February 24, 2009
Bryant’s Maritime Blog
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NOAA – Thunder Bay NMS – draft management plan
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) issued a notice stating that the draft management plan and draft environmental assessment for the Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary (NMS) are available for review. Meetings to receive public comment will be held in Rogers City (March 18); Harrisville (March 19); Lansing (March 20); and Alpena (March 24). Written comments should be submitted by April 10. 74 Fed. Reg. 8231 (February 24, 2009).
USN – counterpiracy efforts in Gulf of Aden
The US Navy issued a news release stating that Turkey and Singapore recently committed forces to join Combined Task Force (CTF) 151, a naval coalition conducting counterpiracy operations in the Gulf of Aden. (2/23/09).
CBP – beetle infestation found in ship’s dry food stores
The US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) issued a news release stating that one of its agriculture specialists recently found live beetles infesting a ship’s dry food stores. The insects were seized [but reading them their rights was omitted]. The vessel elected to depart US waters immediately, rather than undergo fumigation in port. The vessel will not be allowed to re-enter the US without a valid fumigation certificate. (2/20/09).
TSA – TWIC update
The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) issued an update to its status report on the implementation of the Transportation Worker Identification Credential (TWIC) program. The TWIC Dashboard shows that (as of 19 February) 950,616 maritime workers have enrolled for a TWIC and that 719,698 cards have been activated. (2/19/09).
Galveston – lightering of grounded tanker continues
The US Coast Guard issued a press release stating that lightering continues in the effort to refloat a tanker grounded off Galveston. (2/23/09).
IMO – tonnage measurement of novel types of craft
The IMO issued a circular forwarding a communication received from the Government of Panama relating to tonnage measurement of novel types of craft. The Panamanian method relies heavily on the US Coast Guard Tonnage Guide for Simplified Measurement, but includes various amplifications. Note: This is a large document. TM.1/Circ.92 (10/6/08).
IMO – new and amended traffic separation schemes
The IMO issued a circular forwarding information concerning new and amended traffic separation schemes (TSSs). The TSSs addressed are: (1) In the approaches to the Port of Thessaloniki [new]; (2) The Ǻland Sea [new]; (3) In Liverpool Bay [new]; (4) In the approach to Boston, Massachusetts [amended]; (5) Off Land’s End, between Seven Stones and Longships [amended]; (6) In the approaches to the River Humber [amended]; and (7) At Hatter Barn [amended]. COLREGS.2/Circ.60 (12/10/08).
IMO – transitioning from paper to electronic charts
The IMO issued a circular providing guidance on training mariners on the upcoming transition from using paper charts to using the electronic chart display and information system (ECDIS) for navigation. SN.1/Circ.276 (12/10/08).
UK – report on vessel that lost timber cargo
The UK Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB) issued a summary of its preliminary examination to the loss of timber cargo by a merchant vessel at the western end of the Dover Traffic Separation Scheme (TSS) on 19 January 2009. While en route from Sweden to Egypt, the ship encountered heavy weather, causing the ship to severely heel. Cargo lashings failed and approximately half of the deck cargo of packaged timber was lost overboard. Among other things, the ship’s operators have been advised to maximize friction within the stow of timber deck cargoes in the future. (2/23/09).
UK – consultation on light dues
The UK Department for Transport has initiated a consultation on proposed amendments to the light dues regulations. As proposed, the light dues rate for merchant vessels calling at ports in the UK and Ireland would increase from 35p to 41p per net registered ton (nrt). The caps on the maximum chargeable tonnage would increase from 35,000 nrt to 50,000 nrt. The annual number of chargeable voyages would increase from seven to nine. If these amendments are implemented, the maximum annual light dues would increase from £12,250 to £20,500. Comments on this proposal must be submitted by 18 May. Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Transport Jim Fitzpatrick submitted a written statement to Parliament explaining the necessity for these amendments. (2/23/09).
If you have questions regarding the above items, please contact the editor:
Dennis L. Bryant
Bryant’s Maritime Blog
4845 SW 91st Way
Gainesville, FL 32608-8135