- Transport on Line - hiltunen.htm


United States imposing charges on three Japanese lines

The U.S. Maritime Commission decided 26 Feb. to impose U.S.$100,000
in port charges against three Japanese shipping companies in response to
"unfavorable restrictive practices" at Japanese ports. The charges,
an amount that will be levied each time a vessel owned or operated by Kawasaki
Kisen Kaisha Ltd., Mitsui O.S.K. Lines Ltd. and Nippon Yusen K.K. calls
at U.S. port, will take effect 14 April. The charges are only against ships
that last called at a foreign port, not when ships of the three lines move
between U.S. ports. Containerships of the three call at U.S. ports about
34 times monthly, and the charges will total a combined five billion Japanese
yen/U.S.$41.3 million annually. The three lines have said they will not
raise rates to cover the charges. In announcing the decision, the F.M.C.
said that several years of talks with the Japan Harbor Transportation Association
had failed to change practices that discriminate against foreign-registry
vessels. Operating changes, such as when a ship will call at a Japanese
port, are not allowed unless granted by the association. There is also
a prior consultation system and pre-approvals between lines, labor unions
and the association. The commission also said the J.H.T.A. disrupts the
operations of detractors, extract unwarranted fees and impose restrictions.
The F.M.C. criticized licensing requirements for terminal operators and
stevedores. The commission announced that if Japan retaliates against U.S.
lines, the fees on Japanese carriers will increase proportionally. Japan
has stated that the fees may violate the Treaty of Friendship, Commerce
and Navigation of 1953, as well as accords related to the World Trade Organization.
Under the former treaty, Japanese and U.S. merchant vessels are to "be
accorded national treatment and most favored nation treatment," or
ships of the foreign country are to be given the same level of treatment
in the other country as that country's own vessels. On the other hand,
the United States could use the same treaty against the Japanese practices.

T.S.A. raising rates

The Transpacific Stabilization Agreement will raise tariffs and service
rates on 1 May on all shipments from Asia. Details are being worked out.

Hanjin Shipping takes stake in DSR-Senator

Hanjin Shipping Co. Ltd. formally took a majority share of DSR-Senator
Lines during a signing in Bremen, Germany, 25 Feb. While the firms will
remain independent, closer cooperation will be sought. By 1998, the two
will have 80 ships of 200,000-TEU capacity.

Brazil gets note from United States on recent shipping law

It has been announced that the United States sent Brazil a note on its
new shipping law, requesting changes. The United States is questioning
the cargo reservations, discounts agianst third-registry countries, the
closed trade in the Mercosur states and exclusion of cargoes generated
by Brazilian-registry carriers from import taxes.

P. & I. movements

Two members of American Steamship Owners Mutual have reportedly switched
their vessels to competitor protection and indemnity clubs. Keystone Shipping
Co. reportedly shifted 17 of its tankers from the American club to Steamship
Mutual, and Foss Maritime Co. reportedly transferred half its 250 vessels
to the U.K. Club. Two Keystone Shipping personnel were board members at
the American club. Perbadanam Nasional Shipping Line moved 12 ships from
the Newcastle club to the London and West of England clubs. West of England
also took five ships owned by Genel Denizcilik Nakliyati A.S. which were
formerly with the Liverpool & London Club. Vroon B.V. moved 20 ships
from the U.K. Club to Steamship Mutual and North of England. Oak Shipping
placed four bulk carriers with the Standard club. They were with the Liverpool
and London club and the Swedish Club. Gard won 15 ships owned by Novoship.
The vessels were formerly with the West of England. Gard lost six tankers
owned by Nord Jahre to Skuld.

Barbadian association formed

On 25 Feb., the Barbadian Shipowners' Association was formed by Carisbrooke
Shipping P.L.C., Desgagnes Shipping International Inc., Fednav Ltd., Secunda
Marine Services Ltd., Stirling Offshore Ltd. and Union Transport P.L.C.
The group has over 50 vessels in all of 250,000-gt. The new association
has applied for membership with the International Chamber of Shipping and
the International Shipping Federation.

Geepee Shipping and S.C.I. form bulk carrier venture

Geepee Shipping and Shipping Corp. of India Ltd. are forming a joint
venture to own and operate bulk carriers. Bulk Tranportation Co. will be
based in Singapore and have an initial capitalization of Singapore$10 million/U.S.$7
million. S.C.I. will invest U.S.$2.5 million in the venture.

Negros Navigation and Water Jet merge

Negros Naviation and Water Jet Shipping Corp. are merging to form what
will likely be the largest fast ferry operator in the Philippines. The
agreement will be signed 4 March, with the new firm equally owned. Water
Jet is owned by Mabuhay Holdings Corp., a division of Mulpha International
Bhd. and Sembawang Maritime Ltd. It serves Visayas and northern Mindanao
with two high-speed catamarans, with another two coming in April and May.
There will be 10 ferries in the new firm.

ColorSeaCat dissolved

ColorSeaCat, the joint venture of Color Line and Sea Containers Ltd.,
has been dissolved. The fast-ferry operation in Scandinavia operated catamarans
from Langesund, Norway, to Fedrikshavn, Denmark, and Fredrikshavn to Gothenburg,
Sweden. Service ended 31 Jan. Sea Containers will continue the latter service
with a new ferry in June, replacing another than will be sent to the Isle
of Man. Color Line, meanwhile, has secured a 1.8 billion Norwegian kroner/U.S.$268
million refinancing deal.

