Thursday, December 3, 2009

Bryant’s Maritime Blog – 3 December 2009

Headlines: GAO – assessing 100% container scanning requirement; Gulf of Aden – convoys scheduled; USCG – supplementary guidance on anti-piracy defensive measures; NTSB – report on small passenger vessel engineroom fire; Hearing scheduled on maritime domain awareness; Mandatory forum selection clause; Mixed contract not subject to Rule B attachment; New Zealand – ship inward and outward report forms updated; and UK – International Networks Improvement Program.

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Note: This blog is one section of the Bryant’s Maritime Consulting website. Visit the site for more extensive maritime regulatory information. Individual concerns may be addressed by retaining Dennis Bryant directly. Much of the highlighted text in this newsletter constitutes links to Internet sites providing more detailed information. Links on this page may be in PDF format, requiring use of Adobe Acrobat Reader. Comments on these postings are encouraged and may be made by clicking the envelope that appears at the end of each posting. Be aware that the daily blog entry is a single posting, even though it contains a number of individual items.

GAO – assessing 100% container scanning requirement

clip_image004 The US Government Accountability Office (GAO) issued a report assessing the requirement to scan 100% of the US-bound maritime shipping containers. It notes that the Customs and Border Protection (CBP) has been unable to achieve 100% scanning at any of the limited number of participating foreign ports. The program faces numerous challenges, including technology problems, high costs, and opposition from some foreign governments. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) intends to issue a blanket 2-year extension of the 2012 deadline, as authorized by law. GAO recommends that a thorough cost-benefit analysis be conducted. GAO-10-12 (12/2/09).

Gulf of Aden – convoys scheduled

clip_image006 clip_image008 The NATO Shipping Centre issued an update stating that the Russian Navy vessel Admiral Chabanenko is scheduled to carry out an eastbound convoy through the Gulf of Aden on December 4 and a westbound convoy on December 8. Requests for participation must be submitted to the Russian Maritime and Security Service (RMSS). (12/1/09).

USCG – supplementary guidance on anti-piracy defensive measures

clip_image010 The US Coast Guard issued Port Security Advisory 11-09 providing supplementary guidance on anti-piracy defensive measures, particularly for US vessels operating in high-risk waters. Maintaining the high practical vessel speed is a major factor in defeating piratical attacks. In considering use of heavy wheel movements, masters should be mindful of possible adverse impact on speed. Guidance is also provided regarding use of equivalent measures in lieu of those provided for in MARSEC Directive 104-6 (Rev 2). (12/1/09).

NTSB – report on small passenger vessel engineroom fire

clip_image012 The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) issued the report of its investigation of an engineroom fire onboard a US small passenger vessel in the Columbia River on April 8, 2008. The probable cause of the fire was the failure of a pressurized component on the port main propulsion hydraulic system, resulting in hydraulic oil spraying onto the port engine’s exhaust piping and igniting. The report also identifies a safety issue related to inadequate requirements for small passenger vessels regarding out-of-water survival craft for passengers and crew – this vessel had only a rescue boat. The NTSB recommends that the US Coast Guard require such vessels to carry sufficient out-of-water survival craft for all passengers and crew. MAR-09/04/SUM (12/2/09).

Hearing scheduled on maritime domain awareness

clip_image014 On December 9, the Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation of the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure will conduct a hearing on maritime domain awareness. (12/2/09).

Mandatory forum selection clause

clip_image016 In an unpublished decision, the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit ruled that language in a bill of lading providing: “Any disputes arising under the bill of lading to decided in London according to English Law” is a mandatory forum selection clause. Plaintiff’s attempt to have the dispute decided in US courts was properly dismissed. Macsteel International v. M/V Larch Arrow, No. 09-0045-cv (2nd Cir., December 1, 2009).

Mixed contract not subject to Rule B attachment

clip_image016[1] In an unpublished decision, the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit ruled that attachment under Supplemental Rule B of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure is not available where the dispute involves a mixed contract that includes both marine and non-marine elements, where the elements are not severable. Tradhol Internacional v. Colony Sugar Mills, No. 09-0614-cv (2nd Cir., November 20, 2009).

New Zealand – ship inward and outward report forms updated

clip_image018 The New Zealand Customs Service issued a news release stating that the Ships Inward Report form C1 and Ships Outward Report form C2 have been updated. These forms have been amended to include information required for the amended method of calculating Maritime Safety charges that was introduced in November 2008. Ships should utilize the updated version of these forms henceforth. (12/2/09).

UK – International Networks Improvement Program

clip_image020 The UK Department for Transport issued a notice discussing its International Networks Improvement Program, which seeks to improve the passenger and freight end-to-end journeys through international networks and maximize the contribution of international networks in facilitating UK economic growth. (12/2/09).

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 – December 2009

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