay in Tory Channel is marked in black. – Photo John Cowie, Fairfax.

“Tory Channel is a recognised navigational route for a whole variety of craft including smaller vessels, leisure craft from smaller trailer boats to super yachts, fishing trawlers and numerous other vessels.”

Harbourmaster Luke Grogan did not comment on the proposed Oyster Bay farm, but raised doubts about the safety of relocating another New Zealand King Salmon farm to the middle of the Waitata Reach in the Marlborough Sounds, saying the risk of collisions would increase.

luke grogan, marlborough harbourmaster

Marlborough harbourmaster Luke Grogan (above) has concerns about moving a salmon farm into the middle of Waitata Reach.

Placing the salmon farm in the reach meant there would be two small shipping routes, to the north and south of the farm, instead of one wider one. The reach was the only seaward entranceway to the Pelorus Sound, and it also provided a refuge for ships entering or leaving Cook Strait.

“In general, collision risk between vessels increases when a waterway is narrowed and the traffic remains constant,” the submission read.

Establishing a farm in the reach would be a breach of accepted marine farm guidelines.

A list of potential mitigation measures were included in Mr Grogan’s submission, including radar and camera imaging, increased lights, public education, and controlled speed zones. Mr Grogan and a Port Marlborough representative were scheduled to speak at public hearings, along with a KiwiRail representative who was also concerned about the Oyster Bay farm.

Tory Channel resident Tim Healey said in his submission he did not see the point of having a farm at Oyster Bay.

“The money made and jobs created are all beneficial to Picton and Marlborough but to us locals, all we get is another industrial marine farm and possible loss of a good fishing spot and remote environment.”

He also believed the mid-channel site in the Waitata Reach would seriously detract from the beauty of the area, as well as posing a navigational hazard.

The Kenepuru & Central Sounds Residents Association and Friends of Nelson Haven and Tasman Bay said in a joint submission that the ministry was “tipping the playing field” by using a section of the Resource Management Act to bypass the usual resource consent process.

In a 2014 Supreme Court Case between the Environmental Defence Society and NZ King Salmon the conservation group had recourse to the Environment Court first, but that was not the case this time around.

However, a staggering 69 per cent of the written submissions received from the public on the relocation plan, announced in January, backed the move. Other businesses and organisations in Marlborough supported salmon farming, such as the Marlborough Chamber of Commerce, which put in a submission in favour of the farms.

Source – The Marlborough Express.

Photographs by John Cowie

stellar daily missing

STELLAR DAILY MISSING WITH 22 CREW AT RISK

A South Korean cargo vessel is missing after making its last contact in the South Atlantic about 2500km from shore and 22 crew members are unaccounted for.  South Korea’s foreign ministry and news reports said that two Filipino crew members were rescued floating in a life raft, but other lifeboats and rafts found in the area were empty, South Korea’s Yonhap news agency reported.

“A search operation is continuing for the 22 people,” a South Korean foreign ministry official in Seoul said by telephone, adding eight of the missing were South Korean nationals and 14 were Filipinos. South Korea has requested Brazil and Uruguay to help in the search and rescue, the official said asking not to be identified.

The very large ore carrier (VLOC) Stellar Daisy (shown above)  owned and operated by South Korea’s Polaris Shipping based in Busan was sailing from Brazil to China carrying iron ore when it sent a distress signal to the ship operator on Friday, Yonhap said.

A message last received by Polaris from a crew member said the ship was taking in water on the port side and was listing rapidly, Yonhap agency stated.

Source – Reuters

LYTTELTON TIMEBALL TOWER REBUILD STARTS JULY

Offsite work has progressed on returning the Timeball tower and mechanism to Lyttelton’s skyline, with work at the Reserve Terrace site expected to begin in July.timeball with flags

Heritage New Zealand put work on hold last June so significant earthquake repair road works on Sumner Road and Reserve Terrace could be carried out by the Stronger Christchurch Infrastructure Rebuild Team.

“A project manager from The Building Intelligence Group has been procured and a preferred stonemason selected,” says Heritage Destinations General Manager Nick Chin. “We are in the process of selecting a head contractor and we hope to start rebuilding the Timeball tower in July. The tower will be built first to accommodate the Timeball mechanism.  The stonemasonry work will take place in the spring and summer months when the weather is at its best to ensure proper curing.”

The project’s budget remains within the approximately $3 million raised through fundraising.  The plan is to return the Timeball tower, mechanism flagpole and landscaped grounds with interpretation to the site.

“Community interest in the Timeball’s return remains high from discussions we have had following earlier community consultation on the project,” says Nick. “Heritage New Zealand appreciates the community’s patience as we work through the logistics of the Timeball tower’s return.  It is the first major rebuild project we have undertaken so we are taking time to make sure we do it right.”

Following the June 2011 earthquake the Timeball Station was dismantled and as much heritage material was put into storage so it could be later returned to the site.

“The stonemasonry component of the rebuild will be exciting because we’re bringing back what was originally there to keep the physical link to 1876, when the Timeball first dropped, alive.”

Caption: A proposed option of the Timeball tower’s rebuild. (Illustration by www.stantiallstudio.co.nz)

NEW EXECUTIVE DEAN FOR NZ MARITIME SCHOOL

bo samuelsson 4

Bo Samuelsson has taken up his appointment as the new Executive Dean of the Faculty of Maritime and Logistics, based at the New Zealand Maritime School in Auckland.

Mr Samuelsson has had a 40 years career in shipping, logistics and port management. He was previously Container Terminal Manager at Lyttelton Container terminal, and previous to that, was contracted general manager for a port development company in Vanuatu, and was terminal manager for Toll Shipping’s roll-on roll-off service in Tasmania. He has also worked as a shipping consultant and as operations manager for Hamburg Sud NZ Ltd. He holds a master foreign going ship certificate.

Mr Samuelsson has had an impressive maritime and logistics career. He holds a Swedish Master Mariner’s qualification as well as business qualifications. Bo has spent 15 years at sea and more than 30 years involved with the operational management of vessels, terminals, and stevedoring operations around the world.

Mr Samuelsson replaces outgoing Dean Paul Harper, who has served at the NZ Maritime School since arriving as a lecturer in 2013.

NEW EDUCATION RESOURCE FROM RENA GROUNDING

Capture nzms rena education

School students this year can learn from New Zealand’s most significant maritime pollution emergency, the grounding of MV Rena.

“What now for the Rena?” is an article in “Getting the Message”, one of the issues in the Ministry of Education’s Connected 2016 series. Connected promotes the exploration and learning of ideas in science, mathematics, and technology for students in years 4 to 8.

Maritime NZ Director, Keith Manch, said the agency was very pleased to work with the Ministry to help produce the article.

“The Rena grounding was a major maritime event,” Mr Manch said. “Most of the 360 tonnes of oil, plus other pollution, was cleared within months, but the environmental, social, economic, and cultural impacts continued for years and affected Tauranga and its iwi.”

“What now for the Rena?” focuses on these long-term impacts of the grounding and looks at what factors were considered when deciding on the wreck’s future. It links to the article “After the Spill” in Connected 2013.

“As a country, because of the Rena and other emergencies like the Christchurch earthquakes, we have changed how we think about emergencies – how we prepare, respond, and recover,” Mr Manch said. “We do as much as possible to address the effects of the incident and get things back to normal as soon as possible but we have to understand that recovery can be very challenging and can take many years. “Students can learn from this important maritime event in our country’s history.”

Teachers have responded enthusiastically to the article. Their comments include: “I found this article very interesting. When you see what was on board and escaped you get to think beyond the oil to other contaminants.” and “The way this and the previous Rena article have been written, and the depth of ideas that are explored in both, provide great modelling on critical thinking for the students.”

The article is available in print and digital versions. Schools can order copies of the printed issues of Connected 2016 from www.thechair.minedu.govt.nz The digital version, with student and teacher support material, is available to download from the Connected page at http://instructionalseries.tki.org.nz  .

A FOND FAREWELL, WITH SINCERE THANKS TO TIM WILSON

Captain Tim Wilson, Director Strategy, at Manukau Institute of Technology, and a former long term Director of the NZ Maritime School has left the education sector to pursue other projects.

Tim started at MIT in 1990 and has held a number of challenging and high-profile positions. Originally hired as a lecturer, he was Director of the New Zealand Maritime School for 16 years, Director of Service Operations and latterly CEO Enterprise MIT and Director Strategy.

He has also led functions across many parts of the Institute including Finance, ICTS, Facilities Management, International, Student Support, Health and Counselling, Academic Registry, Children’s Education Centre, the Student Village and the Academic Centre.  He chaired the Budget and Investment Committees for many years and has developed and negotiated all of MIT’s Investment Plans with TEC.

MIT CEO Gus Gilmore said that it was testament to Tim’s ability that he had been able to make a positive difference across such a wide range of portfolios within MIT.

EXPENSIVE US DESTROYER BREAKS DOWN IN PANAMA CANAL

The most expensive destroyer ever built for the United States Navy has suffered another embarrassing breakdown, this time in the Panama Canal, leading to the first-of-its class “stealth” ship to be towed to port. US Third Fleet spokesman Commander Ryan Perry said a vice admiral directed the USS Zumwalt to remain at ex-Naval Station Rodman in Panama to address the issues.

The ship was built at Bath Iron Works in Maine and is on its way to San Diego on the US West Coast.

“With the Zumwalt, the whole purpose is to push the limits of technology,” Eric Wertheim, author of the US Naval Institute’s Guide to Combat Fleets of the World, told the Maine-based Portland Press Herald.

The Zumwalt cost more than US$4.4 billion (about $6.2 billion) and was commissioned last month in Maryland. It also suffered a leak in its propulsion system before it was commissioned. The leak required the ship to remain at Naval Station Norfolk in Virginia longer than expected for repairs.

The ship is part of the first new class of warship built at Bath Iron Works in more than 25 years.It is the largest and most technologically advanced destroyer ever built for the US Navy. It features an electric propulsion system, new types of weapons and a sleek, angled shape and hull design that makes the 186m ship appear no larger than a fishing vessel on radar.

One of its signature features is a new gun system that fires rocket-powered shells up to 63 nautical miles. The GPS-guided, rocket-powered ammunition developed for the new 155mm Advanced Gun System currently costs nearly as much as a cruise missile, making them too expensive for the Navy to buy in large quantities for the stealthy destroyer, according to officials.

ZUMWALT DESTROYER

The USS Zumwalt is the US navy’s largest and most technologically advanced destroyer. Its sleek, angled shape makes the 186m ship appear no larger than a fishing vessel on radar. Photo / AP

Although much larger than the Arleigh Burke-class destroyers also built at Bath Iron Works, the USS Zumwalt is able to operate with a smaller crew and is designed to get closer to shore to support land operations.

“The schedule for the ship will remain flexible to enable testing and evaluation in order to ensure the ship’s safe transit to her new home port in San Diego,” Cmdr Perry said in a statement.

USNI News, a publication of the US Naval Institute, reported on its website that the ship was in the canal when it lost propulsion in one of its two drive shafts and crew members noticed water coming into bearings connecting the shaft with its electric motor.USNI News also reported that the Zumwalt suffered minor cosmetic damage.The ship had been scheduled to arrive in San Diego by the end of the year to start the activation of its weapon system, the website reported.

The second Zumwalt-class destroyer, which also cost more than $4.4 billion, was christened in a June ceremony during which Maine Republican Congressman Bruce Poliquin called it an “extraordinary machine of peace and security”. A third ship is expected to cost a bit less than US$3.7 billion. A spokeswoman for Bath Iron Works said the shipyard was not planning to comment on the breakdown and deferred to the US Navy.

Source- Portland Press Herald.

francie

‘IT IS A TRAGEDY AT ITS WORST – A KAIPARA DISASTER!