FEAB/FKAB, Lloyd's Register and Ramsgate fined in walkway collapse

A British court fined three businesses this week for a ferry walkway
collapse at the Port of Ramsgate, England, in September 1994 that killed
six people and injured seven. FEAB/FKAB, which built and installed the
structure, was fined 700,000 British pounds/U.S.$1.1 million. The walkway
collapsed when a supporting pin broke. Lloyd's Register was fined 500,000
pounds/U.S.$800,000, as the court ruled its inspectors did not properly
inspect welding on the walkway. The port itself was fined 200,000 pounds/U.S.$300,000.

B.P., Overseas Shipholding to work together

British Petroleum P.L.C. and Overseas Shipholding Group Inc. have reportedly
agreed to jointly design, build and operate tankers. They will replace
ships now carrying crude oil from Alaska.

Chinese and German firms to design containerships together

ABH Ingenieur-Technik and the Chinese Shanghai Merchant Design and Research
Institute have agreed to cooperate on designing containerships. Two or
three ships or ship types will be designed annually, with the work costing
100,000 German marks/U.S.$62,500 per ship. The first design under the agreement
is underway for a 405-TEU capacity vessel.

Trucking company files lawsuit against Maersk

McKenna Trucking Co. filed a federal antitrust lawsuit 14 Feb. in the
U.S. District Court for New Jersey against Maersk Inc. It is seeking U.S.$5.1
million. McKenna Trucking says that Maersk is improperly requiring customers
needing drayage to use the trucks of a Maersk subsidiary. In the New York/New
Jersey area, McKenna Trucking claims that Maersk is using Bridge Terminal
Transport Inc. Customers alledgely are charged full rates, but some of
the payment is rebated from the trucking firm to Maersk. McKenna Trucking
had hauled containers for Maersk from 1988 to early 1996.

V Ships gets crew management contract from Stolt Parcel Tankers

Stolt Parcel Tankers Inc. has awarded a crew management contract for
its new chemical tankers to V Ships Ship Management SAM. Industri Navali
Meccaniche Affini S.p.A. is building the 5,400 cubic meter/7,000-cubic
yard vessels for delivery later this year and early next. They will be
used in the Inter-European Service with Italian officers and Filipino crewmembers.
Each officer will serve on another Stolt ship first to become familiarized
with the firm's operations.

Bunkerers merge

The largest Norwegian bunkerer has been formed in the merger of Scandinavian
Bunkering and Seabunker. The new Scandinavian Bunkering A/S is owned by
Bunker Holdings A/S. It is based in Tonsberg.

Fasy Seaways serving three areas

Fasy Seaways Inc. has started serving Baltimore, Philadelphia and New
York/New Jersey. The agency specializes in tramp tanker and liner services.
The firm started in November.

T.W.R.A. raising United States to Singapore fee

The Transpacific Westbound Rate Agreement has announced it will start
charging more for documentation fees on cargoes from the United States
to Singapore. As of 15 March, it will increase from U.S.$20 to U.S.$30
for direct and transshipment cargoes.

Carnival, Hyundai Merchant Marine announce venture name

Carnival Corp. and Hyundai Merchant Marine Co. Ltd. have named their
joint venture to develop cruises Carnival Cruises Asia.

Seateam Technology listed on Oslo exchange

Shares of Seateam Technology will be listed on the Oslo Stock Exchange's
small and medium business sector. The company was formed by the merger
of Arcade Offshore and DSND Survey.


First "direct" sailing from China to Taiwan

The Lien Fung (Hong Kong-owned containership) has made the first "direct"
passage from China to Taiwan via Hong Kong. The ship arrived at Kaohsiung,
Taiwan, on 23 Feb. from Xiamen, Fujian Province, China. It called at Hong
Kong instead of sailing from one port to the other. It is the first such
quasi-direct transit since 1949.

Maersk starting container service to eastern Africa

Maersk Line is adding a new service to eastern Africa. Calls will be
every two weeks with two 400-TEU capacity ships, sailing between Jebel
Ali, the United Arab Emirates; Dar es Salaam, Tanzania; Mombasa, Kenya;
and Colombo, Sri Lanka. The first sailing from Jebel Ali is 5 April.

Croatia Line increasing service to Indian subcontinent

Croatia Line, in a joint container service with Compagnie Maritime d'Affretement,
is increasing service between the U.S. east coast and the Indian subcontinent.
Instead of twice a month, calls will be once every 10 days. Calls are at
New York/New Jersey; Baltimore; Norfolk, Va.; Savannah, Ga.; Livorno, Italy;
Genoa, Italy; Fos, France; Valencia, Spain; and Lisbon, Portugal. Containers
for India and Pakistan are transshipped at Damietta, Egypt, for transport
through the Suez Canal. The service is marketed as the American-Mediterranean-Middle
East Express.

UniFeeder upgrading route

UniFeeder is upgrading service between Denmark, Sweden and the United
Kingdom. Two 340-TEU to 370-TEU containerships will call at Felixstowe,
England; Gothenburg, Sweden; and Aarhus, Denmark, twice a week. Copenhagen,
Denmark, and Helsingborg, Sweden, are also on the route, as are Rotterdam,
the Netherlands, and Bremerhaven, Germany.

Dole Ocean Liner Express starting new weekly service

Dole Ocean Liner Express has announced a new weekly service calling
at Port Everglades, Fla.; Puerto Barrios, Guatemala, and Puerto Cortes,
Honduras. It will begin 6 March. The Tropical Wind (Vanuatu-registry 9,965-dwt,
190-FEU capacity containership built in 1983, operated by Yano Kaiun) will
leave Port Everglades on Thursdays, call at Puerto Barrios on Sundays and
Puerto Cortes on Mondays.

