- Transport on Line - hiltunen.htm


Philippines raises fees on foreign ships in coastal trades

The Philippine Maritime Industry Authority has increased charges for
foreign-registry ships that wish to sail coastal trades in the country.
The charge will be either a minimum of 50,000 Philippine pesos/U.S.$1,895
or 200 pesos/U.S.$7.58 per gross ton each month, whichever is greater.
This replaces a rate of 60 pesos/U.S.$2.27 per gross ton and 12,000 pesos/U.S.$460
for each time a ship requests a special permit to trade between Philippine
ports or operate on a bareboat charter.

Australia to reduce ship levies

Australia plans to save Australian$3.5 million/U.S.$2.6 million annually
by reducing Australian Maritime Safety Authority levies on ships over 20,000
tons. Essentially a port tax, the levies will be halved 1 July.

Pentow Marine, SmitWijs in global pool

Pentow Marine (Pty.) Ltd. and SmitWijs Towage C.V. have formed a global
pooling allaince for their tugs.

Lavinia, Yugreftransflot in refrigerated venture

Lavinia Corp. and Yugreftransflot are forming a joint venture to own
a new fleet of refigerated ships. They will be delivered over the next
two and a half years from Ukraine.

Chinese firm to establish new holding company

Shanghai Haixing Shipping Co. Ltd. has received permission to form China
Shipping Group, which will have controling stakes in Dalian Shipping, Guangzhou
Shipping & Enterprises Co. Ltd. and Shanghai Shipping (Group) Co. With
450 ships, it will be the second largest line in China.

Malaysia to open radar stations next month

Malaysia has announced that nine radar stations along the Strait of
Malacca will open next month to aid in vessel traffic safety and surveilance
against smuggling and illegal migrants. At a cost of 100 million Malaysian
ringgit/U.S.$39.9 million, sites have been set-up at Bukit Jugra, Bukit
Penggerang, Bukit Segenting, Port Klang, Pulau Angsa, Pulau Undan, Tanjung
Kemarung, Tanjung Piai and Tanjung Tuan.

Sierra Leone under War Clauses

The War Risks Rating Committee has placed Sierra Leone under the Institute
of London Underwriters' War Clauses as of 5 June. The decision, which affects
insurance for ships sailing near the country, comes after a coup d'etat
on 25 May and ensuing fighting.

Germany to increase liability limit on inland vessels

Germany will raise the maximum liability limit for inland vessels from
0.2 German marks/U.S.$0.11 to 19 marks/U.S.$11 per kilogram of cargo.

United Kingdom abandons plan to build royal yacht

The new British government has abandoned plans to build a royal yacht
to replace the H.M.Y. Britannia. The new vessel would have cost about 60
million British pounds/U.S.$97.6 million.

U.S. court to rule in shipwreck case

The U.S. Supreme Court on 9 June accepted an appeal from the State of
California in which it will decide the circumstances under which a state
can negate private lawsuits and take ownership of historic shipwrecks in
state waters. In California v. Deep Sea Research (No. 96-1400), the U.S.
Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit rejected California's claim to the
Brother Jonathan (67.1-meter/220-foot paddlewheel steamer built in 1850)
that sank in 1865. More than 200 people were killed. The wreck was found
in 1993 after a 20-year search paid for by 100 investors, whose organization
was awarded title to the ship by lower federal courts. California argues
that the courts ignored the U.S. Abandoned Shipwreck Act of 1987, which
was meant increase the ability of states to claim such wrecks.

Sweden forms committee on maritime industry

The Swedish government has set-up a committee to study the structure,
financial aspects and condition of its maritime industry, with an emphasis
on small shipping firms. A report is due by 15 June, 1998.

Italian ship agencies merge

The agency operations of two Italian firms have merged. The personnel
of Cambiaso Agenzia Marittima will move to Banchero Costa & Co. S.p.A.'s
facility in Genoa, Italy.

Mitsui O.S.K. Lines, Magsaysay Lines to recruit Philippine personnel

Magsaysay-MOL Marine Inc. has been formed as a joint venture between
Magsaysay Lines Inc. and Mitsui O.S.K. Lines. Operating in Manila, the
Philippines, it will recruit and supply qualified Philippine citizens to
Mitsui O.S.K. Lines. The Philippine Overseas Employment Administration
gave the firm its license on 6 June. Magsaysay-MOL Marine will supply personnel
to 60 ships and expects to involve 1,300 people.

C.G.M. to remain privatized

The French Council of State has rejected a recommendation to annul the
1996 privatization of Compagnie Generale Maritime.