A fishing trip deaths leave friends, and locals deeply shocked. The Francie ( shown above)  sank last week as it tried to enter Kaipara Harbour after a fishing charter, with the loss of eight lives. The search for the last missing person who was on board a fishing boat which capsized in the Kaipara Harbour, is continuing.

Iripa Iripa was too big for his lifejacket, but managed to swim to shore while clinging on to it. Mr Iripa’s family, who heard about the incident in the news, said he was discharged from hospital on Sunday night.

Flags were at half mast in Helensville after the maritime tragedy.

Mr Iripa, who was one of three survivors, “managed to grab a lifejacket but it wouldn’t fit him so he hung onto it and floated to shore”, said the man’s uncle.

Police on Sunday confirmed the boat’s owner Bill McNatty was among the dead, while all the others on board the Francie were Pacific Islander males aged between 31 and 59. They included four people from Tonga, one from Samoa and one from the Cook Islands. Of the three survivors, one managed to swim to shore while two were winched to safety by helicopter. They were of Samoan and Cook Island descent.

Rodney area commander Inspector Mark Fergus said the fishermen were a group of friends who often went fishing together. The missing person, believed to be a Cook Islander, was believed to be likely deceased, he said. A number of investigations were underway and while there were lifejackets on board it was unknown if they had been used.

Inspector Willi Fanene said an officer had been assigned to each of the victim’s families to support them.

The boat chanced the Kaipara Harbour bar’s mountainous seas two days in a row – the only vessel to notify Coastguard it was doing so. On its fourth crossing, disaster struck when it capsized.

Coastguard spokesman Ray Burge said radio logs show the Francie was the only vessel crossing the treacherous bar on Friday and Saturday. Strong winds and large waves are battering Muriwai Beach as the search for bodies from the Kaipara boat tragedy continues.

At just after 2pm on Saturday, the Francie contacted Coastguard to say it was heading into the harbour across the bar with 11 people on board. The Francie requested a 60-minute watch, meaning the Coastguard would contact them again after 60 minutes to make sure they were safe, Mr Burge said.

The average safety window time boats crossing the bar give is 30 minutes, but sea conditions sometimes mean boats request longer windows, he said. By 3.02pm when the Francie still hadn’t been heard from, the alert was raised. Volunteers rushing out onto the harbour described just how dangerous the seas were to Mr Burge.

Emergency services coordinate search and rescue efforts at a Defence Force establishment on the south head of the Kaipara Harbour, after a charter boat overturned with the loss of at least five lives.

“What I can tell you is that our volunteers reported four metre swells [in the harbour]”.

But over the bar seas were even higher, with waves breaking on top of the swell likely raising seas close to the height of a two storey house.

The Francie, a charter fishing boat, had previously towed another boat to safety, from peril on the Kaipara bar, but on Saturday came to grief herself.

“It’s never easy being part of an incident where you can’t bring people home to their families. Our thoughts are with everyone involved.”

Steve McGregor, president of Kaipara Cruising and Sportsfishing Club said Skipper McNatty had made a mistake in going beyond the bar on such a rough day.

“Bill knew what he was doing, don’t get me wrong but he shouldn’t have gone out past the bar.”​

Bill McNatty attended high school in Southland, where he went to school at James Hargest College in Invercargill. He later graduated from Waikato University with a psychology degree in 1997.

Third cousin of McNatty, Bruce Cavanagh said he had a wide range of interests that included caring for the environment and genealogy. Like many people he had a passion for family history, he said.

Mr Cavanagh said they started communicating when they discovered they shared great great-grandparents. From then the pair communicated online to piece together where their ancestors were from, he said. The distant relatives only met once which was at the James Hargest College reunion in 2008.

McNatty’s daughter, Kathleen-Jane Hotere, was also an aspiring skipper who had hoped to take over the family business.

Sunia Ungo’unga and Alipate Manumu’a, both Tongan, died along with five others when the Francie attempted to cross the bar in the Kaipara Harbour.

Muriwai Beach surf lifesaving patrol captain Brett William Hardie said during a search for survivors wreckage spotted 100m off the surf break showed the Francie had “completely broken up”.

“It was obvious the super structure of the boat had completely broken up. There was nothing bigger than maybe 2 metres long and half a metre wide just floating on the water.”

NEW ZEALAND’S TRAGIC MARITIME HISTORY

* The sinking of the Wahine in the Wellington Harbour in 1968 was New Zealand’s worst modern maritime disaster. Fifty-one people died when the Wellington-Lyttelton ferry capsized. Another person died a few weeks later, while a survivor died in 1990 of complications from the incident.

* In May 2006, six people died after the fishing boat Kotuku capsized off the coast of Southland.

* On Anzac Day 2007, five-year-old Travis Rowles and his eight-year-old sister Erina died when the family runabout sank in Auckland’s Hauraki Gulf.

* In March 2012, eight people drowned after the Easy Rider capsized while sizing from Bluff to the Muttonbird Islands.

* Two months later, So’saia Paasi and his seven-year-old son, Tio, died after their boat overturned off Auckland’s Mangere Bridge.

Source – Stuff

three ships

More than 18,000 passengers waved to each other as the world’s biggest ships met at sea.

WORLD’S LARGEST CRUISE SHIPS MEET TO MAKE VIDEO

By Gene Sloan.

It was an afternoon for the record books! Royal Caribbean’s new Harmony of the Seas, the world’s largest cruise ship, was greeted off the coast of Florida by its two slightly smaller sisters, Oasis of the Seas and Allure of the Seas, in an at-sea stunt that brought together the world’s three largest passenger vessels for the first and perhaps only time.

Ranging from 225,282 to 226,983 tons, the three ships are more than 30 per cent larger than the next largest vessels in cruisedom world and can carry more than 6000 passengers a piece. Each has a crew of more than 2000 people.

The meetup came as Harmony approached its long-term home in Florida, for the first time after crossing the Atlantic from Barcelona. Unveiled in May, the 16-deck-high ship spent an inaugural season sailing out of Barcelona in advance of its US debut. It’ll now start up a permanent schedule of seven-night voyages out of Port Everglades to the Caribbean.

Harmony arrived before dawn at Port Everglades for the first time, and when it sailed, the vessel was escorted out to sea by a flotilla of JetBoard and Jetpack performers. A week of welcoming events for the vessel also included its official christening, which took place November 10.

Harmony also is home to a multi-deck water slide area, something Royal Caribbean has just begun adding to ships this year. It’s also the first Oasis class ship with a bionic bar where the drinks are served by robot bartenders – a concept that first debuted in 2014 on Royal Caribbean’s Quantum of the Seas.

In addition, Harmony has larger cabins than Oasis and Allure in some categories, and windowless “inside” cabins are being outfitted with Royal Caribbean’s exclusive ‘virtual balconies’, which offer a real-time view of the outdoors. It’s a concept that first debuted in 2014 on the line’s Navigator of the Seas.

Wider than Oasis and Allure by about 2.5 feet and longer too, by one foot,  Harmony holds nearly 100 more passengers than its sisters at double occupancy. Its total capacity is 6,780 people, not including crew.

Source – USA Today

 

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Action on the quayside as  people smuggler ‘delivers his cargo’ – Photo courtesy Getty Images.

NOTORIOUS PEOPLE SMUGGLER CAPTAIN JAILED

A notorious people smuggler has been arrested for a third time by Indonesian police. Captain Bram, whose real name is Abraham Louhenapessy, was found in West Jakarta and taken into custody for attempting to smuggle a boat load of people to New Zealand in May 2015, according to a report by The Daily Telegraph. He is believed to have organised smuggled as many as 1500 people into Australia as far back as 1999.

‘Abraham is known to be an old player in human trafficking,’ a police official said.

Immigration Minister Peter Dutton praised the Indonesian National Police for stopping Captain Bram from risking the lives of vulnerable people.

‘The arrest of Captain Bram demonstrates the success of offshore deterrence efforts, but we need to remain vigilant because people smugglers will do almost anything to convince vulnerable people to part with their money and get onto a leaky boat,’ Mr Dutton said. ‘This is why we have reinforced our on water capabilities to ensure that illegal people smuggling boats will not make it to Australia,’ he added.

Abraham Louhenapessy was jailed for 20 months over an attempt to smuggle 83 Sri Lankans to Australia in 2007, according to a report by the Herald Sun.

Another attempt in 2009, saw him arrested and fined for attempting to smuggle 250 Sri Lankans, including 31 children on small boats en route to Christmas Island.

Source – Daily Mail.

NOISE FROM PILOT BOAT CAUSES CONCERNS

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The Lyttelton Port Company will put a ‘noise attenuation silencer’ on their newest pilot launch, the Awaroa, after complaints from residents about the noise.

It was hailed as the “Rolls-Royce” of pilot launches, but the noise from Lyttelton Port Company’s new boat is annoying some harbour dwellers. The LPC will fit a silencer to the Awaroa‘s exhaust after fielding complaints since it came into use in February. The Awaroa replaced the Canterbury, which had been in use at Lyttelton Port since 1992.

LPC chief executive Peter Davie said the company would remedy a “change in frequency” from the new boat. Most “feedback” came from Diamond Harbour residents, he said. “We are making a small change to the exhaust system to change the sound characteristics in response.”

The 16 metre-long Awaroa replaced the 12-metre Canterbury, which was less capable of handling tougher sea conditions when transferring pilots to and from ships.

An LPC statement earlier this year said it had “all the comfort, space and low sound levels you’d expect of a new state of the art pilot launch”.

Source  – Stuff

SHORTAGE OF SEAFARERS REMAINS

By Iain MacIntyre

Ships’ officer, marine engineer class 3 and ship’s master positions need to remain on the New Zealand immigration long term skills shortlist, according to the New Zealand Shipping Federation.

Executive director Annabel Young prepared a submission to a review of employment shortages undertaken by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment, and stated that the Safety of Life at Sea Convention vessels cannot sail unless these mandatory positons are filled.

“For that reason any vacancy becomes a matter of urgency,” she said. “If ships do not sail, then that part of the supply infrastructure of New Zealand grinds to a halt, whether that be fuel, cement, general cargo or the link between the North and South Islands.

Ms Young noted that the experience gained on one vessel may not be readily transferred to another, given the highly specific requirements of different types of ship and the cargo they carried.

“Employing the best qualified person is a matter of safety as well as meeting the requirements of the regulatory authority and other international requirements. Problems in finding the right person are exacerbated by the small size of the New Zealand employment market in respect of the requirements of each role. For example, not all qualified masters are the same and they are notable to be randomly interchanged.

“If there is a local seafarer who can fill the role, of course that is the preferred solution. But where there is no appropriate local seafarer, it is important that vacancies can be quickly filled. For that reason the Federation recommends that he three categories listed remain on the skills shortages list.”

Source: NZ Shipping Gazette

Transocean winner

DRILLING RIG REFLOATED OFF SCOTTISH COAST

The drilling rig that ran aground in bad weather on the Isle of Lewis a little over two weeks ago has been successfully refloated and stablised and is now a safe harbour, the UK Maritime and Coastguard Agency has confirmed.

The rig, the Transocean Winner (shown above) was towed by support vessels at about 1-1.5 knots per hour to Broad Bay, located on the island’s east coast, some 40 miles away. Prior to the decision to proceed, the coastguard conducted an overflight of Dalmore Bay to examine the water for any sign of discharge, sheen or pollution from the rig. There was no pollution reported in the area.

A slight sheen was detected following the path of the rig, which the coastguard stated was associated with the ongoing pressurisation of tanks to maintain the rig’s stability. Support boats from marine environmental contractor Briggs Marine accompanied the tow and broke up the light sheen. Additional counter pollution equipment was on board the vessels but was not required.

The Temporary Exclusion Zone remains in place at Dalmore Bay until the seabed has been thoroughly checked for any debris or environmental impact. A Temporary Exclusion Zone of 1,000 metres has also been established in Broad Bay by the coastguard.