New passenger route from Iran to the United Arab Emirates

A new passenger service began 24 Feb. between Bandar Lengeh, Iran, and
Dubai, the United Arab Emirates. The weekly service will be operated by
a ship capable of carrying 234 passengers, 24 tons of cargo and 10 vehicles.

Mitsui O.S.K. to offer second around-the-world cruise

Mitsui O.S.K. Passenger Line Ltd. announced 24 Feb. it will have a second
around-the-world cruise in 1999. On 25 Feb., the firm began accepting a
maximum of 332 people for 175 cabins aboard the Nippon Maru (21,903-gt,
4,840-dwt passenger ship built in 1990, operated by Mitsui O.S.K.). In
1998, the first such cruise will be held. It has sold out and many people
have been turned down. For the 1999 cruise, the ship will sail 20 April
to 20 July. It will leave Japan, sail through the Suez Canal, call at Istanbul,
Turkey; Marseilles, France; Casablanca, Morocco; South America; transit
the Panama Canal to the U.S. west coast; and call at Alaska before returning
to Japan. It will cost an adult between 3.2 million Japanese yen/U.S.$27,000
and 10 million yen/U.S.$83,000 if applications are submitted by the end
of July 1998.

More on Australia - Indonesia service

More information has become available on the new service between Northern
Territory, Australia, and East Nusa Tenggara Province, Indonesia. Calls
will be at Kupang, Benon and Surabaya in Indonesia and Darwin in Australia.
Calls will be made twice a month starting in March.

DFO takes ferry out of service

Deutsche Fahrgesellschaft Ostsee m.b.H. has removed the "jumbo"
ferry Mecklenburg-Vorpommern (German-registry) from service due to maneuvering
problems. The ship was delivered by Schichau Seebeckwerft A.G. eight weeks
ago. The difficulty is in moving stern-first into a berth in Trelleborg,
Sweden, in winds of Beaufort Force 7 or more (28 to 33 knots or more).
Last week, the ship could not dock and returned to Rostock, Germany.


French ports hit by strikes

Several French ports curtailed operations from 17 Feb. to 19 Feb. after
dockworkers seeking higher wages honored a call to strike by labor union
CGT. Among the port affected were Boulogne, Calais, Cherbourg, Le Havre
and Marseilles-Fos. A 2.5 percent increase to the minimum wage is being

New container terminal to be built in Indonesia

Hutchison International Port Holdings Ltd. announced 27 Feb. it has
signed a contract with PT Bina Jasa Hantarindo and PT Pelabuhan Indonesia
II to build and operate a container terminal at Bojonegara, Indonesia.
The terminal will be operational by early 1998. In the first phase, two
container berths and a feeder quay totaling almost 850 meters/2,800 feet
will be built. There will be a yard of 35 hectares/85 acres and the terminal
will handle 2.4 million TEUs annually when fully operational. When completed,
there will be six berths with 2,000 meters/7,000 feet of berth space and
20 cranes. The terminal will be dredged to a minimum of 15 meters/49 feet.

Mozambican port to be refurbished for coal export

The Mozambican government has announced a plan to revitalize the coal
mines in Moatize. The first phase would be a U.S.$30 million project to
restore the Port of Nacala in Nampula Province. Trains would bring coal
to the port for export, with the facilities handling 1,000 tons per hour.
An industrial center would be formed to include an oil terminal and a free
trade zone.

Mumbai Port Trust to modernize, expand

Mumbai Port Trust in India is planning a nine billion Indian rupee/U.S.$250
million expansion and modernization that will include privatizing some
facilities. Private investment is being sought to build an offshore berth
at Pir Pau for two billion rupees/U.S.$55 million on a build, operate and
transfer arrangement. It would handle coal and liquid bulk cargoes. The
underwater pipeline at Pir Pau will be replaced and a 2.5 billion rupee/U.S.$70
million oil terminal will be built. Chemical handling capabilities will
be upgraded, in part by funding through the Asian Development Bank. Finally,
a radar vessel traffic system will enter service at Mumbai next month.

Warehouse strike at Santos

Warehouse workers at the Port of Santos, Brazil, struck from 24 Feb.
to 26 Feb. Cargo moving in and out of the port was stopped, but liner services
were not affected.

Greek port blocked

Crews of fishing vessels blocked the Port of Thessaloniki, Greece, on
26 Feb. to protest government plans to tax fuel. The Ariadne (2,287-dwt
passenger ferry built in 1967, operated by Minoan Lines Shipping S.A.)
was prevented from docking at the port and anchored at Pier 6. Fishing
vessels anchored at the eastern entrance to the port. The protest ended
the morning of 27 Feb. after a written guarantee from Greek Finance Undersecretary
George Drys that taxes paid will be refunded within a few days of purchasing

Conateco upgrading Pusan container terminal

Conateco, the operator of the container terminal at the Port of Pusan,
South Korea, has announced plans to upgrade the facility. Work has started
on a new concrete storage area and four cranes will be upgraded from 45
tons to 60 tons. A 100-ton Liber mobile crane has been ordered. Also, the
three berths of 550 meters/1,800 feet total will be dredged from a depth
of 11.5 meters/37.7 feet to 13.5 meters/44.3 feet.

Malaysian port plans upgrades

Johor Port Bhd. at Kuala Lampur, Malaysia, is planning to spend Malaysian$125
million to upgrade its equipment and computer systems. It will then handle
30 million tons annually.