More on ruling on harbor maintenance fee applied to U.S. exports

On 3 June, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit ruled 4
to 1 that the collection of a harbor maintenance fee on exports in unconstitutional.
The fee had been collected by the U.S. Customs Sevice. After ruling on
the case (U.S. Shoe Corporation vs. United States, CAFC-96-1210), the court
issued an injunction against further collection. Exporters that want to
challenge the collection of the fee do not have to file a protest, but
may file a lawsuit directly with the U.S. Court of International Trade
seeking a refund for fees paid in the last two years. The U.S. Department
of Justice is seeking a stay of the judgment and the injunction, pending
a decision by the solicitor general to appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court.
The Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit affirmed an October 1995 decision
by the Court of International Trade. Its decision stated that the fee was
not a regulation of commerce nor a user fee, but rather a tax. The imposition
of the fee on export cargoes in transit was found to violate the U.S. Constitution.
Started in 1987, the fee is 0.125 percent, or U.S.$0.125 per U.S.$100 of

Det Norske Veritas assigns price to lives in bulk carrier study

Det Norske Veritas has completed a cost-benefit analysis of mandated
changes to bulk carriers involving the strengthening of the bulkhead between
the first and second cargo holds. D.N.V. first examined bulk carrier losts
and estimated how much it could cost to accomplish the changes, which are
needed in 70 percent of the global fleet. Among the conclusions was that
a crewmember's life on an older Capesize bulk carrier is "worth"
U.S.$1.5 million, and crewmembers on newer Handysize ships are "worth"

1997 National Oceanographic Partnership Program announced

On 10 June, the 1997 National Oceanographic Partnership Program was
announced by the U.S. government. U.S. Public Law 104-201 has made available
U.S.$13 million of the U.S. Navy's research, development, test and engineering
funds and marked U.S.$7.5 million in operations and maintenance funds for
N.O.P.P. surveys. Personnel from 48 organizations in 19 states will receive
the funding, with half of them academic institutions and a third from industry
and private groups. The rest are government activities. Among the goals
this year is a planning workshop/study to develop a plan for a "Virtual
Data Center" concept for implementation in 1998. If a need is found
for a centralized location for oceanographic data of use to the United
States, one will be formed. Other items include: development of a National
Littoral Ocean Observing and Predictive System by Harvard University; a
Multi-scale Model-driven Sampling with Autonomous Systems at a National
Littoral Laboratory by Rutgers University; a Gulf of Mexico Ocean Monitoring
System, by Dynalysis of Princeton University; Coastal & Marine Aerosol
Processes by the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory; SeaNet, extending the
Internet to the oceanographic research fleet by Joint Oceanographic Institutions
Inc; Monitoring the North Pacific for Improved Ocean, Weather, and Climate
Forecasts by the University of Washington; The Bridge, or Marine Education
Clearinghouse, by the Virginia Institute of Marine Sciences; JASON IX:
Descending the Ocean Ladder - Expanding Student and Teacher Access to Ocean
Science Research, by the JASON Foundation; COAST: Consortium for Oceanographic
Activities for Student and Teachers, by the University of Southern Mississippi;
Bringing the Ocean into the Precollege Classroom Through Field Investigations
at a National Underwater Laboratory, by Rutgers University; and Enhancing
K-12 Science Education Via Satellite-Televised Interactive Technologies,
by the University of South Florida, with continued operation of the MEDEA
Ocean Panel and support of a project office.

New insurance offered

Global Special Risks, of Willis Corron, is offering insurance especially
for research vessels. The Tamos offer is available for one to three years,
with coverage of the vessel, equipment, personnel and obsevers. It will
cover for protection and indemnity up to U.S.$25 million on physical loss
or damage to ships and equipment. There is also legal liability for pollution
and cargo.


T.M.M. to end Asia - United States service

After more than 20 years, Transportacion Maritima Mexicana S.A. de C.V.
will end container service between Asia and the United States around 20

Mediterranean Shipping to offer Australia to Far East calls

Mediterranean Shipping Co. will begin a new service in August with three
1,100-TEU capacity containerships. Calls will be made every two weeks,
starting with the arrival of a ship in Shanghai, China, on 7 Aug. Transshipment
cargo will be accepted for several destinations. After Shanghai, ships
will call at Chiwan, China; Hong Kong; Singapore; the Australian ports
of Freemantle, Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane; Yokohama and Osaka, Japan;
Pusan, South Korea; and Shanghai.

COMANAV sailing between Casablanca and France, United Kingdom

Compagnie Marocaine de Navigation has begun a weekly container service
using the Ourigane (Moroccan-registry 3,357-dwt, 195-TEU capacity containership
built in 1975, operated by COMANAV). Calls will be made at Casablanca,
Morocco; the French ports of Le Havre, Dunkirk and Rouen; and Southampton,

Chinese coastal service begins

A new container service, operated by China Ocean Shipping Co., has begun
between several Chinese ports. The rotation begins at Bayuquan New Port
in Yingkou, Liaoning Province, then proceeds to Shanghai, Huangpu, Shekou,
Xiamen, Qingdao, Shanghai and Yingkou. Calls are made three times each
month, with Yingkou on the 5th, 15th and 25th of each month. A voyage is
then started the next day.

New route links Oita to a Chinese port for the first time

Minsheng Kambara Marine Shipping Co. will begin a container service
between Shanghai, China, and Oita, Japan, next month. The joint venture
of Kambara Kisen Co. will operate a 4,400-ton vessel and will arrive at
Oita every other Thursday. The route is the first linking Oita to a Chinese

O.O.C.L. and Sea Consortium announce joint service

Orient Overseas Container Line and Sea Consortium have started a fixed-day,
weekly service between Mumbai, India; Port Klang, Malaysia; and Singapore.
The venture has advance berthing reservations at Mumbai.

Heung-A Shipping in new container route

Heung-A Shipping will start offering a container service between Takamatsu,
Japan, and Pusan, South Korea, this month. It will use a 188-TEU capacity
ship. A double-link jib crane with a capacity of 36.7 tons went into operation
at a container terminal in Takamatsu last month.