“We are taking advantage of the favourable weather conditions following this big step forward, and we will continue to closely monitor the rig ,” commented Hugh Shaw, the Secretary of State’s Representative (SOSREP) for Maritime Salvage & Intervention. “By all accounts the rig appears to be in a stable condition, and once everything is declared safe, I will be looking at releasing the exclusion zone in Dalmore Bay.”

The refloating of the vessel came after nearly two weeks of preparing the rig for the operation. The Transocean Winner ran aground August 8 after breaking free from a tow in heavy weather. The rig was carrying some 280 metric tons of diesel fuel when the incident occurred, but there has been no reports of major pollution.

The 30-year-old semi-submersible was en route from Norway to Malta when the incident occurred. It was reportedly destined for Turkey where it was understood to be scrapped. The rig was capable of drilling in water depths of 1500 feet (457 metres), and had just wrapped up an 11 month contract with Marathon Oil Corp. The North Sea, where the rig was last working, is one of Transocean’s largest markets, with seven active vessels in the region, according to their  July status report.

Source: Bloomberg and gcaption website.

PIRACY INCREASING IN THE REGION!

Piracy should still be a major concern for Australasian ship owners and operators, according to the fourth annual Allianz Global Corporate and Specialty (AGCS) Safety and Shipping Review for 2016. The International Maritime Organisation (IMO) reported that while on the decline elsewhere in the world, pirate attacks in South East Asia, and the Pacific, through which most of Australia and New Zealand international trade is shipped, is on the increase.

SE Asia now accounts for around 60% of all incidents (246 piracy attacks) with Vietnam as the new hotspot. The report also notes that cyber risks in maritime and shipping are evolving rapidly and require industry attention. International shipping transports approximately 80% of global trade by volume and over 70% of global trade by value. The safety of vessels is critical to the global economy.

The maritime industry saw the number of total losses remain stable during 2015, declining slightly to 85; the lowest total for a decade and the second year in a row annual losses fell below 100. Losses declined 3% compared with 2014 (88). The 2015 accident year represents a significant improvement on the 10-year loss average (123). Large shipping losses have declined by 45% over the past decade, driven by an increasingly robust safety environment and self regulation. However, regional disparities remain.

More than a quarter of all losses in 2015 (22) occurred in the South China, Indochina, Indonesia and Philippines maritime region, which has been the top loss hotspot for the past decade. Losses are up year-on-year and are double those of the next highest loss region, East Mediterranean and Black Sea (11).

Cargo (36) and fishing (16) vessels accounted for over 60% of ships lost with cargo losses increasing for the first time in three years. Foundered (sunk/submerged) is the most common cause of loss, often driven by bad weather, accounting for almost 75% (63), up 25% year-on-year.

In total, there were 2,687 reported shipping casualties (incidents) during 2015, down 4% year-on-year. The East Mediterranean and Black Sea region (484) remains the global hotspot. Together, with the British Isles, N.Sea, Eng. Channel, Bay of Biscay, it accounts for a third of all incidents over the past decade. Thursday is the most frequent day for shipping incidents with Saturday the safest.

Economic pressures impact: While the long-term downward trend in shipping losses is encouraging, the continuing weak global economy, depressed commodity prices and an excess of ships are pressurizing costs and raising safety concerns. Machinery damage (36%) is already the most common cause of shipping incidents and preventative measures is often one of the first shipboard expenses to suffer. AGCS has observed an increase in frequency losses over the past 12 months, which, for some classes, can likely be attributed to some extent to the economic environment.

As well as impacting investment in vessel maintenance and repair, crewing conditions and training, cost pressures can also impair passenger ship safety, salvage and rescue and safe cargo carrying.

It’s critical that economic pressures do not allow a “put it off until later” safety mentality to develop. Some ship owners are already stretching maintenance to the longest possible intervals, while others are considering laying-up vessels or are already doing so. Vessels which are laid-up for a period of time can return to a market that has moved on technologically. There is a need for standardized layup procedures. Without these, the reactivation of such vessels may result in a “painful” exercise for the industry.

Seafarer shortage, fatigue and training issues: There has been an increase in fatigue-related insurance claims over the past decade. With crew numbers often at their lowest possible level, and with the industry anticipating a future staffing shortage, expectations are for longer shift patterns, which could exacerbate the issue. Meanwhile, training remains below par in some areas, such as with electronic navigational aids, which should not be seen as a panacea but as a tool.

Passenger ship safety: Significant concerns remain, particularly around non-international voyages. Some Asian routes are many years behind recognized international standards, as evidenced by a number of recent ferry losses in South East Asian waters. Frequent sailings and profit pressures mean scheduling necessary maintenance can prove challenging.

“Mega ship” salvage challenges: The appetite for ever-larger container ships has seen cargo-carrying capacity of the largest vessels increase by over 70% over the past decade, to carry 19,000+ containers today. Two “mega ships” were grounded in February 2016, raising safety concerns about what could happen should a more serious incident occur. The industry may need to prepare for a $1bn+ loss in future. There are concerns that commercial pressures in the salvage business have reduced easy access to the salvors required for recovery work on this scale.

Superstorm ship sinkings: Meteorological predictions anticipate more extreme weather conditions, bringing additional safety risks for shipping and potential disruption to supply chains. Hurricanes and bad weather were contributing factors in at least three of the five largest vessels lost during 2015 including El Faro, the worst US commercial maritime disaster in decades. It is also a major factor in South China, Indochina, Indonesia and Philippines being the global loss hotspot. Weather routing will continue to be a critical component to the safe navigation of vessels.

Lower emissions safety threat: The shipping industry has been proactively working to reduce emissions, but there have been unexpected safety implications connected with the use of ultra-low sulfur fuel. Engine problems and power issues have been reported and such incidents could increase as regulations on sulfur content in fuel tighten further. Generally, AGCS has seen an increase in machinery claims in relation to fuel.

Arctic casualties increase: There were 71 reported shipping incidents in Arctic Circle waters during 2015, up 29% year-on-year and the highest in a decade. In 2006 there were just 8 incidents. Machinery damage/failure (46) was the cause of 65% of incidents, driven by the harsh environment. The mandatory Polar Code, expected to enter into force in 2017, will help ensure more responsible shipping in such high-risk waters but safety questions remain.

The cyber threat grows: The maritime industry’s reliance on interconnected systems poses risks as well as bringing benefits. Threats can result from improper integration and interaction of cyber systems/updates or attacks from external sources and are not always detected. More needs to be done to educate companies. While the likelihood of a cyber event that cuts off a significant portion of trade remains low at present, cyber exposure is growing. Technological advances such as “The Internet of Things”, allied with increasing reliance on e-navigation, means insurers may have less than five years to prepare for a cyber-attack or incident materializing into a hull and machinery loss”.

Piracy evolves as potential cyber risk: There was an increase in the number of piracy attacks (246) during 2015. Progress continues in Africa with incidents down in Nigeria and Somalia, although the risk remains high.

Attacks in South East Asia continue to increase, with the region accounting for 60% of global incidents and Vietnam a new hotspot. There are also indications pirates may be abusing holes in cyber security to target specific cargoes. There have already been a number of notable marine-related cyber incidents. The industry needs more robust cyber technology in order to monitor the movement of stolen cargoes.

Other rising concerns include: Supply chain and accumulation risk in the wake of the Tianjin explosion in China in 2015; Cargo risk, particularly around accurate weighing of containers and shifting cargo (liquefaction) – technological support is needed to test the moisture content of cargoes which can liquefy; Car carrier stability – in the aftermath of the ‘Höegh Osaka’ grounding incident; Geopolitical instability – in addition to the physical risks, there are operational risks due to unexpected port closures and vessel delays; The return of Iran to the global shipping stage after easing of sanctions raises safety questions about vessel and port standards in Iranian waters.

Footnote: This review focuses on key developments in maritime safety and analyses shipping losses (of over 100 gross tons) during the 12 months prior to December 31, 2015. It follows the Safety and Shipping Review 2015 by Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty (AGCS) available at www.agcs.allianz.com

US MILITARY CHRISTENS SUBMARINE-HUNTING DRONE SHIP

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The Sea Hunter, the pilotless ship designed to hunt submarines. Photo-DARPA

The US military has christened an experimental self-piloting ship designed to hunt for enemy submarines, a major advance in robotic warfare at the core of America’s strategy to counter Chinese and Russian naval investments.

The 132-foot-long (40-metre-long) unarmed prototype, dubbed Sea Hunter, is the naval equivalent of Google’s self-driving car, designed to cruise on the ocean’s surface for two or three months at a time – without a crew or anyone controlling it remotely. That kind of endurance and autonomy could make it a highly efficient submarine stalker at a fraction of the cost of the Navy’s manned vessels.

“This is an inflection point,” Deputy US Defence Secretary Robert Work said in an interview, adding he hoped such ships might find a place in the western Pacific in as few as five years. “This is the first time we’ve ever had a totally robotic, trans-oceanic-capable ship.”

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The 132-foot-long (40-metre-long) unarmed prototype is the naval equivalent of Google’s self-driving car. DARPA

For Pentagon planners such as Mr Work, the Sea Hunter fits into a strategy to incorporate unmanned drones – with increasing autonomy – into the conventional military in the air, on land and at sea. It also comes as China’s naval investments, including in its expanding submarine fleet, stoke concern in Washington about the vulnerability of the aircraft carrier battle groups and submarines that remain critical to America’s military superiority in the western Pacific.

“We’re not working on anti-submarine (technology) just because we think it’s cool. We’re working on it because we’re deeply concerned about the advancements that China and Russia are making in this space,” said author Peter Singer, an expert on robotic warfare at the New America Foundation think tank.

Mr Work said he hoped the ship, once it is proven safe, could head to the US Navy’s Japan-based 7th Fleet to continue testing. His goal is to have ships like the Sea Hunter operating on a range of missions, possibly even including counter-mine warfare operations.

“I would like to see unmanned flotillas operating in the western Pacific and the Persian Gulf within five years,” he said.

The ship’s projected US$20 million price tag and its $15,000 to $20,000 daily operating cost make it relatively inexpensive for the US military.

“You now have an asset at a fraction of the cost of a manned platform,” said Rear Admiral Robert Girrier, the Navy’s director of unmanned warfare systems.

Developed by the Pentagon’s Defence Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), the ship is about to undergo two years of testing, including to verify that it can safely follow international norms for operating at sea. First and foremost is ensuring that it can use radar and cameras to avoid other vessels. Powered by two diesel engines, the ship can reach speeds of 27 knots.

The advent of increasingly autonomous ships and aircraft is stoking concern among some experts and activists about armed robotic systems that could identify people as threats and kill them. Mr Work stressed that even if the United States someday decides to arm robotic naval systems such as Sea Hunter, any decision to use offensive lethal force would be made by humans.

Source – Reuters

DEPTH RESTRICTIONS ON PANAMA CANAL

The Panama Canal is to impose new depth restrictions on ships due to drought that has left water levels falling in lakes that form part of the waterway between the Atlantic and Pacific oceans.

Ships seeking to cross the waterway must comply with a maximum draught of 39 feet (11.89m) beginning on 18 April, authorities have said. The “temporary and preventive measures” are connected to local climate impacts of El Niño, the seasonal weather phenomenon that has caused a drought in the canal’s watershed, and will be implemented in six-inch (15cm) depth increments to be announced at least four weeks in advance.

Meanwhile, the planned £23.3bn inter-ocean canal in Nicaragua has been postponed. The world’s biggest canal project – a $50bn interoceanic canal through Nicaragua – has been delayed following an environmental report and a collapse in the fortunes of the Chinese businessman behind the company that planned to build it.