Another bunkerer in Port Klang

A fourth bunkering operation has started at Port Klang, Malaysia. Straits
Energy Enterprise Sdn. Bhd. began operations last week. A fifth, KMP Coastal
Oil Pte. Ltd., will begin operations in late April. It is a joint venture
with M. Zain Wakil Penghantaran Sdn. Bhd.'s Fasa Presti Sdn. Bhd., which
has a 60 percent stake.


E.C. grants Greek shipbuilding aid extension

The European Commission has approved an extension of shipbuilding aid
by Greece until 31 Dec., with some amendments. Aid will be available to
shipowners regardless of their nationality, as long as they order ships
in Greek shipyards. In addition, owners can split orders into several contracts.
For large ships, shipbuilding aid will not be more than nine percent of
the cost, and for ships costing less than 10 million E.C.U.s/U.S.$11.62
million, not more than 4.5 percent.

Electric Boat and Newport News to jointly build New Attack Submarine

General Dynamics Corp.'s Marine Division/Electric Boat Corp. and Newport
News Shipbuilding Co. announced 25 Feb. they will team up to jointly build
the U.S. Navy's New Attack Submarine (NSSN). They will be equal partners
in the construction of the first four submarines, a deal that requires
changing present law. The U.S. National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal
Year 1997 directs independent submarine construction. Electric Boat will
do final assembly, testing, outfitting and delivery of the first and third
submarines. For all four submarines, Electric Boat will construct the command
and control and engine room modules and seven other sections as the lead
design yard. Newport News will perform final assembly, testing, outfitting
and delivery of the second and fourth submarines. For all four, Newport
News will build the sail, the habitability and auxiliary machinery room
modules and six other sections.

Advisory group formed to look at U.S. warship building ability

U.S. Secretary of Defense William S. Cohen formed a Program Management
Advisory Group on 25 Feb. to inspect operations at the two shipyards building
the U.S. Navy's Arleigh Burke-class Guided-Missile Destroyers: Litton Industries'
Ingalls Shipbuilding Inc. and Newport News Shipbuilding Co. The group of
U.S. Department of Defense and Navy personnel is reviewing a multi-year
plan to buy 12 destroyers, which were authorized under the U.S. National
Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 1997. It is also looking at future
Navy surface combatant plans. The goal is to provide options and recommendations
for "a long-term, integrated approach to the surface combatant ship
industrial base." Results will be announced in March. The advisory
group is chaired by Vice Adm. George Sterner, commander of the U.S. Naval
Sea Systems Command. The other 11 members are from the offices of the U.S.
Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition and Technology; U.S. Assistant
Secretary of the Navy for Research, Development and Acquisition; U.S. Program
Executive Officer for Surface Combatants and Aegis; and the Naval Sea Systems

Designs of Bremer Vulkan to be marketed

Jobst Wellensiek, who is overseeing the bankruptcy of Bremer Vulkan
Verbund A.G., and senior managers will form a new company to market the
shipyard's designs and building ability. The firm, to be formed by August,
will either be created by a management buy-out or in cooperation with another
firm. Initially, there would be 10 employees. Most of the designs would
be for containerships.

New Indian shipbreaking facility planned

The Steel Re-rolling Mills Association of India plans to build a shipbreaking
yard at the Taratola Jheel area of the Calcutta Port Trust. It is in the
Budge Budge district of West Bengal. The area can accomodate as many as
20 shipbreaking berths.

Malta Drydocks employees protest during council election

In voting on 19 Feb. for a workers' council, many employees of Malta
Drydocks invalidated their ballots. The Maltese government recently made
changes to the council. Instead of nine representatives from the yard,
the chairman and four members are appointed by the government and the rest
are chosen by the workers in an election. In addition, the council stands
for four years instead of two. During the voting, 84 percent of 3,359 people
were eligable. Of those, 2,832 cast votes and of those, 1,245, or 44 percent,
were purposely invalidated in protest of the council change. Some 160 did
not collect their votes and 365 did not vote.

Clarke Chapman buys Kocks Krane

Clarke Chapman Ltd. has bought Kocks Krane from Bremer Vulkan Verbund
A.G. It manufactures harbor cranes with 180 employees at Bremen and Wilhelmshaven,
Germany. As of 1 April, when Clarke Chapman takes over, only 50 employees
will be kept.

Van Diepen building two ships for Wagenborg

Van Diepen has announced it will build two 9,000-dwt multipurpose ships
for Wagenborg Shipping B.V. They will be delivered in 1998 and 1999.

Hibernia begins tow

The 37,000-ton petroleum production platform Hibernia left Bull Arm,
Newfoundland, Canada, on 27 Feb. aboard a series of barges towed by five
tugs. It will be taken 1.5 kilometers/0.93 miles to its 110-meter/360-foot
gravity base. After the platform and base are connected, over about two
months, the structure will be taken to its permanent location, 315 kilometers/195
miles southeast of St. John's. The platform will be at the field by June.

Alabama Shipyard begins design of COSCO containerships

Design work has begun at Alabama Shipyard Inc. on four 1,432-TEU containerships
for China Ocean Shipping Co. There will be five cargo holds in the 23,850-dwt
ships, with below-decks accomodating 522 containers and a weatherdeck provision
for 835 containers, as well as slots for 135 refrigerated containers. The
superstructure will be over the machinery space behind the No. 4 hold,
with the stern having the shallow No. 5 hold and associated deck stowage
positions. There will be a crew of 25. Propulsion will come from a 16,000
brake horsepower two-stroke engine and a fixed-pitch propeller. The ships
will be capable of 19.1 knots at 14,400 bhp. Range will be 42,900 kilometers/26,800
miles. Dimensions include 182.90 meters/600.07 feet long overall, 172 meters/564
feet between perpendiculars, 27.60-meter/90.55-foot beam and a draft of
10.10 meters/33.14 feet. The ships will be built to American Bureau of
Shipping class requirements. Construction of the first should begin in
the fourth quarter with delivery in the first quarter of 1999. The order
has been granted U.S.$138 million under the Title XI program, and the shipyard
will employ 600 people with 1,800 in the supply industries.