Seawind Line to introduce new ferry, shift another

Seawind Line Oy A.B. will introduce a second cargo and passenger ferry
to its service from Turku, Finland, to Stockholm, Sweden. The Gotland (26,000-gt,
6,124-dwt ro/ro ferry built in 1996) will be chartered from Gotlandsbolaget
and replaces a trailer ferry. As of June 10, service is offered daily in
both directions. Also, the Sea Wind II (Swedish-registry 1,950-dwt ro/ro
ferry built in 1979) will be shifted to Nordic Trucker Line's service from
Oxelosund, Sweden, to St. Petersburg, Russia.

Lys-Line increases service frequency

Lys-Line has increased the frequency of service between Lyseki, Sweden;
Oslo, Norway; and the Irish ports of Dogheda and Warrenpoint. Calls will
be made weekly instead of every two weeks. Calls can also be made at Falkenburg,
Sweden; Wicklow, Ireland; and Belfast, Northern Ireland. Two vessels will
be added: the Lysekil (Norwegian-registry 2,080-dwt ro/ro built in 1979,
operated by Simonsen & Slang A/S) and the Lysholmen (Norwegian-registry
3,319-dwt ro/ro built in 1981, operated by Simonsen & Slang). Only
one ship had sailed the route before.


Panamanian president signs canal regulations into law

Panamanian President Ernesto Perez Balladares signed legislation on
11 June that specifies Panamanian control of the Panama Canal. The canal
will be turned over by the United States on 31 Dec., 1999. The Panama Canal
Authority and replace the Panama Canal Commission and all U.S. laws.

Dublin halted by talks

Unaccompanied freight operation at the Port of Dublin, Ireland, came
to a standstill 6 June and resumed 11 June. Truck drivers and container
lines resolved the driver action by agreeing to rate increases between
10 and 40 percent.

Naples closed after unexploded World War II bomb found

The Port of Naples, Italy, was closed 8 June along with many roads in
the area after an exploded World War II-era bomb was found. About 150 families
living near the site where the U.S. bomb was found were evacuated, and
vessels were not allowed to anchor in the harbor. A semi-circle of tires,
five meters/16 feet tall and about 25 meters/82 feet long, was built around
the bomb. It was found during work to expand the port in the Sant'Erasmo
area, near the center of Naples.

Shandong to improve 12 ports

The Chinese province of Shandong will spend 1.02 billion Chinese yuan/U.S.$123
million to expand the container handling capabilities of 12 ports. They
include facilities at Jinan, Jining, Tainan, Weifang and Zibo. The province
as a whole will be able to handle one million TEUs annually.

Russia to build three terminals on the Gulf of Finland

Russian President Boris N. Yeltsin recently signed a decree in St. Petersburg,
Russia, to build three new terminals on the Gulf of Finland. They will
handle crude oil, dry cargo and petroleum products.

Antwerp terminal opens

The second riverside container terminal in Antwerp, Belgium, opened
13 June. The Nordzee Terminal was built by the Antwerp Port Authority at
a cost of 3 billion Belgian francs/U.S.$86 million. The 650,000-TEU facility
is located outside the sealocks and will be operated on a long-term lease
by Container Terminal Noord. The company is 33 percent owned by Belgian
National Railways, with the rest held by Noord Natie Terminals N.V., which
will operate it. The terminal has four high-speed post-Panamax cranes.

Japanese minstry suspends labor law at six ports

The Japanese Ministry of Labor has suspended a law regulating the number
of dockworkers employed at six major ports.

Sale of Rostock operator halted

A German court has issued an injunction to stop the operator of the
Port of Rostock, Germany, from being sold to the Kent Group. The Green
Party in the city council requested the injunction, saying that the offer
to buy the firm for 19 million German marks/U.S.$11 million was too low.
It has 77 million marks/U.S.$45 million in share capital. In addition,
the party said it would hinder future development. The sale was agreed
to in principle in summer 1996.

New port proposed in Macau

Ng Fok, a property developer, hotel operator and trader in Macau, has
proposed building a U.S.$500 million port on an artificial island in the
area. He presented the plan to the Sino-Portuguese Coordination Commission
this month. It would be capable of handling 50,000-dwt ships.

New French government cancels planned canal

The French government will cancel a planned canal between the Mosel/Rhine
rivers and the Doubs/Rhone river basin. The previous government had planned
to build the canal to bring more traffic to the Port of Marseilles, France.
Environmental concerns were said to be important factors in the decision
to abandon the plan.

Petroperu selling two terminals

Petroperu S.A. has announced plans to sell two oil terminals at Talara,
Peru. The two can handle 20,000 barrels per day and reportedly are valued
at U.S.$40 million.

Dumaguete to receive new fast ferry terminal

A fast ferry terminal will be built in Dummaguette, the Philippines,
at a cost of 130 million Philippine pesos/U.S.$4.93 million. The structure
would be built on 1.3 hectares/3.2 acres of land, spanning a pumpboat area
and a portion of a boulevard.