The Hong Kong Nicaragua Development (HKND) Group has stated it would be another year before the start of major works on the proposed rival to the Panama canal. The company said the “design of the canal is being fine tuned”, in accordance with recommendations contained in an environmental impact assessment.

Preliminary operations on ports and access roads started 11 months ago. Since then the slow pace of work on the canal has been attributed to the wait for the environmental report. The report was approved earlier this month, but instead of ramping up work the company said in a statement: “The construction of locks and the big excavations will start toward the end of 2016.”

The mega-project – which would be the world’s biggest earth-moving operation – has proved controversial since it was agreed by Nicaraguan president Daniel Ortega and Wang Jing, the Chinese telecoms mogul who subsequently registered HKND.

MARITIME NZ JURISDICTION EXTENDS FROM MARCH 2017

Maritime New Zealand will have jurisdiction to inspect and verify that crew on vessels calling at this country’s ports are being treated fairly and within internationally accepted standards as from March 9 next year.

The newly ratified International Labour Organisation’s Maritime Labour Convention is expected to apply to about 890 foreign commercial cargo and cruise ships as well as about 30 NZ vessels of 200gt plus operating outside the country’s inshore limits.

Matters of focus of the convention, which does not apply to fishing vessels, include crew medical care, health and safety protection, accommodation, food and water, repatriation and employment conditions.

Associate Minister of Transport Craig Foss said that the Government had worked together with New Zealand ship owners and seafarers throughout the ratification process, with support from Business NZ and NZCTU, to ensure current industry practice reflects the convention’s minimum standards.

Mr Foss said ratifying the convention would also protect the reputation of New Zealand exports.

“This is important given more than 99 per cent of New Zealand’s export goods by volume are transported on foreign ships,” he said. “New Zealand law applying to New Zealand registered ships is already largely consistent with the convention. Only minor or technical changes are required. They are not expected to have any material impact or cost,” Mr Foss said.

75th ANNIVERSARY OF SHIP SINKING

The 75th anniversary of the sinking of the navy minesweeper HMS Puriri about 13km off Bream Head in 1941 will be marked on 14 May this year. The sinking was the only naval loss in New Zealandgravestone memorial waters during the Second World War – and is commemorated by a memorial to the HMS Puriri at Ocean Beach near the Whangarei Heads, shown at right.

“The memorial faces out to sea where the Puriri was sunk after hitting a mine while carrying out minesweeping operations with another ship, HMS Gale,” said Heritage New Zealand’s Northland Manager, Bill Edwards.

“The explosion must have been huge as the ship sank so quickly and no lifeboats were able to be launched. Five sailors were drowned as a result, including the ship’s commanding officer, two stewards, a stoker and an able seaman – all of whom were either former merchant seamen serving as naval reservists or under temporary naval articles.”

The 26 survivors were rescued out of the water by the Gale.

Heritage New Zealand completed an inventory project recording information on war memorials in the Northern Region area last year, including memorials from the Second World War.

BILLIONAIRE’S BOAT, WITH CHOPPER, IN WELLINGTON

billionaires yacht in wellington

The US-built superyacht Evviva – replete with its own helicopter – cruised in to Wellington harbour on Friday with mystery passengers aboard. Pix: Maarten Holl/ Fairfax NZ.

The US-built superyacht Evviva – replete with its own helicopter – cruised in to Wellington harbour last month with mystery passengers aboard.

The $32.8 million,  50-metre motor yacht is owned by Bayliner Marine Corporation founder John Orin Edson, according to various superyacht websites. US business magazine Forbes estimates Mr Edson’s worth at $1.9 billion. As a schoolboy, he is said to have worked a paper delivery round and earned enough to build his first boat at age 13.

Superyachts.com described the Evviva as “a vessel as prized for the artistry of its contours as the substance of its construction”.

Wellington harbourmaster Mike Pryce said he had no idea who was on board.

“It could be someone rich or famous but we don’t know who. They’re usually very secretive – they never tell you,” Mr Pryce said.

Luxury yacht magazine Boat International describes the well-appointed vessel’s main saloon as “warm and elegant with two large sofas to port and starboard and the requisite 50 inch wide screen plasma television that rises out of the forward cabinet.”

The lounge on the upper level of the tri-deck yacht is said to offer “a more informal atmosphere, with wonderful views to port, starboard and aft.”

The Evviva was spotted in the Marlborough Sounds and later berthed in Nelson. It is understood the yacht will be in New Zealand waters for up to three months before sailing to the Pacific Islands.

MARITIME REPORTS SHOW RECENT “INCIDENTS”

Two people in a dinghy had to leap for their lives before a cargo ship ploughed into them, during a 10-month period when New Zealand had more than one maritime mishap a day.

Other incidents included the Waiheke Island ferry that was lifted and dropped by a freak wave, injuring two midwives; and a Northland fishing charter, carrying passengers, that lost control after coming within two boat-lengths of a surfer.

Maritime NZ records show it was alerted to a marine accident, incident, or mishap 365 times in the 10 months to the end of January. The busiest month was in January, when there were 48 different incidents. Maritime NZ started proactively publishing incidents in April last year.

Many of the incidents, including the pair in the dinghy, had no serious consequences, but 15 of them resulted in “serious harm”, Maritime NZ adviser Andrew de Montalk​ said.

The only death during the period was of a skipper of a tourist boat who had a heart attack in Waikato in May last year. Two bodies were found in the wreckage of a vessel in Southland last month. Maritime NZ is yet to publish the February list.

The dinghy incident happened in December, off Auckland, when the crew aboard a cargo ship more than 45 metres long failed to spot the small boat directly in front of them.

The pair in the dinghy were forced to abandon ship “due to the imminent collision”, the report said. They were picked up, given dry clothes, and returned to their dinghy, which was only slightly damaged.

In November, the skipper of the Northland fishing charter boat rode a wave into a channel, blasting his horn to warn nearby surfers. But as the boat entered the channel, a surfer appeared “directly ahead and within two boat lengths”.

The skipper pulled back on the throttle, causing the charter boat to “spin off towards the rocks” before the skipper regained control.

Further back in Maritime NZ’s files is the case of a Cook Strait ferry, on which a passenger woke up in 2014 to find an air pistol beside him. “While playing with it, he shot himself through the hand”, the files say.

In the case of the Waiheke ferry, Maritime NZ is prosecuting Explore Group NZ, as well as the master of the ferry. Both are due to appear in Auckland District Court in April, charged under the Health and Safety Act.

The two injured midwives, who were at the front of the boat, slipped on the drenched deck. One suffered a suspected broken leg and another damaged her knee, Stuff reported at the time.

If convicted, individuals from Explore Group could face up to two years’ jail or a $500,000 fine, while the master could be fined up to $250,000.

A Maritime NZ spokesman said that, in an ideal world, there would be no incidents to report.

“[But] that does not reflect reality, where people make mistakes and equipment fails. It is important that Maritime NZ knows about such occurrences, so that opportunities for improved safety performance can be identified.”

It NZ encouraged all operators to notify any incident, accident or mishap, no matter how minor.

“Minor incidents may have similar causes to serious incidents, and there is potential to improve safety performance from reporting and understanding of these events.”

According to Water Safety NZ figures, 20 people have already died from drowning this year, and 36 people died during summer, a slight drop on the previous two summers.

Senior Sergeant Dave Houston, of the Wellington police maritime unit, said the capital’s summer had been exceptional, sending many boaties out on the water, but the lack of wind meant that when boats broke down they were less likely to get into serious trouble.

“There’s a lot of boats out there, so a lot of boats to see people getting into trouble.”

SOURCE – Stuff

wikicommons pc of qE2

QE2 IN DISREPAIR AT DUBAI

Calls to save the historic Queen Elizabeth 2 cruise ship have been intensifying amid revelations that the stunning and historic ocean liner is currently residing in a state of disrepair in Dubai.

The QE2 was operated by Cunard from 1969 to 2008 as a transatlantic liner and cruise ship and was one of the standard bearers of the emerging cruise ship industry at the time. The served as the flagship of Cunard until she was eventually succeeded by the RMS Queen Mary 2.

When the ship was retired after 40 years of service it was sold to UAE Government conglomerate Dubai World for £64 million in 2008, who had originally intended to convert the historic, iconic cruise ship into a luxury hotel. But due to the economic downturn in 2013 plans to make this stalled dramatically and the QE2 remained languished in Port Rashid, shown above.

As the engine was turned off in 2013 the ship has suffered under pressure from the country’s hot, humid conditions leading to significant mould outbreaks. Concerned campaigners feel that if this sort of thing continues without any restorative work being done, the future of this iconic cruise ship could unfortunately the scrapheap, which would be a tragedy for such a beautiful iconic ship.

“Its scrap value is decreasing, and weighted against the cost of decontaminating the ship – as it’s got asbestos – it could probably be bought for about £3million,” said Rob Lightbody, a member of online campaign group ‘The QE2 Story’ told ‘The Telegraph’. The options now are to scrap it – but clearing it out would cost millions and millions – or just leave it somewhere.

“It’s just sitting in Dubai. Nothing has happened to it in the last two and a half years. There’s no power. There’s no air. She’s filthy.” And Mr Lightbody is not the only person concerned with the fate of the historic ship.

Louis De Sousa worked on the QE2 between 1990 and 1999 and told ‘The Telegraph’ the situation regarding the ship was confusing and disheartening.”

“Her future most likely will be the scrapyard. Of course it is sad. But I truly don’t believe in hotel ships. If you are going to save a ship then have her as such. Dubai just wanted to rip her apart and turn her to into something like Las Vegas.”

Source -Over Sixty

RECOVERY OF HISTORIC KESTREL TO BEGIN WHEN?

The owners of the historic ferry Kestrel say they’re now looking for a place to put its remains as their attention turns raising the sunken vessel. The 111-year-old ferry suddenly sank at its Wynyard Wharf berth in Auckland earlier this month.

kestrel, pix by peter meacham.

The ship’s owners, the Kestrel Restoration Society, had been planning to restore the vessel to working order. Society chairman Mike Alston said they would be spending the next few days trying to find out what could be done with the wreckage.

“We need to know whether the vessel could be raised from the seabed and where she could be moved to,” he said. “It’s highly unlikely it’s going to be salvageable.”

He said the ship, which had been pulled up for repairs a few years ago, was insured for recovery of the wreckage, but not to be restored to its original condition.

The harbourmaster is still investigating the cause of the sinking.

The Kestrel was the last of about 30 double-ended Waitemata Harbour ferries still afloat and had spent more than a century transporting passengers, according to the Preservation Society.

“In our view the Kestrel is Auckland’s most significant maritime icon,” it said.

The Kestrel was built in 1905 and is hailed by many as one of Auckland’s most significant maritime icons. The vessel was built by Charles Bailey Jr at the site of the Tepid Baths, Auckland, and was launched on 14 December 1905.

According to the Kestrel Preservation website, “She was the ultimate Edwardian verandah gliding across the jewel of our harbour.”

Source – NZN

Photo by Peter Meecham, Fairfax News

HELP THE TIMEBALL RETURN AT LYTTELTON

Timing can be everything in life, and now is the timetimeball restoration for the wider community to contribute to the history of the Timeball in Lyttelton that will culminate in its return.

This month signals the final movement in Heritage New Zealand’s fundraising campaign to reach the $3.4 million target required to rebuild and reinstall the Timeball tower, mechanism and flagpole and landscape the grounds.

“In terms of fundraising we’re almost there, with about 90% of the target reached,” said Fundraising Manager, Brendon Veale. “The final stage is an opportunity for the local community, the people of Christchurch and Canterbury and even wider to give their support with a donation.  It really is the perfect way to lend a helping hand and be part of the new chapter in the Timeball’s history.”

Significant contributions from founding donor Landmark Inc, the Lottery Grants Board, Holcim New Zealand Limited and the Stout Trust has helped the planning and shaping of the project, with July 1 this year the planned start date for work to begin.