Maersk Curlew progress

The conversion of the Maersk Curlew (99,800-dwt tanker) to a floating
production, storage and offloading vessel continues. On 26 Feb., the ship
left Tyne Tees Dockyard Ltd., where underwater and hull work was performed.
Earlier, it had been worked on at A&P Tyne Ltd. During the 30 million
British pound/U.S.$48 million project, a turret mooring moonpool was added,
the main deck was strengthened and support stools for process modules were
added. Some 1,700 tons of steel was used. Amec will now complete the work.
It will be used in the Curlew field of Royal Dutch/Shell Group in the North

Two Canadian maritime coastal defense vessels reach milestones

Two maritime coastal defense vessels for the Canadian Maritime Command
recently reached milestones at Halifax-Dartmouth Industries in Halifax,
Nova Scotia, Canada. On 22 Feb., the keel of the MCDV 707, which will be
named Goose Bay, was laid. The ship is expected to be launched in October.
The Whitehorse (MCDV 705) was launched 24 Feb., having been laid down 26
July. MCDV 705 will be homeported at Esquimalt, British Columbia, and the
MCDV 707 at Halifax.

Iranian line takes delivery of new vessel

Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines took delivery of a 21,000-dwt
multipurpose vessel on 26 Feb. It was built in China.

Kvaerner Masa-Azipod to supply propulsion for Royal Carribean ships

Kvaerner Maza-Azipod has won a contract to supply propulsion systems
for the world's two largest passenger ships. The are being built by Kvaerner
Masa-Yards Inc. for Royal Carribean Cruises Ltd. -- 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


Lube oil spills into Houston Ship Channel during transfer

About 450 barrels of lubrication oil spilled into the Houston Ship Channel
on 23 Feb. while being transferred from Exxon Corp.'s refinery in Baytown,
Texas, to the Oriental Amethyst (Panamanian-registry 10,000-dwt, 109-meter/357-foot
tanker built in 1996; owned by Sietemar S.A. and operated by Daitoh Trading
Co.). About 200 barrels have been recovered. The oil spilled when two cargo
tanks aboard the tanker overflowed. About 3,000 meters/10,000 feet of containment
boom was put in place to contain the spill.

St. Lawrence Seaway opening 2 April

It is hoped to open the St. Lawrence Seaway on 2 April. However, there
may be restrictions. Heavy precipitation since October has caused high
water levels in Lake Ontario. If the water levels are still high 2 April,
navigation will be restricted to daylight only.

U.S. Coast Guard evacuates crewmembers from two vessels

A U.S. Coast Guard 12-meter/41-foot utility boat from Coast Guard Station
Atlanic City, N.J., transported an injured crewmember from a vessel 16
kilometers/10 miles southeast of Atlanic City on 11 Feb. Edwin Squires,
25, was hit in the face with a scraper while removing ice from the tug
Richmond Dream. The utility boat was to take Squires to the station and
then Atlantic City Medical Center. A Coast Guard HH-60J Jayhawk from Coast
Guard Air Station Elizabeth City, N.C., evacuated a 33-year-old man from
the Vega on 20 Feb., about 320 kilometers/200 miles southeast of Cape Hatteras.
The man fell, injuring his shoulder and neck. With an HH-130H Hercules
for support, the helicopter took the man to Norfolk Sentara Hospital.

Cocaine seized from container in Spain

Spanish police seized 308 kilograms/678 pounds of cocaine on 25 Feb.
at Bilbao. It was found in a container, one of 178, unloaded from the Cap
Corrientes (Liberian-registry 34,680-dwt containership built in 1984, operated
by Hamburg-Sud). It was unloaded from the ship 22 Feb. Two people have
been arrested. The ship sailed from Valparaiso, Chile, at the beginning
of the month and called at several ports in Central and South America.

Cracks found in tank aboard the Overseas Chicago at Valdez

While loading crude oil at 1515 25 Feb., a sheen was found in the water
near a cargo tank of the Overseas Chicago (U.S.-registry 93,565-dwt tanker
built in 1977, operated by Maritime Overseas Corp.) at the Alyeska Terminal
in Valdez, Alaska. The ship is on charter to British Petroleum P.L.C. Loading
was stopped and oil in the tank was transferred to another tank. Less than
half a cup of oil was spilled, but it could have been larger. Two hull
cracks, one 10 centimeters/four inches long and one 15 centimeters/six
inches long, were found in the No. 2 starboard tank. The cracks were temporarily
repaired and the ship sailed with the tank empty. After unloading in the
continental United States, permanent repairs will be made.

Tokio Express update

A total of 62 containers were lost overboard from the Tokio Express
(Singaporean-registry 2,984-TEU capacity, 47,733-dwt containership built
in 1973, owned and operated by Hapag-Lloyd A.G.) off Land's End, England,
on 13 Feb. during bad weather. At one point, the ship rolled 60 degrees.
The ship was sailing with about 2,000 containers from Rotterdam, the Netherlands,
to Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada. After the containers were lost, the ship
anchored off Cowes for an inspection before docking in at Berth 106 in
Southampton. A floating crane unloaded the rest of the containers from
the ship, as some were about to fall overboard. The ship sustained damage
to railings and a hatch cover, and is being repaired at A&P Southampton
Ltd. While three containers have been recovered, and another two spotted,
the rest are believed to have sunk in water 80 meters/260 feet to 90 meters/300
feet deep. Among the containers were two loaded with cigarette lighters
and liquid plastic. The ship has insured liability with Britannia Steam
Ship Insurance Association Ltd.

