Headlines: USCG – cargo securing methods for packages in containers; EPA – transboundary shipments of hazardous waste; RITA – research direction, priority areas, and performance metrics; Alaska – safety zone proposed around drillship; USCG – termination of Loran-C program; Massachusetts – ferry company charged with dumping sewage; FMC – Michael Khouri sworn in as a Commissioner; EC – major contracts awarded for Galileo system; Paris MOU – lifeboat launching arrangements; Australia – PSC – focused inspection campaign; and New Zealand – whale hunting collision under investigation.
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USCG – cargo securing methods for packages in containers
The US Coast Guard seeks comments on methods for securing cargo in transport vehicles and freight containers in order to determine if a standardized approval or certification process or improved performance criteria for flexible strapping securing systems is needed. Currently, there is no certification or qualification standard for blocking, bracing, or for the use of strapping systems for securing cargo. Rather, there is only a general requirement that cargo be secured to prevent shifting in any direction during transport. Comments should be submitted by March 9. 75 Fed. Reg. 1070 (January 8, 2010).
EPA – transboundary shipments of hazardous waste
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is amending its regulations regarding hazardous waste exports from and imports into the United States concerning transboundary movement of hazardous waste among countries belonging to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). The amendments come into effect on July 7, 2010. 75 Fed. Reg. 1235 (January 8, 2010).
RITA – research direction, priority areas, and performance metrics
The Research and Innovative Technology Administration (RITA) of the US Department of Transportation (DOT) is seeking public stakeholder input on research strategies and metrics necessary to achieve strategic transportation goals and to drive transportation policy in both the short and long terms. Comments should be submitted by February 8. 75 Fed. Reg. 1115 (January 8, 2010). Note: There are continuing complaints that US transportation policy and strategy ignores the maritime sector. This is an opportunity to have your voice heard.
Alaska – safety zone proposed around drillship
The US Coast Guard proposes to establish a temporary safety zone around a drillship while it is anchored on location in order to drill exploratory wells at various locations over the US outer continental shelf in the Chukchi and Beaufort Seas between July 1 and October 31. Comments on this proposal should be submitted by February 5. 75 Fed. Reg. 803 (January 6, 2010).
USCG – termination of Loran-C program
The US Coast Guard issued a news release stating that it plans to cease broadcasting the North American Loran-C signal February 8, 2010. Further information regarding this development has been provided by the USCG Navigation Center. (1/7/10). For those who missed it, the following is from yesterday’s Blog. The US Coast Guard issued a notice stating that it will commence the phased decommissioning of the Loran-C infrastructure on or about February 8 and that all Loran-C stations are expected to cease transmitting the Loran-C signal by October 1. The Final Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (PEIS) and Record of Decision (ROD) explain the environmental aspects of the termination and the justification for this action. 75 Fed. Reg. 1383 (January 7, 2010). Note: While I can appreciate the economic basis of this decision, I still believe that the United States should not be putting all of its precision navigation capabilities into one basket. GPS is very good, but it is subject to jamming and interference.
Massachusetts – ferry company charged with dumping sewage
The Department of Justice issued a media release stating that a ferry company based in Marblehead, Massachusetts has been charged with dumping raw sewage from its ferry into navigable waters near Salem and Boston on a routine basis for a number of years. (1/7/10).
FMC – Michael Khouri sworn in as a Commissioner
The Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) issued a news release stating that Michael A. Khouri of Louisville, Kentucky has been sworn in as a Commissioner. Mr. Khouri has worked in the maritime industry for 35 years. (1/7/10).
EC – major contracts awarded for Galileo system
The European Commission (EC) issued a press release stating that it awarded three of the six contracts for procurement of initial operational capability for the Galileo satellite navigation system. Initial deployment and service provision could commence in early 2014. (1/7/10). Note: As a hard-core capitalist, I support fair competition and look forward to how the US GPS program will respond. Users will be the ultimate beneficiaries.
Paris MOU – lifeboat launching arrangements
The Paris MOU issued a press release stating that a worryingly high level of deficiencies were revealed during the concentrated inspection campaign (CIC) on lifeboat launching arrangements carried out jointly with the Tokyo MOU between 1 September and 30 November 2009. During the CIC, the Paris MOU carried out 5,749 port state control (PSC) inspections. As a result of these inspections, 80 ships were detained due to serious deficiencies with their lifeboat launching appliances and/or procedures. Overall, one in eight lifeboat drills was not performed satisfactorily. (1/7/10).
Australia – PSC – focused inspection campaign
The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) issued a notice stating that, during the period 1 February through 30 April, the port state control (PSC) program will focus its inspections on container securing equipment, both fixed and portable. Notice 2/2010 (1/6/10).
New Zealand – whale hunting collision under investigation
Maritime New Zealand issued a media release stating that it is investigating an incident involving the New Zealand-registered whaling protest vessel Ady Gil and the Japanese whaling vessel Shonan Maru No.2 following a collision in the Southern Ocean. A formal complaint made by the Japanese whaling fleet prior to the incident of January 6 regarding the Ady Gil is also under investigation. (1/7/10). This item was brought to my attention by my friend David Shirlaw of SeaWaves.
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 – January 2010