The planned rebuild has been a lengthy process following the Timeball Station being deconstructed after the June 2011 earthquake severely damaged it.

In the coming weeks a public appeal will be launched asking for donations to complete the fundraising target so work can begin.  The Timeball Station was built in 1876, one of a network of maritime timekeeping sentinels around the world.  The Timeball would drop at the same time each day to ensure accurate navigation.

“With the tower’s return, the Timeball will once again be able to drop,” said Brendon.

Caption above: Timeball Property Manager, Jan Titus, with the Timeball in safe storage.  Credit: Heritage New Zealand

DRAFT HARBOUR MARINE SAFETY CODE CONSULTATION

Port Operators, Councils, and Maritime NZ are running consultation of their draft Port and Harbour Marine Safety Code and the associated implementation plan.

The New Zealand Port and Harbour Marine Safety Code is a voluntary code of practice that is intended to assist port operators and councils to manage the safety of marine activities in their ports and harbours. The Code describes the standards of practice that should be achieved and promotes a systems approach to safety management, supported by risk assessment, to foster continuous improvement in safety performance. It also promotes a high level of collaboration between the three parties involved: commercial port operators, councils, and Maritime NZ. The Code supports the legislated roles of all three parties.

The accompanying implementation plan is designed to support the Code operationally so that momentum is maintained and marine safety performance in the country’s ports and harbours improves consistently.

The deadline for feedback is Friday, 26 February 2016. Please provide feedback by email to deb.player@maritimenz.govt.nz.

To view the documents go to..

Link:  Draft New Zealand Port and Harbour Marine Safety Code 2015 – Invitation to comment [PDF: 1.46Mb, 56 pages]

Link: Implementation plan for Draft New Zealand Port and Harbour Marine Safety Code 2015 [PDF: 204kB, 7 pages]

INDUSTRY COALITION ON NEW CONTAINER WEIGHING REGs

The World Shipping Council (WSC), the TT Club, the International Cargo Handling Coordination Association (ICHCA), and the Global Shippers’ Forum (GSF) jointly released information arising from the new container weighing regulations due to take effect globally on 1 July 2016. The amendments to the SOLAS (Safety of Life at Sea) Convention require packed shipping containers to have a verified gross mass (VGM) before they can be loaded on a ship for export.

The amendments were adopted by the IMO (International Maritime Organization) to enhance maritime safety and reduce the dangers to containerships, their crews, and all those involved in container transport throughout the supply chain. The FAQs have been developed by the industry coalition in response to numerous questions from shippers, carriers, forwarders, and terminal operators about the steps they must take to ensure successful implementation of the new regulations.

This initial FAQs document seeks to clarify how the SOLAS container weight verification requirements will function in various situations. It identifies commercial and operational arrangements that will have to be addressed, and it flags issues that must be dealt with by national governments.  The FAQs are based on actual questions from affected stakeholders, and they will be expanded as new issues emerge.  Stakeholders are invited to approach any of the collaborating organizations with additional questions that may come up. Contact details of ‘subject-matter experts’ from each of the organizations can be found at the end of the FAQs document.

Container safety is a shared responsibility, and all parties have an interest in improving the safety of ships, the safety of cargo and the reduction of the risks to the lives of ships’ crews and others throughout the containerized supply chain.

The FAQs document can be accessed here:

http://www.globalshippersforum.com/export/sites/gsf/.content/.galleries/downloads/SOLAS_VGM_x_Industry_FAQs_Dec_2015_A4_WEB.pdf

ABOUT MEMBERS OF THE INDUSTRY COALITION:

The World Shipping Council (WSC) represents the global liner industry on regulatory, environmental, safety and security policy issues. The WSC has observer status at the IMO and was actively involved in the development of the SOLAS container gross mass verification requirements. More information is available at: www.worldshipping.org.

The TT Club is the international transport and logistics industry’s leading provider of insurance and related risk management services. The TT Club participated throughout the IMO consultation process leading to the amendment of SOLAS and the related implementation guidelines. More information is available at: www.ttclub.com.

The International Cargo Handling Coordination Association (ICHCA) is an independent, not-for-profit organization dedicated to improving the safety, security, sustainability, productivity and efficiency of cargo handling and goods movement by all modes and through all phases of national and international supply chains. ICHCA actively participated in the debates leading to these SOLAS amendments. More information is available at: www.ichca.com

The Global Shippers’ Forum (GSF) is the world’s leading global trade association representing shippers’ engaged in international trade moving goods by all modes of transport. GSF was actively involved in the debates at the IMO leading to these SOLAS amendments. More information is available at: www.globalshippersforum.com

sailing ship

 ‘AMBASSADOR SHIP’ HAS EASY PASSAGE DESPITE FOG

By MATT STEWART

PHOTO By MAARTEN HOLL

The captain of the tall ship sailing into a fog-bound Wellington Harbour said the capital’s misty weather reminded him of being in Norway.

Captain Carlos Zumarraga steered the 78.4 metre-long ship, the Guayas, to berth at Queen’s Wharf after seven months at sea on a training cruise, as the crew looked to the final leg across the South Pacific to Chile on the ship’s maiden round-the-world voyage.

“It was foggy, but we made it in without problems,” Capt Zumarraga said.

The Guayas‘ top deck was open to the public for free tours before the vessel departed again. It has recently visited Perth and Sydney, and is on its second visit to Wellington, after a stop in the capital following a visit to Australia for that country’s bicentennial celebrations in 1988.

Known as Ecuador’s “ambassador ship”, the Guayas‘ brief is to bolster relations between Ecuador, and has visited countries while promoting Ecuadorian tourism, but Capt Zumarraga said its “principal goal” was the training and academic development of Ecuadorian Navy personnel.

Built in Bilbao, Spain in 1976, it sails with a crew of 154 sailors and trainees. The round-the-world voyage is the longest tour the ship has undertaken and is its first circumnavigation.

By the time the ten-month, 35,000 nautical mile tour is over, the Guayas will have docked in 23 ports in 22 countries, and will have traversed four oceans, while 48 midshipmen will have completed their navigation course to become officers of the Ecuadorian Navy.

After departing the capital, Guayas will continue on to the ports of Valparaiso, Chile, and Callao, Peru, before returning home to Ecuador’s biggest city and main port, Guayaquil, on March 1.

The steel-hulled barque was named in honour of the Guayaquil naval tradition and carries the name of Chief Guayas, the Guayas River and the original Buque Guayas, which was the first steam ship to be constructed in South America.

General Characteristics:

Displacement: 1250 tonnes; Length: 78.40 metres; Beam: 10.16 metres; Mast Height: 38 metres; Draft: 4.60 metres; Maximum sail speed: 11 knots; Lodging capacity: 182 crew members; Sails: 1611.29 m²

 – Stuff

Azmarama dockside

CRUISE SHIPS SAILS TOO CLOSE TO ROCKS IN MARLBOROUGH

By OLIVER LEWIS

A cruise ship has been reported to Maritime New Zealand for sailing too close to rocks in the Marlborough Sounds. A passenger on board the Azamara Quest said the boat came within 30 metres of rocks as it entered Tory Channel on last week. The 180-metre long cruise liner was carrying 652 passengers and 394 crew members.

The incident happened about 9.20am. The passenger said he could clearly see rocks from the ship.

Maritime New Zealand confirmed it was making enquiries about a cruise liner entering Tory Channel. The Azamara Quest was owned by Azamara Club Cruises, a subsidiary of Royal Caribbean Cruises.

A spokeswoman said it was the Azamara Quest’s maiden arrival into Picton and the company was co-operating with the New Zealand Maritime Safety Authority

“The safety and security of our passengers and crew is our number one priority at all times,” she said.

It was the first time the ship had cruised in the Marlborough Sounds, as the company had just started offering New Zealand tours. The ship, which was coming from Akaroa, in Canterbury, berthed at Waitohi Wharf, in Picton, and departed the next day for Napier at 7pm on Wednesday.

Above: The Azamara Quest moored at Waitohi Wharf, in Picton Harbour. Photo by Scott Hammond.

Source  – The Marlborough Express

 

ice breaker rn

BRITISH SHIP PATROLS ROSS SEA FOR FIRST TIME SINCE 1936

The Royal Navy has returned to the Ross Sea for the first time since 1936.

Ice-breaking survey ship HMS Protector departed Hobart in December last year and has been inspecting fishing vessels. The patrol demonstrates Britain’s desire for a “UK presence across the entire Antarctic continent”, the Royal Navy said.

HMS Protector is the Royal Navy’s ice patrol ship and is deployed on operations for 330 days a year. She is 90m long and is crewed by 88 sailors and marines. The vessel visited Christchurch in January and then began to circumnavigate Antarctica. The New Zealand visit “signals closer cooperation” between the two nations to uphold conservation and prevent illegal fishing, the Navy statement said. Protector normally patrols off the British Antarctic Territory south of the Falklands.

Source   – Stuff

SAGA ENDS IN COSTS PAID BY THE CROWN

The Government has paid $140,000 towards Captain John Henderson’s defence costs over Maritime NZ’s failed prosecution of the Santa Regina Master.

Maritime NZ charged Capt Henderson with endangering his vessel and passengers by carrying out a return sailing of Cook Strait from Wellington following a collision at dock with a derelict vessel. Some damage was inflicted on the Santa Regina but was not located  during an inspection of the vessel following the collision.

The prosecution was dismissed by Judge Thomas Broadmore before going to a jury, and the Crown sought to appeal, then appealed the decision not to allow an appeal. In the end, Capt Henderson was vindicated and the prosecution was thrown out.

Defence costs were estimated at $280,000 and after submissions in which the Crown claimed Capt Henderson didn’t qualify for costs because his legal bills were paid by insurance, Judge Thomas Broadmore ruled that he was entitled, and ordered the parties to negotiate a settlement.  The outcome was a payment of $140,000 by the Crown.

flight recorder

CRUISE VESSELS CARRY BLACK BOX TOO!

All cruise vessels carry a voyage data recorder (VDR), the marine equivalent of the black box flight data recorder.

Since 2002 this has been mandatory for all passenger ships over 3000 gross tonnes. Contained within a tamper-proof shell designed to withstand fire, shock, immersion and pressure and generally located outside on the top deck, the VDR stores digital data relating to the last 12 hours of a vessel’s current voyage.

Among other vital information, the VDR records the ship’s position and speed, its bearing, the date and time, radar data, audio recordings and all telephone communications from the bridge, depth under the keel, wind and weather, rudder position, engine rpms and the status of all alarms and watertight doors.

This data is collected from sensors all around the ship and it’s vital in providing answers if ever the question is asked of a ship’s officers, in the event of an incident.

It was evidence from the ship’s VDR that helped sink Captain Francesco Schettino. After he drove the Costa Concordia on to rocks when he sailed too close to the Italian coast, audio from the bridge recorded Captain Schettino saying: “Madonna, what have I done?” even though for the next hour he continued to assure passengers and the Italian Coast Guard that the vessel had merely suffered a blackout.

DELAY IN RENA DECISION CONTINUES

Bay of Plenty Regional Council has advised that a decision on the Rena resource consent application will now be expected on February 22, 2016. A decision on the application, made by the owners and insurers of the Rena to leave the remnant of the wreck in place on Astrolabe Reed, was originally due on December 16. The extension request was made by the hearing panel who needed more time for appropriate consideration, and also to take into consideration the effect of the holiday season shut down.

The Council’s first call on the prosecution of Mobil Oil New Zealand in relation to the oil spill in Tauranga Harbour on April 27 had been administratively adjourned for a second call on December 14. The process may not be concluded until early in the new year.