Bomb threat against Washington State ferries

A bomb threat was made against Washington State ferries on 14 Feb. sailing
between Mukilteo and Clinton. After passengers were evacuated, a U.S. Navy
Explosive Ordnance Disposal Team searched several vessels. Nothing was
found and the services resumed two hours later.

U.S. Coast Guard to hold two meetings on Puget Sound in Seattle

The U.S. Department of Transportation's Volpe National Transportation
Systems Center is reviewing marine safety in and around Puget Sound, with
an emphasis on transporting petroleum. The Additional Hazards Study will
assess the threat of major oil spills by tankers in Puget Sound, the Straits
of Juan de Fuca and the Olympic Coast National Marine Sanctuary. Two public
workshops will be held 6 March to gather information for the study. Both
will be from 0830 to 1230 and from 1730 to 2130 at Cavanaugh's Inn on Fifth
Avenue in Seattle. Comments are also being accepted via a public docket
until 14 March. Two unbound copies suitable for copying and electronic
filing can be sent, and should be marked CGD 97-003 on the top of the first
page. They can be sent to Public Docket, Room 3406, U.S. Coast Guard Headquarters,
2100 Second Street SW, Washington, D.C., 20593-0001. Or send it to fldr-he@comdt.uscg.mil.
For more information, contact Lt. Duane Boniface at fldr-he@comdt.uscg.mil
or 202-267-0178.

First-time sailor course at the Great Lakes Maritime Academy

Member firms of the Lake Carriers' Association are sponsoring a course
for first-time sailors at the Great Lakes Maritime Academy in Traverse
City, Mich., from 1 June to 7 June. The course is meant to teach basic
skills to aid first-time sailors to adjust quickly to shipboard work and
responsibilities in the deck, engine and galley areas. With the costs underwriten
by the sponors, tuition is U.S.$300 per student. This also includes a physical
and drug screening as well as room and board. The course is limited to
50 students. Contact the academy at jurokos@nmc.edu.


Celebrity Cruises sells the Meridian to a new line

In a deal disclosed 27 Feb., Fourth Transoceanic Shipping Co., a subsidiary
of Celebrity Cruises Inc., will sell the Meridian (9,632-dwt, 1,400-passenger
ship built in 1963) to Metro Holdings of Singapore for U.S.$62.15 million.
Metro Holdings will take delivery in October and begin a passenger cruise
line in the Far East.

Festival Cruises names new ship

Festival Cruises will name its new ship Flamenco. The former Southern
Cross (17,042-gt, 2,352-dwt passenger ship built in 1972) was bought from
Black Sea Shipping Co. two months ago. It will retain the name Southern
Cross until refurbishment starts in Greece in November. The 800-passenger
ship will enter service in 1998.


Three multipurpose tweendeckers - the CMB Ebony (Hong Kong-registry
17,180-gt, 21,618-dwt, 799-TEU containership built in 1977 by Mitsubishi
Heavy Industries Ltd., formerly the Melampus); the DSR Senator (Liberian-registry
16,491-gt, 24,815-dwt, 626-TEU containership built in 1977 by Mitsubishi,
formerly the CMB Splendour, the Eastern Splendour and the Merry Viking)
and the Woermann Expert (Hong Kong-registry 17,146-gt, 21,181-dwt, 773-TEU
containership built in 1977 by Mitsubishi, formerly the CMB Esprit, the
Apapa Palm, the Menestheus, the Lloyd Parana, the Menesheus, the Barber
Menestheus and the Menestheus) - were sold together for U.S.$14.5 million
and will be chartered back to Bocimar N.V. for three years at a daily rate
of U.S.$8,000 to U.S.$8,200. The CMB Ebony and the Woermann Expert were
operated by CMB Transport S.A., and the DSR Senator was operated by Unicom
Management Services Ltd.

Bulk carriers

The Bunga Kesidang (Malaysian-registry 30,098-gt, 65,960-dwt bulk carrier
built in 1982 by Namura Shipbuilding Co. Ltd.) has reportedly been bought
by Tsatsakis Shipping for U.S.$9.5 million. It was operated by Malaysian
International Shipping Corp. Bhd. The Fir Grove (17,061-gt, 27,934-dwt
bulk carrier built in 1989 by Shin Karushima Dockyard Co. Ltd.) has been
sold to German interests for U.S.$12.5 million. The Ocean King (13,586-gt,
22,194-dwt bulk carrier built in 1981 by K.K. Uwajima Zosensho) has been
sold at auction in Cape Town, South Africa, for U.S.$3.5 million. The ship
had been named Global Access, Fortune Hunter, Fortune C, Golden Runner
and Eastsun Loyal. It was operated by Marine Engineering Corp. The New
Moon (12,876-gt, 21,380-dwt bulk carrier built in 1981 by Shin Yamamoto
Zosensho K.K.) has been sold to Malaysian buyers for U.S.$5.75 million.
It had been the New Mail, and was operated by European Navigation Inc.
The Comity (Panamanian-registry 7,641-gt, 13,286-dwt bulk carrier built
in 1983 by K.K. Taihei Kogyo) has gone to Turkey for U.S.$5 million. It
had been known as the Qunicy and the Monte Rosa and was operated by Wallem
Shipmanagement Ltd. The Sea Dian (Filipino-registry bulk carrier built
in 1985) has been sold to Taiwanese interests for U.S.$7.6 million to U.S.$7.85
million. Harvest Shipping Ltd. has paid U.S.$5.5 million for the Pacific
Way (bulk carrier built in 1976). The Ocean Centurion (Cypriot-registry
70,283-gt, 130,370-dwt bulk carrier built in 1979 by Gotaverken Arendal
A.B., converted to ore/bulk/oil carrier in 1992) was sold to Tsakirogli
for U.S.$5.7 million. It was operated by EDI Marine Carriers Ltd. and may
be for Continental Marine. The ship carried the names Star Delaware, Texaco
Delaware, California Getty and Norrland.