Removal of wrecks in Scheldt planned

As part of plans to deepen the Scheldt River leading to Antwerp, Belgium,
about 100 sunken objects will be removed. Many are vessels that sank during
World War II but there are also containers. The work will take four years
will reportedly cost 10 million Dutch guilders/U.S.$5.2 million for each
wreck, since many are partially buried in sand. Further sinking was prevented
when the objects reached a hard clay layer.

Dredging at Boston berth begins

Dredging of a berth at Massachusetts Port Authority's Conley Terminal
in Boston began 5 June. Some 610 meters/2,000 feet of the berth will be
dredged to a depth of 14 meters/45 feet. The project will cost U.S.$2 million
to U.S.$3 million, and is part of U.S.$75 million worth of planned work
at the port. Over 18 months, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will dredge
the port from 11 meters/35 feet to between 11.5 meters/38 feet and 12.2
meters/40 feet. The bulk of the funding will come from the federal government.

Gulf Industrial Investment to use bulk carrier for storage

Gulf Industrial Investment Co. will use a self-unloading Panamax bulk
carrier at its steel mill in Bahrain for transshipment and storage. The
U.S.$70 million deal with Coeclerici Logistics will increase the mill's
annual iron ore import capacity of 4.5 million tons.

Saudi Aramco installs new single-point mooring buoy

Saudi Aramco said recently it installed a single-point mooring buoy
in record time. Installation of the SPM-32 buoy at the Ju'aymah Terminal
in Ras Tanura, Saudi Arabia, was also reportedly 20 percent under budget.
The buoy is capable of supplying 140,000 barrels of crude oil per hour.


Clash at Spanish yard injuries several people

A confrontation between employees of Astilleros Espanoles S.A.'s shipyard
in Astander, Spain, and local police turned violent 12 June. The employees
were protesting a decision to have the yard only repair vessels, not build
them. They tried to stop the Val de Loire (French-registry 4,110-dwt ferry
built in 1987, operated by Brittany Ferries) from docking. It was carrying
1,025 passengers from Plymouth, England. When police attempted to remove
the protesters, fighting erupted. More than a dozen were injured on each
side of the clash.

German, Chinese firms invest in Shanghai shipyard

Hansa Treuhand Schiffsbeteiligungs AG & Co. has take a 45 percent
stake in Edward Shipyard in Shanghai, China. The deal was made in conjunction
with the firm's Chinese partner, Zhonghua Shipyard.

Metro Machine employees reject offer

Unionized employees at the Norfolk, Va., operations of Metro Machine
Corp. have rejected an offer by the firm. Most were laid-off two months
ago, and Metro Machine offered to hire them back in exchange for an 11.5
percent cut in wages.

Aalborg Industrier buying Pipemasters

Aalborg Industrier, a unit of J. Lauritzen Holding Group, has signed
a letter of intent to buy Pipemasters Oy, based in Rauma, Finland. Pipemasters
has a turnover of 60 million Finnish marks/U.S.$12 million and has 74 employees.
It works as a subcontractor to shipyards and does pipefitting work on ships.

Halifax Shipyard workers, management in dispute

On 12 June, Halifax Shipyard Ltd. management told 60 office and technical
personnel not to report for work. The union said the move was an attempt
to break it as part of a continuing dispute between the two sides, while
the yard said the day was for discussion of a recent management offer.
Workers were told they would be paid until 1507, at which time the yard
would be in a "lockout" state. However, the yard later said it
would not enter into a lockout status.

Malta Drydocks offers compensation to relatives of fire victims

Malta Drydocks has offered 275,000 Maltese pounds/U.S.$713,000 in compensation
to victims of an explosion and fire in 1995. Nine people were killed and
several injured aboard the Um el Faroud (Libyan-registry 5,390-dwt tanker
built in 1969, operated by General National Maritime Transport).

Mitsui Engineering & Shipbuilding to divide container crane business

Mitsui Engineering & Shipbuilding Co. Ltd. has announced plans to
divide its container crane business with affiliates in Spain and the United
States by the end of 1998. The parent company will develop and design the
cranes and do some production. The Spanish firm will do some design but
will concentrate on production. The U.S. business will work in non-development

Two Japanese yards increasing capacity

Two Japanese shipyards have announced plans to expand their production
capacity. Kawasaki Heavy Industries Ltd. will resume use of berth No. 4
at its Kobe, Japan, facility by the summer of 1998. Ishikawajima Harima
Heavy Industries Ltd. has increased manufacturing at its No. 1 plant in
Tokyo, from 25,500 tons to 26,500 tons.

Cebu Shipyard & Engineering Works attains I.S.O. 9002

Cebu Shipyard & Engineering Works Inc. has become the first Philippine
shipyard to get I.S.O. 9002 status. The American Bureau of Shipping certified
the yard. The shipyard will shortly be renamed Keppel Cebu Shipyard &
Engineering Inc.

Euronav Luxembourg orders new V.L.C.C.s

Daewoo Heavy Industries Ltd. has received a U.S.$170 million order from
Euronav Luxembourg S.A. for two 300,000-dwt tankers.

Iranian line orders tankers from Daewoo Heavy Industries

National Iranian Tanker Co. has ordered five 158,000-dwt tankers from
Daewoo Heavy Industries Ltd. for U.S.$300 million. The first ship will
arrive within 27 months, with the four others to follow every 45 days after.
The tankers will transport oil produced by National Iranian Oil Co. to
Mediterranean ports.