FUTURISTIC US DESTROYER DESIGN SEES LIGHT OF DAY

The US Navy’s futuristic destroyer Zumwalt travelled down the Kennebec River in Maine this month, maneuvering toward the Atlantic Ocean.  It’s a path that many vessels have taken after being built at the Bath Iron Works shipyard, but it also signals the start of something significant: sea trials that will begin to reveal the unusually designed ship’s abilities afloat.

The long anticipated 186-metre-long (610-foot), 14000-tonne destroyer has an unconventional pyramid-shaped hull that slopes out at the bottom with a stealthy “tumblehome” design, rather than sloping in like most warships. That should make it harder to find on radar, but also has long raised questions about how stable it will be when facing tough seas.

The vessel cost more than US$4 billion (NZ$6b) to design and build, and is the first in a US$12.3b (NZ$18.5b), three-ship class named after Admiral Elmo Zumwalt, who served as chief of naval operations during the latter years of the Vietnam War. It also includes a new all-electric power design in which the ship’s gas-turbine engines power generators, rather than propellers, providing it with electrical energy that could be used to power high-tech weapons never before seen at sea. The propellers are powered from the electricity through electromagnets, conserving energy for other tasks.

As this story notes, the Zumwalt class was originally supposed to include 32 ships. As its cost grew, however, some senior Navy officials tried to kill the programme. Instead, it was shrunk to three ships: – The USS Zumwalt, the USS Michael Monsoor (named after a Navy Seal who was killed in Iraq and earned the Medal of Honour) and the USS Lyndon B Johnson (named after the 36th US president). Navy officials were considering cancelling the third ship, according to several reports.

The Zumwalt – which will receive its “USS” designation when it is christened – also is to be a test-bed for one of the US Navy’s most futuristic weapons, an electromagnetic rail gun under development by the Office of Naval Research. It uses electromagnetic pulses to launch projectiles at Mach 7, or seven times the speed of sound, at targets up to 177 kilometres away. It is commanded by Navy Captain James Kirk, who shares his name with the famous Star Trek captain.

Source – Washington Post.

1449710843495 zumwalt

The US Navy’s new, futuristic destroyer ‘Zumwalt’ may be hard to detect, but there are questions about its stability.

REVIEW SHOWS GOVT IS UNDERFUNDING MARITIME SECTOR

Minister of Transport, Simon Bridges, needs to urgently address the underfunding of Maritime NZ’s operations, according to Annabel Young, Executive Director of the NZ Shipping Federation.

“The midpoint revue of the Maritime Levy has resulted in new levy proposals that are dumping costs onto the marine sector.  These costs of MNZ are operational and should be met by government funding. Maritime NZ’s role is substantially for the benefit of the public.  Every New Zealander benefits from safe, secure and clean maritime operations.

“By ensuring that ships in New Zealand waters are meeting international maritime standards the government is meeting its own obligations under international treaties, as well as ensuring the uninterrupted import and export of goods from this country.

“Maritime transport is New Zealand’s lifeline,” Ms Young said. ” The Minister of Transport needs to step up and acknowledge the significant importance of the maritime part of his role and become an advocate for the sector.  Maritime should not be treated as an optional add-on to New Zealand transport infrastructure.”

NEW TANKERS FOR NEW ZEALAND REFINERY RUN

Two brand new 50,000 dwt tankers will soon be shipping petroleum products around the New Zealand coast, according to the Australian third party ship manager ASP Ship Management Group (ASP).

The new vessels will be chartered by Coastal Oil Logistics Limited (COLL) which transports petroleum products from Refining NZ at Marsden Point to New Zealand’s ports on behalf of its shareholders BP Oil New Zealand Limited, Chevron New Zealand, Mobil Oil New Zealand Limited and Z Energy Limited.

The new build vessels will replace COLL’s current tankers, the Torea and Kakariki, which have been in service by COLL for eight and 17 years respectively. The Torea’s replacement, a 50,000 dwt products tanker, is due to arrive in February 2016. The Kakariki replacement, a 50,000 dwt products/bitumen tanker, will be owned by ASP and will begin service in June 2017. Both tankers will be constructed at SPP Ship Building yard in Sacheon, South Korea.

COLL chief executive, Jon Kelly, said the new vessels, which are yet to be named, will position COLL well to meet its shareholders future shipping needs in New Zealand.

“This will be the most modern fleet of New Zealand operated vessels on our coast,”Mr Kelly said. “They will be substantially more fuel efficient than the older vessels they replace, and there will be a large reduction in emissions as a result of that efficiency,” he said.

The new vessels will be time chartered into COLL from Silver Fern Shipping Limited, the New Zealand subsidiary of ASP.

”ASP understands well the importance of the coastal petroleum distribution task to New Zealand and is pleased to provide these long term vessels for COLL and its shareholders and to continue our long standing relationship,” CEO of ASP Ship Management Group, David Borcoski, said. ”With the added capacities, eco design and enhanced fuel efficiencies, these high quality vessels bring a highly efficient shipping solution for COLL.”

The Kakariki and Torea will be returned to their owners at the end of their current time charter to COLL.

RISK MANAGEMENT IN THE FISHING INDUSTRY

The introduction of a new maritime safety system is boosting awareness of risk management in the commercial fishing sector, Maritime New Zealand Director Keith Manch believes.

The release of the 2014 Health and Safety Attitudes and Behaviours in the New Zealand Workforce surveys – involving agriculture, construction, forestry, manufacturing and commercial fishing – shows that businesses care about the welfare of workers, but this doesn’t always translate into safe work practices.

Survey factsheet [PDF: 199kB, 5 pages]

Report on survey results for the Commercial Fishing sector [PDF: 4.34MB, 207 pages]

The new Maritime Operator Safety System (MOSS), introduced in July last year, puts an emphasis on commercial maritime operators, including fishermen, identifying risks specific to their operations and putting in place measures to manage them.

MOSS also requires operators to have plans in place for reporting and recording incidents and ensuring staff receive health and safety training.
Commercial operators will transition into MOSS as their previous safe ship management certificates expire over the next four years. To date, around 158 commercial fishing operators are in MOSS, or are completing the application process. In total there are around 1000 commercial operators holding fishing permits.
To date 202 operations are in MOSS, covering more than 400 vessels, from a total of approximately 1700 operators. Where operators have yet to enter MOSS, Maritime NZ conducts audits to ensure the safety of operations.

Maritime NZ also introduced a new a seafarer certification framework, SeaCert, in July last year which will raise the level of competency for seafarers, including fishermen.

“The survey results highlight the importance of people working the fishing industry having a good appreciation of the risks in their workplaces and how to manage them,” Mr Manch said.

“Feedback from operators who have gone through the MOSS process indicates they are now more aware of the hazards of their operations, and have specific plans in place to manage these risks. MOSS has a focus on ensuring operations as a whole are safe, beyond simply looking at individual vessels.”

Survey results released today show that in the commercial fishing sector:
• about 65% of employers say their business practices are strongly influenced by the concern for the welfare of workers
• around 43% of employers and 51% of workers believe the industry is risker than others, but only around 4% of employers and 19% of workers felt there was a higher risk of a serious injury in their own workplace in the next 12 months
• around half of workers said a range of risky behaviours took place “from time to time”, such as working when overtired (61%), or sick/injured (56%)
• 92% of workers and 91% of employers are taking steps to prevent accidents from happening, including:
• a focus on using equipment and machinery safely
• talking about health and safety risks and how to manage them
• getting HSE training
• 76% of workers and 80% of employers think workers and their immediate bosses have the greatest responsibility for keeping people safe at work.

The 2014 Health and Safety Attitudes and Behaviours in the New Zealand Survey Workforce survey was a collaboration between Maritime New Zealand and WorkSafe New Zealand. Maritime New Zealand is responsible for health and safety in the commercial fishing sector. WorkSafe is responsible for health and safety in the agriculture, construction, forestry and manufacturing sectors.

Notifications of fatalities and reported injuries in the commercial fishing sector:

2014/15 (to date): 29 reported injury incidents (including 2 fatalities)

2013/14: 49 (3 fatalities)

2012/13: 51 (4 fatalities)

2011/12: 47 (12 fatalities – includes 8 who died following the Easyrider sinking).

NZ DRIVE ACHIEVES GREATER SHIP-BASED CRANE SAFETY

New Zealand is celebrating a significant victory at the International Maritime Organization in London. After more than eight years work, member states have agreed there is a need for an amendment to the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) Convention covering onboard lifting appliances – cranes, loose gear and winches.

Last month’s meeting of the Maritime Safety Committee saw a majority of member states in favour of amending the SOLAS convention to include requirements for lifting equipment, a proposal led by Maritime New Zealand delegates.

A SOLAS regulation will be developed around the design, construction and installation of onboard lifting appliances. In addition, these types of equipment will be maintained in accordance with guidelines that will also be developed to cover design, fabrication and construction; onboard procedures for routine inspection, maintenance and operation of lifting appliances and winches; and familiarisation of ship’s crew and shore-based personnel.

While New Zealand law currently addresses standards for lifting gear and enables action when a problem occurs in relation to foreign ships operating in New Zealand ports, the changes to SOLAS will lift standards internationally.  This will work to prevent vessels arriving at New Zealand ports with inadequate lifting equipment, and strengthen Maritime New Zealand’s ability to deal with problems through Port State control mechanisms.

Maritime New Zealand staff have been striving since 2007 to get this work started after recording 334 incidents at New Zealand ports on foreign-flagged vessels between 2000 and 2007, of which 64 involved ships’ lifting appliances. Eighteen of these incidents involved serious injury.

Concerns about lifting gear on foreign-flagged vessels prompted a focused inspection campaign and the results were presented in 2007 to the IMO’s Maritime Safety Committee which instructed New Zealand to submit a request for a new work programme item. In 2011, New Zealand successfully co-sponsored a proposal to add a work programme item to the IMO agenda to develop requirements for construction and installation of onboard lifting appliances.Successful lobbying of member states on the issue by Maritime NZ resulted in this latest outcome.

Maritime NZ Director Keith Manch said: “The work will not be complete until an amendment to the SOLAS convention that covers lifting equipment is adopted but this is a significant milestone. I am confident this work will make the industry safer at ports all over the world.

“Failure of ship cargo handling appliances puts stevedores at risk, as well as the crew of foreign ships handling cargoes in NZ ports. New Zealand imports and exports are also at significant risk of damage due to lifting appliance failure, and this work will help reduce that risk.

“It is likely to take several years to finalise the changes to SOLAS but we have made a significant step in the right direction.”

Since January 2013, seven incidents involving lifting equipment have occurred in New Zealand ports with one resulting in a significant injury to a ship’s crew member.

CENTREPORT PAYOUT $200,000+ FOR FORKLIFT DEATH

Wellington’s port company will have paid out more than $200,000 over the death of a worker, after a court case against it ended with a $60,000 fine. CentrePort was also ordered to pay $15,000 in reparation to the family of Mark Samoa, who was crushed between paper bales at the port in January 2013. That was in addition to more than $140,000 it has already paid to the family in reparation, lost wages, funeral, travel and legal costs, and the establishment of a $30,000 trust for Samoa’s children.

Fining the company $60,691 in the Wellington District Court yesterday, Judge Bill Hastings said the case had “shocked CentrePort into doing better” with its workplace safety standards. The family had gone into a freefall of despair, from which they were only now beginning to recover, he said. It was hard to assess reparation because it was “impossible to put a cost” on the loss of a loved one.

Samoa’s daughter Gemma, speaking for herself and her two brothers, said outside court that nothing was enough to compensate for the loss of their father.

His sister Rhonda said she considered the fine and reparation a token, and it was unfortunate that it had taken a prosecution for CentrePort to “step up”. “We are talking in terms of justice and workplace safety,” she said. The family had found it hard when they were told different things about what happened, and she had been pleased the case had been brought before a judge. “You have the right to go to work and earn a life for your family and to be safe.”