The Mar Caterina (Spanish-registry 11,153-gt, 14,534-dwt tanker built
in 1981 by Astilleros Espanoles S.A.) has been sold to a U.S. firm for
U.S.$5 million. It was the Astorga and the Caterina, and in addition to
SERS and inert gas systems, can pump 1,800 tons per hour. It had been carrying
bitumen, operated by W.W. Marpetrol S.A.

Offshore and supply

Oceaneering has bought the offshore support vessel Rambo (56.4 meters/185
feet long, 14-meter/45-foot beam) for operations in the Gulf of Mexico.
It will be renamed Ocean Project and will receive another 25 to 40-ton
capacity deck crane, a 25-ton "A"-frame crane on the stern, dynamic
positioning equipment and a four-point mooring system. The vessel will
be in service by April. The Java Sun, a 1,169-dwt anchor handling and supply
vessel built in 1976 with 7,000 brake horsepower, has been bought by a
Norwegian firm for U.S.$2 million from Jaya Offshore Pte. Ltd.


The New Brooklyn (Panamanian-registry 110,499-gt, 229,727-dwt very large
crude carrier with steam turbines, built in 1973 by Seatrain Shipbuilding
Corp.) has been sold for scrapping in Bangladesh at U.S.$178 per light
deadweight ton. It has an inert has system and was formerly the Brooklyn.
The ship was operated by International Oil Tanking Co. Ltd. The Indomitable
(39,219-gt, 77,996-dwt bulk carrier built in 1972 by Mitsui Shipbuilding
and Engineering Co. Ltd.), of 15,986-ldt, was sold for scrapping at U.S.$165
per ldt. The ship was formerly the Pankar Indomitable and the Konkar Indomitable.
The ship was operated by Pankar Maritime S.A.


Canada reports on 1996 casualties

The Canadian Transportation Safety Board reported this week there were
211 maritime incidents in 1996, compared to 235 in 1995. Five people were
killed, compared to nine in 1995. Also, 25 people were injured. Twenty-seven
were injured in 1995. No vessels over 300-gt were lost last year, down
from four the year before. There were 64 incidents of vessels hitting objects
in 1996, and there were 92 incidents in 1995. Of the 64, 11 were collisions
and there were six capsizings. These numbers were the same in 1995. In
the only reported increase, there were 32 explosions and fires in 1996,
up from 19 in 1995.

Ship loaded with gravel sinks off Japan

The Kinei Maru No. 18 (Japanese-registry 999-gt, 3,063-dwt dry cargo
ship built in 1985, operated by Miho Kaiun) sank off Hirado, Nagasaki Prefecture,
Japan, on 23 Feb. All five crewmembers were rescued after boarding a liferaft
and reaching shore. The ship was carrying 1,450 cubic meters/1,885 cubic
yards of gravel, 550,000 liters/143,000 gallons of fuel and 30,000 liters/7,800
gallons of lubricating oil. The Japanese Maritime Safety Agency set-up
a containment boom in case the fuel and oil spilled. The Kinei Maru No.
18 reportedly began taking on water 40 minutes before it sank in good weather.
The ship was sailing from Iki Island, Nagasaki Prefecture, to Amakusa,
Kumamoto Prefecture.

Tug sinks after fire

The Rig (Italian-registry 522-gt tug built in 1976, operated by Ocean
Srl) sank 24 Feb. at 12 degrees 36 minutes north, 44 degrees 43 minutes
east, in the Gulf of Aden. It was taken in tow by the Giada D (Panamanian-registry
10,000-dwt tanker built in 1996, operated by Ar Co In Srl) after a fire.
The crew was rescued and one person was hospitalized.

Tug burns in the Delaware River

The tug Reedy Point (U.S.-registry) suffered a fire 13 Feb. in the Delaware
River near Pea Patch Island, N.J. After sending a distress call, the four
crew abandoned the tug and boarded the barge Peqko II. They were rescued
by a Delware City rescue boat and were taken to a local hospital. After
the fire was contained by local fire and rescue vessels, the U.S. Coast
Guard lead vessel of the U.S.C.G.C. Capstan (WYTL 65601)-class Small Harbor
Tug and the Coast Guard 12-meter/41-foot utility boat CG-41311, the Reedy
Point was towed by the tug Patricia Moran to the Wilmington Marine Terminal
in Delaware.

Twenty-five abandon vessel in Pacific after fire

The Avatapu (Cook Islands-registry 36.2-meter/119-foot vessel built
in 1968) suffered an engine room fire 2223 21 Feb. at 17 degrees 22 minutes
south, 162 degrees 59 minutes west. The ship was abandoned 320 kilometers/200
miles from the Cook Islands. All 25 passengers and crew abandoned the ship
and spent 30 hours in liferafts before being rescued by a Fijian-registry
vessel 434 kilometers/269 miles northwest of Rarotonga, Cook Islands.

