Headlines: Freeport – security zones in Brazos River; Freeport – moving security zone; Hudson River – RNA due to ice conditions; Kennedy Space Center – amendment proposed for restricted area; Great Lakes Pilotage Advisory Committee meeting; White House – continuation of national emergency re Cuba; FMC – hearing schedule re passenger vessel financial responsibility; DHS OIG – overview of Container Security Initiative program; USCG – 2010 Light Lists available for downloading; DOT – transportation workplace drug and alcohol testing; Supreme Court – renewed motion for preliminary injunction re Asian carp; Court – POLA trucking requirements largely upheld; IMO – recognized fire test laboratories; IMO – halon banking and reception facilities; EC – report critical of US 100% scanning requirement; Norway – grounding due to distraction and lack of passage plan; Panama Canal – best value proposal for vehicular crossing; and Review – International Law of the Shipmaster.
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Freeport – security zones in Brazos River
The US Coast Guard is establishing four permanent security zones in the Brazos River in Freeport, Texas. The security zones come into effect on March 29. 75 Fed. Reg. 8491 (February 25, 2010).
Freeport – moving security zone
The US Coast Guard is establishing a moving security zone for certain vessels in the Port of Freeport, Texas. The security zone comes into effect on March 29. 75 Fed. Reg. 8489 (February 25, 2010).
Hudson River – RNA due to ice conditions
The US Coast Guard has promulgated a temporary rule establishing a regulated navigation area (RNA) on the Hudson River south of the Troy Locks. Unless specifically authorized, vessels with less than 3000 horsepower are prohibited from engaging in towing operations in these waters when ice conditions are eight (8) inches or greater. This temporary rule will remain in effect until March 31. 75 Fed. Reg. 8486 (February 25, 2010).
Kennedy Space Center – amendment proposed for restricted area
The US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) proposes to revise its regulations to establish a new restricted area in the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of the John F. Kennedy Space Center in Florida. Comments on the proposal should be submitted by March 29. 75 Fed. Reg. 8570 (February 25, 2010).
Great Lakes Pilotage Advisory Committee – meeting
The Great Lakes Pilotage Advisory Committee (GLPAC), sponsored by the US Coast Guard, will meet in Cleveland, Ohio on March 16 and 17. 75 Fed. Reg. 8728 (February 25, 2010).
White House – continuation of national emergency re Cuba
The White House issued a notice signed by President Obama continuing for another year the national emergency relating to Cuba and of the emergency authority relating to the regulation of anchorage and movement of vessels. (2/23/10).
FMC – hearing schedule re passenger vessel financial responsibility
The Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) issued a notice establishing the schedule for its March 3 hearing on passenger vessel financial responsibility. (2/24/10).
DHS OIG – overview of Container Security Initiative program
The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Office of Inspector General (OIG) released the report of its review of the Container Security Initiative (CSI) program administered by the US Customs and Border Protection (CBP). The report concludes that CBP uses proactive management and oversight processes through CSI to identify and inspect high-risk cargo at foreign ports. But, the CSI Strategic Plan does not address how the program integrates with other international maritime cargo security programs within the layered security strategy. OIG-10-52 (2/24/10).
USCG – 2010 Light Lists available for downloading
The US Coast Guard Navigation Center issued a notice stating that the 2010 Light Lists are available for downloading. (2/24/10).
DOT – transportation workplace drug and alcohol testing
The Department of Transportation (DOT) issued a regulation making technical amendments to its drug and alcohol testing procedures to authorize employers to begin using the updated US DOT Alcohol Testing Form (ATF) and the Management Information System (MIS) Data Collection Form. The amendments come into effect immediately. 75 Fed. Reg. 8383 (February 25, 2010).