Mr Samoa died on January 30, 2013, after being crushed 10 days earlier when forklift driver Toa Tareha failed to see him pasting labels on paper bales. CentrePort pleaded not guilty to a charge of failing to take all practicable steps of keeping him safe.  Tareha was not charged. The judge found CentrePort failed to physically separate the tasks of placing stacks and the task of labelling stacks, and failed to have a clear and detailed procedure for all workers required to use forklifts, and for the pasting and labelling of packs.

CentrePort chief executive Blair O’Keefe said the company accepted the sentencing. The accident followed 15 years of incident-free pulp handling and demonstrated the potentially tragic consequences when human error and an unforeseen gap in standard operating procedures combined. He said CentrePort was focused on supporting Samoa’s family and making improvements.

The judge said that, because of the payments already made, he would order a modest reparation of $15,000. He noted that the safety hazard was “obvious”, and that CentrePort had since stopped handling pulp.

WorkSafe NZ, which brought the prosecution, said: “The judge was clear and so is WorkSafe. Businesses must have clear and well-understood methods of communications between workers undertaking different tasks in the same area.”

Maritime Union national secretary Joe Fleetwood said the waterfront industry was a dangerous one. Three union members had lost their lives in port accidents in recent years, there had been a larger number of serious injuries, and numerous deaths and injuries of contractors or other port employees.

The union’s main concern was fatigue from irregular shifts, the constant pressure on staff to work more quickly, and attempts to reduce manning.

 – Stuff

OIL SPILL AT TAURANGA COST MOBIL $700,000 IN CLEAN UP

An oil spill into Tauranga Harbour has cost Mobil almost $700,000 in clean-up bills and there’s more work to do. Around 1500 litres of oil spilled in late April when oil leaked from a rusty Mobil New Zealand-owned pipe while a boat was being refuelled. It has apologised for the pollution.

Bay of Plenty Regional Council said it had invoiced the company $691,766 for the clean-up costs to date. It had completed cleaning beaches around the harbour with operations finishing at worst affected area, Matakana, and at Rangiwaea Island, Pilot Bay and Sandy Bay.But there’s more work to be done after a small amount of oil was found at Tauranga Bridge Marina last week.

“We have reactivated clean-up efforts with prop washing and booms, recovering oil from the water, waterline scraping and solvent cleaning of dry marina structures,” said e said Adrian Heays, from BOP Council. Divers had been used to clean difficult surfaces under water, and the clean-up would continue until all areas were at an acceptable standard.

“Independent environmental monitoring will continue, and it is expected that Mobil will lead the affected parties through an appropriate recovery and mitigation process,” Mr Heays said. “The lasting impact of the pollution on shellfish in the area will not be known until the end of June.

ovation of the seas

POA EXPANSION HASN’T LOST LARGEST CRUISE SHIP CALL

Auckland City Council announced the biggest cruise ship to ever visit New Zealand, Ovation of the Seas, (above) will be stopping in Auckland twice in the 2016-17 season.

The brand-new, $1 billion, 348-metre ship carries about 4200 passengers and is expected to first dock in Auckland on December 27, 2016.The agreement between its owner, Royal Caribbean, and Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development (ATEED)comes after worries the ship would be unable to dock in Auckland if plans for two expansions to Auckland’s Bledisloe Wharf were canned.

The council and Ports of Auckland reached a compromise in April to allow one of two expansions to proceed.  It followed protests by residents, who claimed the consents for the project were illegal, and concerns by councillors about expansion into the harbour.

Cruise New Zealand chairman Kevin O’Sullivan said if both port expansions did not go ahead, it could mean Ovation of the Seas would have to skip Auckland. Royal Caribbean at the time said it would work with the council to still keep the Auckland visit on the itinerary.

Ovation of the Seas, which launches in 2016, includes features such as on-board bumper cars, basketball courts, and is the first ship ever to offer at-sea skydiving. Each visit by the ship is expected to add $1.7 million into the local economy, the council said. With its 4200 passengers and 1500 crew,  the ship will be the biggest cruise ship to ever visit New Zealand, and the newest and is the largest of Royal Caribbean’s fleet of cruise liners. The ship is being built in Germany.

The vessel, which has a price tag of US$1 billion (NZ$1.4bn) is scheduled to visit Port Chalmers three times during the 2016/17 season, as well as Tauranga and Auckland. The official Australian schedule for the vessel is yet to be announced.

FERRY MIXES WATER WITH FUEL TO CUT COSTS

By Joel Maxwell.

Interislander ferry the Arahura will have water added to its diesel in a bid to save running costs. Adding the water, the natural enemy of diesel engines, will be part of a trial that launched this month of a system offered by an Otaki-based tech firm.

Blended Fuels’ managing director Leigh Ramsey said the Arahura used about 40 tonnes of fuel a day, and the generator used about 5 tonnes daily. In the new system, diesel-oil coated water droplets turn to steam and blew apart during combustion, creating tiny fuel particles that burn more efficiently. It can take place thanks to an additive blended into the fuel along with the water – feeding into one of four 1MW electricity generators on the Arahura.

Mr Ramsey said a trial in 2013 showed fuel savings of between 3 percent and 5 percent – which could add up to a cut in fuel use of about 2 million litres a year. The concept of blending water to diesel was sometimes difficult for some people to get their heads around.

“But the people I’m working with, the customers, it’s a very short conversation explaining the how-it-works part. It really about how it’s going to work for them,” Mr Ramsey said. “It’s proven technology, people are doing it around the world, especially with these bigger applications.”

Meanwhile the engineer in charge of the project Malcom Sims said the blended system could cut the fuel bill and emissions from the Arahura.

“With the Arahura being retired at the end of July, it provides a safe, known and reliable platform on which to conduct operational tests in a controlled manner… while these are still early days, there is definitely scope for potentially installing the technology across the fleet.”

Mr Sims said the blended system had lower harmful emissions compared with normal fuels and this boosted health and safety for those who have to work with it.

Source:  Stuff  NZ

SHIP’S MASTER PROSECUTED FOR BEING DRUNK

A ship’s captain found drunk on the bridge of a bulk carrier has been fined $3000, and may face serious economic impacts.

Pramod Kumar, 37, pleaded guilty to attempting to perform designated duties while over the limit. Tauranga police breath-tested him, when he gave a reading of 1229 micrograms of alcohol per litre of breath, almost five times the legal limit of 250mg/l.

His ship, the African Harrier, arrived at the Port of Tauranga about 2am after a 47-day voyage, to unload bagged fertiliser.  Captain Kumar left the ship on Saturday and was called back on Sunday because loading finished early.

On the bridge of the 37,000-tonne ship, the pilot noticed Captain Kumar was drunk and called Maritime New Zealand, which called the police. Kumar’s lawyer Nicholas Dutch said the ship was still alongside the wharf at the time, and the captain of the type of ship involved did not drive it.

“The pilot would have steered the ship out of Tauranga harbour, then the first or second officer would have taken over,” he said.

But Captain Kumar was legally in charge of the ship by being on the bridge. He “should have gone to bed and not gone anywhere near the bridge”, Mr Dutch said.

Pramod Kumar had been a captain for five years. Being given a new ship such as the African Harrier as a command was an indication of his standing with his employers. He was being flown back to Mumbai tonight where he faced consequences that could have serious economic effects.

Judge Robert Wolff said the ship was still tied up and others were able to undertake Kumar’s duties, so there was no real or appreciable risk. He fined Kumar $3000, plus $130 court costs.

Maritime NZ said Kumar was the first person to be charged since a law change in October 2013. The prosecution and sentence should send a strong message to the maritime industry, Maritime NZ director Keith Manch said.

“This sort of conduct by the master of a vessel cannot be tolerated,” he said. “The vast majority of masters take their responsibilities very seriously but in this case it was clear that firm action was required.”

Source – Stuff

SKIPPER’S LICENCES A PRIORITY, SAYS TAIC

A skipper’s licence for boaties, random drug testing for pilots and greater use of tracking devices have been highlighted as priority issues by the country’s transport safety watchdog. The Transport Accident Investigation Commission has released its inaugural “watch list” of safety issues that need addressing to reduce accidents and save lives.

Chief commissioner John Marshall, QC, said the three issues on the list were the commission’s “most pressing concerns” across the aviation, maritime and rail sectors. There was a concern that maritime rules placed no obligation on recreational skippers to demonstrate knowledge of safe boating behaviour.

“This is a flawed system and one New Zealanders would not accept on the road, on rails or in the air,” Mr Marshall said. “A licensing system would [solve] this, but the concern might also be met through other means.”

He repeated the commission’s concerns about transport operators being impaired by drugs and alcohol. The issue surfaced after several investigations, most notably the Carterton hot-air ballooning tragedy in 2012 in which 11 people died, including the pilot, who had cannabis in his system. The commission recommended compulsory testing for drugs and alcohol, as well as random testing of people in safety-critical transport roles.

“It is simply wrong that the commission, regulators or police cannot require blood tests of people who survive the occurrences we deal with,” Mr Marshall said. “How else can we give satisfactory answers to a public that deserves the best explanation possible as to what went wrong?”

He said operators in the aviation, maritime and rail sectors were under-using the technology available to track and locate planes, ships and trains.

“It is an issue that has been high in the public’s awareness as a result of the missing Malaysia Airlines flight,” he said.

The commission recommended the transport sector do more to encourage, and in some cases require, operators to use tracking and locator devices.

“We are not just talking about airlines flying wide-bodied jets internationally,” Mr Marshall said. “We are also talking about recreational boaties thinking about investing in lifesaving devices such as a personal locator beacon.”

The commission plans to review its watch list annually and add to it over time. Its concerns will be removed once the commission is satisfied they have been dealt with properly.

TEMPORARY PAUSE IN RENA SALVAGE

Tauranga business owners and iwi are disappointed Maritime NZ has supported a request from the owner’s of the Rena to pause salvage work on the wreck.

MNZ has granted a temporary pause on salvage operations pending the outcome of a resource consent application made by the ship’s owners, to allow parts of the wreck to remain on the Astrolabe (Otaiti) Reef. The pause would only take affect after the wreck reaches the state set out in the application, which says the wreck will be left in a “benign and practicable” state.

Mount Maunganui business owner Nevan Lancaster said allowing a pause in salvage was “opening the door” for the ship’s owners and insurers to walk.

“Once they have gone, they will never, ever come back – if they are allowed to walk out, that’s it, they won’t be back and we will never see them again. This is what the government is doing. They are making it easy for them to walk away,” he said.

The application made under the Resource Management Act is due to be heard later this year by commissioners appointed by the Bay of Plenty Regional Council.

Mr Lancaster, of Mount Maunganui’s Pilot Bay, said the government had shown incompetency in dealing with the issue.

“What they should of done three years ago is make the insurance company to get rid of the wreck, no ifs, no buts,” he said. “New Zealand is the only country in the world that feels we need to save the insurance company $500million – why I have no idea? We are getting no benefit to this.”

He said NZ would be left with a “toxic legacy” while the ship’s liability insurers, the Swedish Club, saved millions.

“For some reason we have to do what the owners say, it is just pathetic. The Rena struck the reef, about 25kilometres off the coast of Tauranga, on October 5, 2011. It subsequently broke up, spilling containers and more than 300 tonnes of heavy fuel oil into the environment,” he said.

In allowing a temporary pause, two notices imposed by the Director of Maritime NZ will remain in place declaring the wreck a “hazardous ship” (under section 47 of the Maritime Transport Act) and a “hazard to navigation” (under section 100A of the MTA), said MNZ. The notices – which have recently been updated to reflect the current state of the salvage operation – require debris removal, and removal of all known copper cargo, to be completed to a depth of 30m, and any release of hazardous substances to be monitored.

“We know its going to come to an end one day, but let’s not rush out and let the Kiwis working for this company get fired sooner rather than later – kiss goodbye to a $200million investment in the region.”