Malaysian International Shipping in tanker order

Malaysian International Shipping Corp. Bhd. has ordered five 30,000-dwt
chemical tankers at a cost of U.S.$225 million from Hyundai Heavy Industries
Co. Ltd. Partial funding will come from a five-year, U.S.$150 million loan
facility by several foreign banks as part of the Labuan International Offshore
Financial Center. The banks include: Asahi Bank Ltd., Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi
Ltd., Chase Manhattan Bank, Fuji Bank Ltd., Industrial Bank of Japan and
Standard Chartered Offshore.

Halla Engineering & Heavy Industries to build two vessels for TCC

Halla Engineering & Heavy Industries Co. Ltd. will build two 170,000-dwt
ships for TCC Co. at its Samho facility. They will cost a total of U.S.$43.5
million and will be delivered in mid-1999.

Summer Wind to get new offshore vessels

Seatankers Management Co. Ltd. has ordered 10 offshore vessels for Summer
Wind Inc. to be used in the North Sea. The U.S.$70 million order will be
built by Kvaerner Vyborg for delivery in 1998 and 1999.

Ugland to order new car carrier

Ugland International P.L.C. will order a new car carrier at a cost of
34 million British pounds/U.S.$55 million from Tsuneishi Shipbuilding Co.
Ltd. It will carry 6,100 cars on 12 decks with delivery planned for May
1999. There are two options, which need to be exercised by this December,
for delivery in 2000.

Express Ferries to get new catamaran fast ferry

Kvaerner Fjellstrand A/S has received an order worth 170 million Norwegian
kroner/U.S.$24 million to build a catamaran fast ferry for Express Ferries.
The 60-meter/197-foot ferry will carry 430 passengers and 52 vehicles.
It will have two diesels with waterjets for a speed of 36 knots. The ferry
will operate between Helsinki, Finland, and Tallinn, Estonia, starting
in late April. Finnmarks Fylkes Rederi og Ruteselskap will manage the vessel.

Finnyards delivers the Hamlet to Scandlines

The Hamlet, a 23,000-gt double-ended ferry, has been delivered to Scandlines
by Finnyards Ltd. It will sail between Helsingor, Denmark, and Helsingborg,
Sweden. The 110-meter/361-foot ferry will carry 1,100 passengers and either
240 cars or 32 trucks and eight cars. It has four azimuthing thrusters
driven by four Wartsila 9L20 diesel engines.

Newport News Shipbuilding gets U.S.M.S.C. work

Newport News Shipbuilding Inc. will drydock and repair five Maersk Line
ro/ros chartered to the U.S. Military Sealift Command. The first will arrive
in mid-June and all will be completed by early 1998.

A&P Southampton to work on the Albatros

A&P Southampton Ltd. has received the contract to repair the Albatros
(24,803-gt, 6,815-dwt motor passenger ship built in 1957, owned by V Ships
and operated by Silver Line Ltd.). The ship was damaged 16 May in the Isles
of Scilly in the United Kingdom when it hit a submerged object following
a pilot boat out of St. Mary's. The Albatros' hull suffered a 60-meter/200-foot
gash and it returned to St. Mary's for an underwater inspection. The 504
German passengers aboard disembarked at 1200 18 May, while the 300 crewmembers
remained aboard. It had been on a two-week cruise out of Bremerhaven, Germany,
and was chartered by Phoenix Reisen. The ship arrived at the A&P Southampton
on 27 May for drydocking and inspection before a decision was made on repairs,
which could cost U.S.$1.6 million.

Mitsubishi announces ability to take a "virtual walk" in a
ship design

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd. has announced a ship design program
that allows for a "virtual walk" inside the vessel on a computer
screen. While previous systems have been able to show detailed plans, the
firm says its new system is the first to show what the interior of the
vessel will look like once completed, in three dimensions. The first application
of the system is with a 77,000-ton containership to be delivered to Nippon
Yusen Kaisha Ltd. in January.

Stratos Mobile Networks in partnership with Cable and Wireless BIMCOM

Stratos Mobile Networks and Cable and Wireless BIMCOM announced a venture
9 June that will provide C-Mail to the maritime industry. C-Mail is a messaging
service for communication between ships and shore facilities using INMARSAT-C.
Stratos Mobile Networks will offer coverage worldwide and 24-hour service.
A flat rate global tariff will be applied to all traffic and will charged
by the number of character blocks used in each message. BIMCOM C-Mail Manager
will also be offered. Stratos Mobile Networks has also introduced its Stratos
Connectivity Suite, a system of computer programs for Internet access by
ships at sea. Services are available through INMARSAT-A, B, C and M. --
Steve Schultz - Whitefish Bay, Wis., U.S.A. - sschultz@execpc.com

"When beholding the tranquil beauty and brilliancy of the ocean's
skin, one forgets the tiger heart that pants beneath it; and would not
willingly remember, that this velvet paw but conceals a remorseless fang"
- Herman Melville from "Moby-Dick; or, The White Whale," Chapter
114, Paragraph two


