Headlines: NATO – importance of anti-piracy mission is recognized; USCG & MARAD – meeting re Maritime Labour Convention, 2006; Hood Canal – temporary safety zone; Marine Protected Areas Federal Advisory Committee – meeting; FMC – meeting; Panama Canal – transit information requirements; Tonga – submerged ferry wreck located; Australia – answers in WWII loss of HMAS Sydney; IMO – hazard evaluation of substances transported by ships; IMO – GMDSS Master Plan; IMO – Global SAR Plan; NTSB – Christopher Hart sworn in as member; and USCG – rise in recreational boating fatalities.
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NATO – importance of anti-piracy mission is recognized
In his first press conference since appointment as the head of NATO, Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen stated that he wants to see NATO having a standing anti-piracy role, with the capabilities, legal arrangements, and force generation in place to make it happen. (8/3/09).
USCG & MARAD – meeting re Maritime Labour Convention, 2006
The US Coast Guard issued a notice stating that it and the Maritime Administration (MARAD) will host an informational meeting in Washington, DC on August 24 to provide the industry with an overview of the Maritime Labour Convention, 2006. The meeting is strictly informational and is not meant to discuss the merits of US ratification of the Convention. 74 Fed. Reg. 40834 (August 13, 2009).
Hood Canal – temporary safety zone
The US Coast Guard has established, through September 30, a temporary safety zone on waters of the Hood Canal in Washington State in the vicinity of the Hood Canal Bridge due to the ongoing Hood Canal Bridge Construction Project. 74 Fed. Reg. 40734 (August 13, 2009).
Marine Protected Areas Federal Advisory Committee – meeting
The Marine Protected Areas Federal Advisory Committee, sponsored by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), will meet in Anchorage on September 9-11. 74 Fed. Reg. 40814 (August 13, 2009).
FMC – meeting
The Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) issued a news release stating that the Commission will meet in its office in Washington, DC on August 19. In its open session the Commission will consider a request for extension of time in Docket No. 08-04: Tienshan, Inc. v. Tianjin Hua Feng Transportation Agency. (8/12/09).
Panama Canal – transit information requirements
The Panama Canal Authority issued an advisory reminding customers of the regulation regarding minimum visibility and other information required for transit through the Canal. It also reissued, for the convenience of its customers, the Pre-arrival Vessel Information form. (8/11/09).
Tonga – submerged ferry wreck located
The Royal New Zealand Navy has reportedly located the submerged wreck of the passenger ferry Princess Ashika in 110 meters of water. The ferry sank while transiting between two Tongan islands on August 5. While 53 persons were rescued and two bodies have been recovered, more than 90 persons are missing and presumed drowned. (8/12/09).
Australia – answers in WWII loss of HMAS Sydney
The Australian Ministry of Defence released the report of its investigation into the loss of the HMAS Sydney off the coast of Western Australia on November 19, 1941. The cruiser sank rapidly, with the loss of all 645 crew, as a result of its engagement with the German raider HSK Kormoran. The Kormoran was operating as a Q-ship, disguised to resemble a Dutch merchant ship. Interviews of the surviving German sailors revealed that when the cruiser was close off its beam, the raider raised the German Navy ensign and opened fire. The first shot struck the bridge of the Sydney, apparently killing the captain and most of the senior officers, as well as disabling much of the ship’s internal communications and control capability. The battle lasted less than an hour with the loss of both vessels. The wrecks of the two warships were finally located in March 2008, leading to a reopening of the investigation into the worst naval disaster in Australian history. (8/12/09).
IMO – hazard evaluation of substances transported by ships
The IMO issued a circular forwarding the report of the 46th session of the GESAMP/EHS Working Group on the evaluation of hazards of harmful substances carried by ships. BLG.1/Circ.29 (4/30/09).
IMO – GMDSS Master Plan
The IMO issued a circular forwarding the updated version of the master plan of shore-based facilities for the Global Maritime Distress and Safety System (GMDSS Master Plan). The document is 158 pages long. GMDSS.1/Circ.11 (3/31/09).
IMO – Global SAR Plan
The IMO issued a circular forwarding corrigendum 7 to the Global Search and Rescue (SAR) Plan, containing information on the current availability of SAR services. SAR.8/Circ.1/Corr.7 (3/31/09).
NTSB – Christopher Hart sworn in as member
The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) issued a news release stating that Christopher A. Hart has been sworn in as a member of the Board. Mr. Hart was a member of the Board from 1990 to 1993. Most recently, he was Deputy Director for Air Traffic Safety Oversight at the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). (8/12/09).
USCG – rise in recreational boating fatalities
The US Coast Guard issued a news release stating that the fatality rate for recreational boating in the United States increased from 5.3 deaths per 100,000 registered recreational boats in 2007 to 5.6 deaths per 100,000 registered recreational boats in 2008. During 2008, there were 709 deaths, 3,331 injuries, and approximately $54 million in damages stemming from 4,789 recreational boating accidents. The top five contributing factors in these accident were operator inattention, careless or reckless operation, no proper lookout, operator inexperience, and passenger or skier behavior. (8/12/09).
If you have questions regarding the above items, please contact the editor:
Dennis L. Bryant
Bryant’s Maritime Consulting
4845 SW 91st Way
Gainesville, FL 32608-8135
© Dennis L. Bryant – August 2009