Tangata whenua representative Awanui Black said there would be concern over leaving the salvage unfinished.

When things are left in the air there will always be concern from the community, especially as the grounding and subsequent fallout has had such a huge and wide ranging impact on the community.Ideally salvage would continue until the environment was back to it’s pre-Rena state, he said.”That has been what tangta whenua have wanted right from the beginning and we have never shifted from that.”

Simon Marshall, from Tauranga’s marine business Maui Ocean Products, said stopping salvage work now would be costly. Mr Marshall’s company provided products and services for the salvage operation and had recently settled with the insurers for compensation over loss of income due to the grounding.

“A lot of New Zealand companies did pretty well out of the grounding. We do get income, which makes up for some of the loss of income at the start. The best weather we have is in January, February and March, so their best bet would be to do as much as they can during those months, they don’t achieve a lot in winter due to the swells at the reef,” he said.

But Hugo Shanahan, a spokesperson for the ship’s owners and insurers, said salvors had spent seven months using salvage equipment and divers to clear cargo and other debris from the reef.

“This operation has reached the stage where the scale and type of operation is no longer an efficient or practicable way of recovering debris.”

Resolve Salvage would be handing over operations to a local firm to engage a NZ-based operator to complete the final salvage stage using commercial divers to remove debris by hand, he said. This work would bring the wreck site to its proposed consented state, which would be assessed as part of the resource consent application process later this year.

Mr Shanahan said the wreck site and the reef environment would be monitored in accordance with the Regional Council and other agencies. Measures are in place to respond to any release of flotsam or other material from the wreck site. This would continue throughout the period required to finally determine the owner’s resource consent application and if it is granted, this monitoring would continue for a further ten years.”

Maritime NZ Director Keith Manch said the pause was a temporary measure to allow the owners to go through the resource consent application process. The application made under the Resource Management Act is due to be heard later this year by commissioners appointed by the Bay of Plenty Regional Council.

Source – Stuff

CREW ERRORS LED TO RENA GROUNDING – TAIC REPORT

The grounding of the Rena off the Bay of Plenty coast in 2011 can’t be blamed on the malfunction of any on-board equipment. Instead it was a series of failures by the ship’s crew that ultimately led to New Zealand’s worst maritime environmental disaster.

The Transport Accident Investigation Commission issued its final report of its inquiry into how and why the Liberian-flagged container ship ran aground on the Astrolabe Reef.

The TAIC found that the Rena‘s passage plan from Napier to Tauranga didn’t meet safety management standards or best industry practice. Most crucially, the Rena‘s second mate deviated from the passage plan to take the ship closer to the reef to save time.

(Full report on this website on Industry Topics pages)

DECADES OF SERVICE END FOR ‘RED LADIES’

By Tim Donoghue

CentrePorts’s long-serving little red tugboat sisters, Toia and Ngahue, are to sail out of Wellington for good.

Foreign crews are expected to sail the “little toots” out of Wellington Harbour early next month on a two-month voyage to Dubai via Singapore, after they were sold to Delta Offshore International for an undisclosed sum.

Captain Charles Smith, the Toia‘s first captain, said it would be sad to farewell the vessels. Now CentrePort’s marine services manager, Capt Smith was on board Toia when it first sailed into Wellington Harbour on February 22, 1972, after its delivery voyage from Whangarei. That maiden voyage 42 years ago was skippered by Wellington’s then Harbourmaster Bill Galloway, with Wellington harbour pilot John Westbrooke as mate and newly appointed tugmaster Charles Smith as second mate.

Toia tugmaster’s job by deputy harbourmaster Cyril Sword before taking command.

“It was a case of suck it and see without any formal training other than some brief exposure to Voith handling on the Voith tug Waitangi in Whangarei.”

Since its arrival, Toia’s engines have operated for 36,500 hours, mostly on Wellington Harbour duties. But Toia has also done charter operations in the ports of Napier, Bluff, Lyttelton, Nelson and Taranaki. It has also towed five small, aged vessels out into Cook Strait on scuttling missions.

During its time in Wellington, Toia assisted 32,700 vessels and used 5.4 million litres of fuel. Toia and Ngahue have overseen some 57,000 ship movements and safely guided countless passengers and freight in and out of Wellington Harbour. They are popular with the public and will definitely be missed, Capt Smith said.

Ngahue was launched in Whangarei on October 15, 1977. It arrived in Wellington on December 3, 1977, and was commissioned in January 1978.

In recent years, CentrePort had bought the Asian-built tugs Tapuhi (2012) and Tiaki (2007), which each have bollard pulls of 68 tonnes – more than twice the 28-tonne pulls of Toia and Ngahue. The new tugs are more than capable of handling the many cruise liners of more than 300 metres long that call into Wellington Harbour.

At left: After more than 40 years at the helm in Wellington Harbour, Captain Charles Smith will  farewell his ‘‘red ladies of the sea’’ – tugboats Toia, and Ngahue.

Source – Stuff NZ.

MOSS CERTIFICATIONS UNDER WAY NOW…..

Mussel Barge Snapper Safaris is the first operator in the Coromandel, and one of the first small operators in the country, to be certified under Maritime New Zealand’s new Maritime Operator Safety System (MOSS).

The introduction of MOSS is the biggest change in the industry in 15 years, replacing the Safe Ship Management (SSM) system which required operators to work through a safe ship management company to develop a safety system for their vessels.

MNZ Compliance Manager Central, Pelin Davison, said MOSS enables a direct relationship between operators and Maritime New Zealand.

“MOSS makes operators responsible for developing a safety system covering not only their vessels, but their entire operation,” she said. “Operators no longer have to work through a third party to develop safety plans. After all, the operators know their businesses best and are the ones best-placed to assess the risks and hazards of their operations.”

Mussel Barge Snapper Safaris operates three vessels for snapper fishing charters in local mussel farms, averaging 800 trips and about 10,000 customers year. Owner/operator Darryl O’Keeffe, who is also president of the Thames/Coromandel Charter Boat Association, said the MOSS process had real benefits in preparing a Maritime Transport Operator Plan.

“It made us be proactive about the process of assessing risk,” he says. “We sat down as a team and discussed our business requirements. It made our skippers aware of every issue in the health and safety plan.Our staff are more aware and more responsible for the plan, which now fits our business to a ‘T’.”

The end product is a Maritime Transport Operator Certificate (MTOC), presented by Ms Davison.

“MOSS provides a balance between operators developing and implementing their own safety system, and MNZ providing the right amount of regulatory oversight for these systems,” she said.

The principles guiding MOSS are improving safety by putting a greater focus on vessel owners and operators operating safely; creating clearer lines of responsibility for the day-to-day safe operation of vessels; providing effective and efficient regulatory oversight by MNZ, and making it easier for operators, surveyors and MNZ staff to support safe vessels and safe operating practices.

Further information on MOSS is available on the MNZ website: www.maritimenz.govt.nz/Commercial/Safety-management-systems/MOSS/default.asp.

MNZ TO REVIEW COASTAL NAVIGATION SAFETY

Maritime New Zealand (MNZ) is undertaking a review of coastal navigation safety to identify risks and assess current and potential safety measures.

MNZ Director Keith Manch said the review, which begins in July, is part of a focus on developing an intelligence-led, risk-focused approach to maritime safety.

“In order to appropriately manage risks in the coastal environment we need an accurate and up-to-date picture of what those risks are,” he said. “We are seeing an increased number of ship visits to New Zealand, an international trend toward larger ships, and technology changes in the field of navigational aids – all these factors mean a review of coastal navigation risks is timely.”

The first phase, likely to take around 12 months, will involve assessing the nature of risks around coastal navigation and how they are being managed.

“We are taking an open-minded approach, so the first thing to do is establish what risks actually exist and what measures are in place to address them,” Mr Manch said. “If changes are recommended as an outcome of the risk assessment, then the next step will involve consideration of options to improve coastal navigation safety.”

Mr Manch said the review process would involve consultation with government agencies, local government and private sector interests, It would consider such issues as the types of activity being carried out in the coastal environment, human factors, and technology.

“The review is not a response to any particular incident, but obviously we will consider what can be learned from major incidents such as the grounding of the Rena,” Mr Manch said.

The annual numbers of ships, voyages and port calls have continued to increase each year since 2009/10. (Voyages are defined as ships arriving, leaving, or arriving and leaving New Zealand within the stated time period.)

In the 2010/11 year, 790 ships made 2,167 voyages and 5,386 port calls. In the 2012/13 year, 869 ships made 2,342 voyages and 5,622 port calls.

TOP PRIZE FOR NZMS CADET

The New Zealand Maritime School has awarded the top year two Nautical Science cadet with the prestigious Captain Worth Memorial Prize. O’Shea Butler, who is studying a Diploma of Nautical Science, was also presented with a $1000 scholarship from the Auckland Branch of Master Mariners Association for his academic excellence.

Warden of the Auckland Branch of Master Mariners, Captain Ted Ewbank presented the scholarship . He said:  “We hope to see the present and future winners of this scholarship proceed through maritime careers while maintaining integrity and professionalism.”

O’Shea Butler said that he appreciated the support that was given by the MIT NZ Maritime School “and everything they have taught me has rubbed off very nicely.”

As well as being presented with these two awards, O’Shea Butler was chosen as one of 10 first year NZ Maritime School students taken on every year by Holland America Line to be cadets to gain experience on board the company’s cruise ships.

Holland America Line offers 10 cadetships to NZ Maritime School students each year. The cadets work on board Holland America Line ships to gain the sea time needed for their qualification and also spend time in the classroom covering the academic aspects of their course.

“I have really enjoyed my time at sea so far and look forward to going back in December,” O’Shea said. “I spent four and a half months aboard the MS Oosterdam as a cadet officer where I did everything from fire fighting to lifesaving and navigation.”

Viking Maritime Recruitment enlists the cadets on behalf of Holland America line and Managing Director Andrew Howarth said that as well as the cadets who are still studying, Holland America Line also employed an additional six graduates from the NZ Maritime School last year.

“There is a big demand for qualified graduates for both deck and engine roles,” he said.

Holland America line also sponsors the Manukau Institute of Technology’s NZ Maritime School by US$200,000 per year.

ABOVE RIGHT: Left to Right: Amy Welch from Viking Maritime Recruitment, O’Shea Butler, Cornelius Buckens, Programme Co-ordinator at MIT NZ Maritime School and Andrew Howarth, Managing Director at Viking Maritime Recruitment, were present for the award ceremony.

CHANGES IN NZMS LEADERSHIP TEAM

After 23 years, Captain Tim Wilson, shown at below left, will be moving out of day to day New Zealand Maritime School activities from 30 September to focus on his executive role in Manukau Institute of Technology and the establishment of a new commercial subsidiary, EnterpriseMIT Ltd.

Following a 20 month international search, Paul Harper, shown at far right, will succeed Tim as Executive Dean, Maritime. Paul is currently the Programme Coordinator, Marine Engineering at the New Zealand Maritime School.

Paul holds an MBA, a Class 1 Marine Engineer and sailed as Chief Engineer in the international fleet. He also has management experience within the shipping industry globally, including technical management roles with SSM Ltd of Glasgow and Jebsens of Norway, Chief Executive of Carter Holt Harvey Lodestar and Group General Manager of Interisland Line. Paul currently holds a number of Directorships, including Port of Napier Ltd and Netlogix Ltd, a 4PL logistics company.   

Tim will remain involved in the maritime industry in an Emeritus Director role that will involve continuing his chairmanship of GlobalMET and involvement with both the IMO and the maritime forum for the time being. He will also see the current reviews of maritime and logistics qualifications and introduction of SeaCert through to completion in terms of the development of the new qualifications and learning programmes.

 MORE SOON – SO KEEP CHECKING BACK HERE !