Four U.S. Coast Guard personnel missing after helicopter crash

Four U.S. Coast Guard personnel are missing after an HH-65A Dolphin
helicopter crashed into the Pacific Ocean at 2330 8 June while responding
to a distress call 104 kilometers/65 miles west of Cape Mendocino, Calif.
Conditions included 35 to 50 knot winds, eight-meter/26-foot seas and visibility
of 16 kilometers/10 miles. Part of aircraft 6549's tail was found at 0750
9 June about eight kilometers/five miles away. The missing are: Lt. Jeffrey
F. Crane, 35, of Marshfield, Mass.; Lt. j.g. Charles W. Thigpen, 26, of
Riverside, Calif.; Petty Officer 3rd Class Richard L. Hughes, 33, of Black
Canyon City, Ariz.; and Petty Officer 3rd Class James C. Caines, 26, of
Hinesville, Ga. The crew was from Coast Guard Air Station Humboldt Bay,
Calif. The Ezara II (Canadian-registry 11-meter/37-foot sailboat) later
sank. The five aboard, including owner Larry Murrell, 48, of Vancouver,
British Columbia, Canada, were rescued. They were taken to a hospital in
Eureka, Calif. The vessel lost its rudder as Murrell and his wife, Shirley
Minion, 43, were sailing to retirement in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. The Ezara
II was to call at San Francisco next. Also aboard were a cousin, a friend
and a former Royal British Navy officer that had been hired. Murrell and
Minion had been aboard the vessel for a year. Two anchors, and a third
dropped by the Coast Guard, were lost during initial rescue attempts. After
the vessel rolled, about 1.2 meters/four feet of water filled the Ezara
II. They boarded a liferaft and were rescued by the Coast Guard "Island"-class
Patrol Boat U.S.C.G.C. Edisto (WPB 1313). Also in the area was an HC-130H
Hercules from Coast Guard Air Station Sacramento, Calif. After the Dolphin
crashed, additional aircraft arrived from Air Stations Astoria, Ore., and
North Bend, Ore. The U.S.C.G.C. Sapelo (WPB 1314) also assisted, while
the Hamilton-class High-Endurance Cutter U.S.C.G.C. Boutwell (WHEC 719)
and the Balsam-class Seagoing Buoy Tender U.S.C.G.C. Buttonwood (WLB 306)
arrived the morning of 9 June. Later searches located a door, a helmet
in a bag, a search-and-rescue board that was bolted to the interior of
the fuselage, the top part of the tail rotor housing and several smaller
fuselage pieces. The search was suspended after 70,000-square-kilometers/27,000-square-miles
of ocean was searched.

Passenger evacuated from passenger ship in the Atlantic

A U.S. Coast Guard HH-60J Jayhawk was to have evacuated a passenger
from the Zenith (4,300-dwt, 204-meter/679-foot passengers ship built in
1992, operated by Celebrity Cruises Inc.) the afternoon of 8 June. The
78-year-old woman had internal bleeding and was to be flown to Norfolk
Sentara Hospital in Norfolk, Va., by a Jayhawk from Coast Guard Air Station
Elizabeth City, N.C. Two other aircraft - an HC-130H Hercules from Elizabeth
City and an HU-25A Falcon from Air Station Cape Cod, Mass. - were also
to be on the scene, 464 kilometers/290 miles east of Chesapeake Bay. The
Zenith was sailing from New York to Bermuda.

U.S. Coast Guard evacuates shooting victim, suspect arrested

The Lucky John (U.S.-registry fishing vessel) radioed U.S. Coast Guard
Group Galveston, Texas, on 2 June, reporting that a Vietnamese crewmember
had suffered a severe head wound. A Coast Guard HH-65A Dolphin helicopter
from Coast Guard Air Station Houston hoisted the man aboard about 83 kilometers/52
miles south of Cameron, La. While flying to South Cameron Hospital, the
helicopter crew discovered that the man had been shot by a crewmember of
the fishing vessel Gulf Challenger. Another Dolphin helicopter from Air
Station Houston located the Gulf Challenger, while a boarding party went
aboard from the "Point"-class Patrol Boat U.S.C.G.C. Point Baker
(WPB 82342). During the boarding, a crewmember confessed to the shooting
and was arrested.

Three injured in accident during drill in Florida

Three Chilean crewmembers of the containership Martrader (Antigua-registry)
were injured last week at Port Everglades, Fla., during an abandon ship
drill. As a lifeboat was being lowered, a wire snapped, sending one of
three people aboard into the water. The two remaining crewmembers were
trapped. Manuel Condado, Zeal Ganay and Regaldo Tavu were slightly injured
and were treated at Broward County General Hospital in Fort Lauderdale,
Fla. The ship arrived late 5 June from Venezuela and was to sail at 1200
6 June.

Italian ship fired on off Albania

An Albanian-registry vessel carrying 700 people fired on an Italian
Coast Guard vessel near Durres, Albania, on 11 June. The Italian ship returned
fire and forced the ship back to port. Those aboard denied anyone had fired
on the Italian vessel.

Dutch police stop drunken masters

Police in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, stopped and boarded a St. Vincent
and the Grenadines-registry vessel on 31 May after it was seen operating
erratically. The master, a Polish citizen, was found to be drunk. He was
prevented from operating the ship for 12 hours and was fined 3,000 Dutch
guilders/U.S.$1,500. The master of the Daniel was recently found to have
a blood alcohol content of 3.25 parts per million. This follows an earlier
incident in which another master of the same vessel was found to have a
content of 2.38 parts per million by police in Willemstad, the Netherlands.
GEFO, which owns the vessel, has taken action against them, and has fired
at least one. In the latest incident, the Daniel was carrying 1,000 tons
of light fuel.