Supreme Court – renewed motion for preliminary injunction re Asian carp
The US Supreme Court has posted the Renewed Motion for Preliminary Injunction filed by the State of Michigan against the State of Illinois, the Metropolitan Sanitary District of Greater Chicago, and the United States. The State of Michigan, supported by numerous states bordering the Great Lakes, as well as the Province of Ontario, seeks an order requiring the permanent closure of the locks and related works of the Chicago Sanitary & Ship Canal. Michigan contends that immediate and permanent closure is necessary to prevent Asian carp from migrating from the Canal into the Great Lakes, thereby causing severe economic damage. Closure of the locks would have a severe economic impact on the tug and barge industry in northern Illinois and Indiana, as well as on numerous local businesses that relay to that transportation mode. The Supreme Court declined to grant a preliminary injunction when first sought in December 2009. The Renewed Motion relies on new eDNA evidence that the Asian carp are closer than previously suspected to migrating into the Great Lakes. (2/4/10).
Court – POLA trucking requirements largely upheld
The US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit affirmed, for the most part, the district court decision to deny a motion for an injunction to block implementation of mandatory concession agreement requirements imposed by the City of Los Angeles on trucks and truckers entering the Port of Los Angeles (POLA). Suit against the City was brought by an association representing many of the commercial trucking companies in the United States. The association contended that the City requirements were preempted by federal law. The appellate court found that most of the City requirements fell within the safety exemption and, as a result, were not preempted. One provision, though, requiring that drayage trucks display identifying placards with a telephone number, was found to not be safety-related and thus subject to preemption. American Trucking Assn v. City of Los Angeles, No. 09-55749 (9th Cir., February 24, 2010). Note: the original lawsuit included the City of Long Beach as a defendant. The trucking association and the City of Long Beach settled their dispute.
IMO – recognized fire test laboratories
The IMO issued a circular forwarding an updated list of recognized test laboratories for the purpose of conducting fire tests in accordance with IMO requirements. FP.1/Circ.39 (1/8/10).
IMO – halon banking and reception facilities
The IMO issued a circular forwarding an updated list of halon banking and reception facilities. FP.1/Circ.40 (1/8/10).
EC – report critical of US 100% scanning requirement
The European Commission (EC) released the report of the European Commissioner for Taxation and Customs Union - Secure Trade and 100% Scanning of Containers - examining the impact on Europe of the planned US requirement that 100% of shipping containers bound for the United States be scanned prior to loading on a ship. The report found that the initial cost to European ports of the scanning and radiation detection equipment would be €430 million and the annual operational costs would be more than €200 million. Direct transport costs would increase by 10%. Ports unable to implement the scanning protocols would lose access to the US market, further disrupting trade. Additionally, the report finds that 100% scanning would create a false sense of security without resulting in a meaningful enhancement of the actual level of security. (2/17/10).
Norway – grounding due to distraction and lack of passage plan
The Accident Investigation Board Norway (AIBN) released the report of its investigation of the grounding of a bulk carrier at Arsundoya, Norway on 6 October 2008. The grounding on a charted island occurred during transit to Sunndalsora to offload a cargo of aluminum oxide. Because the master did not have detailed charts of the area until the pilot arrived, no passage plan had been prepared. The pilot and master were distracted by repairs being made to the ship’s AIS and failed to notice that the ship was headed straight toward an island. The chief mate, who was plotting the course on the newly arrived charts, assumed that the ship would pass the island close aboard, thus failing to alert the master until the last moment. SJO 2010/01 (January 2010).
Panama Canal – best value proposal for vehicular crossing
The Panama Canal Authority issued a press release stating that it has determined that Group URS-COWI submitted the “best value” proposal for the permanent vehicular crossing on the Atlantic side of the Panama Canal. Once the contract is awarded and the order to proceed is issued, URS-COWI will have 240 days in which to submit its final plans and determine whether the crossing should be a bridge or a tunnel. (2/22/10).
Review – International Law of the Shipmaster
I have had the distinct pleasure of reading the International Law of the Shipmaster, by John A.C. Cartner, Richard O. Fiske & Tara L. Leiter. I have written what I hope is an unbiased review thereof. (2/24/10).
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 – February 2010