V.L.C.C. and bulk carrier collide at Fos

The Once (Kerguelen Islands-registry 269,919-dwt very large crude carrier
built in 1976, operated by Euronav Luxembourg S.A.) collided 25 Feb. near
Fos, France, with the Amber (Singaporean-registry bulk carrier). The Once
had just left Fos.

North Pacific runs aground off Norway

The North Pacific (Singaporean-registry 58,853-gt, 104,966-dwt tanker
built in 1986, operated by Thome Ship Management Pte. Ltd.) ran aground
23 Feb., 16 kilometers/9.8 miles southeast of Gedser, Denmark. The ship
was sailing from Ventspils, Latvia, to Dunkirk, France, with 84,000 tons
of crude oil.

U.S. Coast Guard assists fishing vessel off Cuba

The fishing vessel Luken (U.S.-registry) sent out a distress call 15
Feb. after it began taking on water eight kilometers/five miles north of
Punta Maisi, Cuba. The U.S. Coast Guard Balsam-class Seagoing Buoy Tender
U.S.C.G.C. Madrona (WLB 302) sent a rescue and assistance boarding party
which installed a pump. After the cutter towed the Luken into international
waters, the fishing vessel Jaqueline L, which was nearby, escorted the
Luken to its homeport of Key West, Fla.

Containership hits gantry crane in Oakland

The California Orion (Panamanian-registry 36,022-dwt, 210-meter/700-foot
long containership built in 1980, operated by Nippon Yusen K.K.) allided
with a gantry crane at the Port of Oakland, Calif., on 7 Feb. The ship
had sailed from Los Angeles and was docking at Berth 23. Donald Hughes,
69, was aboard as a pilot when he suffered "severe intestinal distress."
He left the bridge, leaving a student pilot and the master in command.
When he returned eight minutes later, the ship was on course to ram the
crane. The berth and crane sustained U.S.$250,000 in damage and were taken
out of service for a week. The ship had some damage. On 13 Feb., the San
Francisco Bar Pilots voted 5 to 0 with 1 abstention to suspend Hughes'
state license without pay, pending a hearing.

Crewmembers of the Nakhodka file lawsuit

The 31 crewmembers of the Nakhodka (Russian-registry 13,157-gt, 20,471-dwt
tanker built in 1970, operated by Primorsk Shipping Co. and owned by Prisco
Traffic Ltd.) have filed a lawsuit against their employer seeking "material
and emotional" damages. A hearing on 25 Feb. was postponed because
the owners failed to appear in court in Nakhodka, Russia. Reportedly, they
were in Moscow for work related to the spill. Crewmembers said they were
fired immediately after the incident and the company failed to pay them
U.S.$3,000 each in compensation as promised. Judge Svetlana Usova has set
3 March as the date of the hearing. It was the second postponement. The
ship broke in half 0250 2 Jan. about 130 kilometers/81 miles northeast
of the Oki Islands, Shimane Prefecture, Japan. Thirty-one of 32 crew were
rescued and the master was killed. The Nakhodka carried 19,000 tons of
grade C heavy fuel, or 19 million liters/five million gallons or 133,000
barrels. The spill is estimated at more than five million liters/1.3 million
gallons or 5,000 tons and has affected eight Japanese prefectures. Meanwhile,
prosecutors in Nakhodka are planning to start an independent investigation
into the incident. This is in addition to one underway by the Nakhodka
Port Authority and a joint Japanese-Russian committee.


Want a lighthouse in Maine?

Ownership of 36 lighthouses in Maine will be transferred from the U.S.
Coast Guard to public interest entities at 1100 4 March at the Maine State
House in Augusta. It is the largest lighthouse transfer in U.S. history.
The groups receiving the lighthouses will be required to maintain them
in compliance with the U.S. Historical Preservation Act. In addition, the
new owners must allow access to Coast Guard personnel at all times, since
they will remain aids to navigation. Four lighthouses will be turned over
to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, but the remaining 32 still need
owners. Organizations seeking a lighthouse must submit a request through
the Island Institute, 410 Main St., Rockland, Maine, 04841. For more information,
contact First Coast Guard District Public Affairs at 617-223-8515 or the
Island Institute at 207-594-9209.

Fishing vessel finds bronze statue in Greece

A fishing vessel found the head of a bronze statue 20 Feb. off the northwest
coast of Kalymnos Island, Greece. Michail Koufakis, the master, said that
the head and other pieces of bronze were found in the vessel's nets.

U.S.C.G.C. Spar decommissioned

The U.S. Coast Guard Balsam-class Seagoing Buoy Tender U.S.C.G.C. Spar
(WLB 403) was decommissioned in South Portland, Maine at 1200 28 Feb. The
ship had been homeported there since 1974. WLB 403 was laid down 13 Sept.,
1943, and launched at Marine Iron Shipbuilding Co. on 2 Nov., 1943. The
ship, named for the SPARS, the Coast Guard women who served during World
War II, was commissioned 12 June, 1944. With a strengthened hull for icebreaking,
the ship did not receive a service life extension by rather a major renovation.

Kirkland placed on Washington Heritage Register

The Washington State Advisory Council on Historic Preservation has listed
the Kirkland on the Washington Heritage Register. The ship, formerly the
Tourist II, is owned by Argosy Cruises. It may also be placed on the National
Register of Historic Places. The vessel, operating from Kirkland, offers
daily tours of Lake Washington beginning in May.