Greek master arrested in Canada

Konstantinos Panagiotopoulos, 37, was taken into custody by the Royal
Canadian Mounted Police this week on suspicion of violating the Canadian
Immigration Act. He was arraigned 12 June in a provincial court on charges
of bringing 15 illegal migrants into the country aboard a ship between
1 May and 11 June.

Boarding on Miami River finds five stowaways

On 29 May, personnel of the U.S. Customs Service and U.S. Coast Guard
Group Miami boarded the Florida Seahorse in the Miami River. While illegal
narcotics were being sought, the group instead found five stowaways. Two
were deported and three minors were transferred to a detention center.
Two crewmembers with expired visas were also detained.

Six tons of hashish found at Piraeus, speedboat stopped

Police found six tons of hashish in a container at the Port of Piraeus,
Greece, on 9 June. Two people were arrested in connection with the find.
The container arrived on a vessel from Egypt on 2 May. It had been loaded
in Pakistan and was headed for Bulgaria. The container was not claimed
and papers said it was carrying towels and fabrics. On 11 June, the Greek
Coast Guard arrested an Albanian speedboat carrying 300 kilograms/660 pounds
of hashish near Igoumenitsa, Greece. The six-meter/20-foot boat, with an
outboard engine, opened fire on a Coast Guard vessel. After fire was returned,
those aboard the boat jumped overboard and swam to nearby rocks. A search
found the hashish, two Kalashikov rifles, ammunition and a hand-grenade.

U.S. Coast Guard seizes fishing vessel in the Bering Sea

The fishing vessel Cheong Yang Ho (South Korean-registry) was found
6 June fishing 3,380 meters/11,100 feet inside the U.S. exclusive economic
zone in the Bering Sea. A boarding team from the U.S. Coast Guard Hamilton-class
High-Endurance Cutter U.S.C.G.C. Sherman (WHEC 720) seized the vessel and
its catch and escorted the vessel to Kodiak, Alaska, where custody was
transferred to the U.S. Marshal's Service.

Paul Watson to be freed in the Netherlands

A Dutch court refused to extradite a Canadian citizen to Norway on 9
June in connection with anti-whaling protests. Paul Watson, director of
the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, will be freed on 20 June from a
jail in Haarlem, the Netherlands. He was arrested 3 April by Dutch police
acting on an INTERPOL warrant. In 1994, a Norwegian court convicted Watson
in absentia for anti-whaling protests and sentenced him to 120 days in
prison. He is also wanted on charges of ramming a Royal Norwegian Navy

United Kingdom opens first prison ship in over 100 years

Her Majesty's Prison Weare, the first prison ship operated by the United
Kingdom in over a century, opened 11 June. The ship is moored off Portland,
England, and will ease overcrowding. At first, 50 minimum-security, or
Category D, inmates will be held on the ship. The 30-meter/100-foot tall,
six-deck vessel was bought from New York. A 5 million British pound/U.S.$8
million refit will allow H.M.P. Weare to accomodate 400 prisoners and 150
personnel. Only 16 prisoners arrived on 11 June.

Court-martial of U.S. Coast Guard crewmember begins

The court-martial of Darrel Stirewalt began in New Orleans on 9 June.
A health services technician, second class, Stirewalt was charged with
one count of rape and sodomy, three counts of assault consummated by battery,
four counts of indecent assault, four counts of maltreatment and four counts
of adultery. Stirewalt, of Clemson, S.C., was a crewmember of the Balsam-class
Seagoing Buoy Tender U.S.C.G.C. Sweetgum (WLB 309), based in Mobile, Ala.
In January, several female crewmembers accused him of sexual assault. Stirewalt
has been confined at U.S. Naval Air Station Pensacola, Fla.


Sulpicio Lines in three vessel deal

Sulpicio Lines has bought three second-hand vessels that will sail between
the Philippine ports of Manila, Cebu and Mindanao. The 10,000-gt ships
were built in Japan and cost 1 billion Philippine pesos/U.S.$30.5 million,
which includes refits. The ships will be named Princess of the World, Princess
of the Ocean and Princess of the Carribean, and will be delivered in June,
August and September, respectively. Each is 10 to 12 years old.

Dutch frigate sold to Greece

The Royal Netherlands Navy lead ship of the HNLMS Kortenaer (F 807)-class
Frigate has been sold as part of a U.S.$50 million deal to the Greek Navy.


Two missing after barge capsizes off California

At 0955 10 June, the tug William Tindale reported that a barge carrying
sand had capsized 2.4 kilometers/1.5 miles north of Pinole Point, Calif.
Two people aboard were thrown overboard and are missing. Four U.S. Coast
Guard boats (two 12-meter/41-foot utility boats and two rigid-hulled inflatibles)
and a Coast Guard helicopter conducted search operations along with local
fire and police departments. Divers also arrived from the Contras Costa
Fire Department and Parker Diving and Salvage Services. A command post
was set-up at Pinole Point Park. Fred Divine Diving has been hired to salvage
the sunken barge, using Dutra Construction Co.'s crane barge No. 3 and
other equipment from Marson Construction & Engineering Co.

Romanian-registry ship sinks off South Africa

The Calarasi (Romanian-registry 3,493-gt, 4,800-dwt general cargo ship
built in 1974, operated by Navrom S.A.) lost engine power on 13 June at
31 degrees 39 minutes south, 29 degrees 42 minutes east. The location is
off South Africa. Weather conditions in the area worsened, with seas of
seven meters/23 feet. The ship subsequently sank, and the 12 crewmembers
boarded a liferaft. They were later rescued by a helicopter.

Bulk carrier gutted by fire

The bridge and accomodations area of the Rovinari (Romanian-registry
9,040-gt, 12,500-dwt bulk carrier built in 1971, operated by Pontica Srl)
were almost completely destroyed by a fire on 10 June. The fire began in
a passageway of the accomodations area and was extinguished 11 June.

Fire in holds of bulk carrier in Lobito

Smoke was reported coming from the No. 3 and No. 4 cargo holds aboard
the Patchara Naree (Thai-registry 11,013-gt, 18,845-dwt motor bulk carrier
built in 1977, operated by Great Circle Shipping Agency Ltd.) this week
while it as moored at Lobito, Angola, with aid cargo for Angola and Mombassa,
Kenya. The two holds carried bulk sorghum and maize.

Four barges sink on lower Mississippi River

While downbound 56 kilometers/35 miles north of Vicksburg, Miss., on
27 May, four barges being pushed by the tug Hortense B. Ingram broke loose
and sank. The four rock barges were part of a tow of 30. The Mississippi
River was closed in the area until the barges were located at mile marker

Allision takes bridge out of service

A construction barge rammed the Sawpit Creek Bridge near Nassau, Fla.,
on 30 May. Several pilings were damaged and the bridge was closed for about
two weeks, affecting traffic on Highway A1A.

Sadko runs aground in Uruguay

The Sadko (Maltese-registry 10,042-gt general cargo ship) ran aground
10 June in the Martin Garcia Channel in Uruguay. The ship was sailing from
Montevideo, Uruguay, to Concepcion del Uruguay.

Vessel grounds off Halifax

The Mar II ran aground the afternoon of 7 June in the Eastern Passage
near Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada. The vessel, owned by Murphy's On The
Water, was making a broad turn towards a dock, but strayed into shallow
waters and grounded on a sandbar. Among those aboard were 10 travel writers
from Sweden and two local representatives. The Mar II was sailing to Fisherman's
Cove and was refloated the same day. A ferry took the passengers aboard
the Mar II to their destination.

Panel appointed by German shipyard reports on Estonia sinking

A panel of German experts announced this week that the Estonia sank
due to poor maintenance, bad vehicle placement and as a result of sailing
too fast for the weather conditions. The ro/ro ferry sank 28 Sept., 1994,
in the Baltic Sea, killing as many as 1,049 people. The panel was set-up
by Bernard Meyer, managing director of Meyer Werft, which built the Estonia
in 1980. The group said the poor maintenance related to the bow visor and
ramp, its locking equipment and seals around it.


Shiro Takashima, J.H.T.A. chairman, dies at 83

Shiro Takashima, chairman of the Japan Harbor Transportation Association
died 29 May at age 83 of a ruptured aortal aneurysm. As chairman for some
two decades, Takashima, who also owned a stevedoring business, accumulated
substantial power among Japanese ports. In 1986, J.H.T.A introduced the
"prior consultation" system. The U.S. Federal Maritime Commission
has been holding talks with the association over opening ports to competition,
after the commission threatened to impose charges on ships of three Japanese
lines calling in the United States. It is not clear what course those talks
will now take.


Russian warship to visit Japan, first time in 103 years

A Russian Navy guided-missile destroyer will visit Japan later this
month, the first Russian naval ship to visit the country in 103 years.
The ship will arrive in Tokyo on 27 June and remain in port for four days.
The last call by a Russian warship was in 1894, when a vessel arrived for
the ceremony of Emperor Meiji's 25th wedding anniversary.

Archaeological finds in the Pacific

Philippine archaeologists and French divers have found granite stones
from a tomb, cannons and artifiacts in a shipwreck in the Spratly Islands.
Local fishermen reportedly told the group where to find the ship, on a
coral reef nine kilometers/six miles off Pag-asa Island. Also, about 5,000
Chinese and Thai porcelain artifacts from a 15th century Chinese junk have
be found off Palawan Province, the Philippines. The items include plates,
jars and bowls, and were found six kilometers/four miles off Calauit Island.

Attempt to cross Atlantic in helicopter ends in landing aboard tug

An attempt to cross the Atlantic Ocean in a helicopter was abandoned
7 June when the helicopter developed a fuel leak. Two French citizens,
Gerard David and Phillippe Boutry, were attempting to become the first
people to make the flight, but after an at-sea refuelling about halfway
across, the leak began. A weld between extra fuel tanks mounted in place
of passenger seats failed. About 0430, the helicopter landed on the tug
Abeille, which is headed for Gander, Newfoundland, Canada.

LHD 7 named

U.S. Secretary of the Navy John H. Dalton announced 10 June that the
seventh ship of the U.S. Navy's Wasp-class Helicopter/Dock Landing Ships
will be named the U.S.S. Iwo Jima (LHD 7).