Headlines: Chicago waterways – temporary safety zone; MARAD – Asian Carp briefing; USCG – safety zone around riser in Gulf of Mexico; Gulf of Mexico oil spill response – current operations; NTSB – investigation of Staten Island Ferry casualty; USCG – LRIT testing; FMC – public meeting re NVOCC negotiated rate arrangements; Coronado – danger zone; Senate – Coast Guard Authorization Bill passes; GAO – report on cruise ship security; Arabian Sea – fishing vessel hijacked by pirates; EMSA – vessel surveillance system; Australia – update re Shen Neng 1; Panama Canal – April operations summary; South Atlantic – rescue after yacht allides with iceberg; and Kanton Island – food supplies needed.
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Chicago waterways – temporary safety zone
The US Coast Guard established a temporary safety zone on various waterways in the Chicago area from the Brandon Road Lock and Dam to Lake Michigan, including the Des Plaines River, the Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal, the Chicago River, and the Calumet-Saganashkee Channel. The regulation will be in effect until March 1, 2011. Comments on the regulation should be submitted by July 12. The regulation restricts vessels from entering designated waters without permission from the USCG Captain of the Port (COTP). This action is necessary to protect the waters, waterway users, and vessels from hazards associated with a myriad of actions intended to control the spread of aquatic nuisance species. 75 Fed. Reg. 26094 (May 11, 2010).
MARAD – Asian Carp briefing
The Maritime Administration (MARAD) will be hosting an industry briefing and question and answer call on behalf of the Asian Carp Regional Coordinating Committee. The briefing will be from 10:00 am to 11:00 am CDT on Wednesday, May 12. The call-in numbers are: (US) 866-216-6835 and (International) 1-913-227-1220. The passcode is 172508. (5/10/10).
USCG – safety zone around riser in Gulf of Mexico
The US Coast Guard established a temporary safety zone around the riser that is leaking oil at Mississippi Canyon 252 in the Gulf of Mexico. Vessels should not approach waters above the riser without permission of the USCG Captain of the Port (COTP). This rule will remain in effect through May 26, 2010. 75 Fed. Reg. 26091 (May 11, 2010).
Gulf of Mexico oil spill response – current operations
The Unified Command issued a news release summarizing current oil spill response operations in the Gulf of Mexico. More than 290 vessels are now involved in the response effort, along with approximately 10,000 individuals. A detailed timeline of the response effort was also released. (5/10/10).
NTSB – investigation of Staten Island Ferry casualty
The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) issued a news release stating that it launched a go-team to commence an investigation of the Staten Island Ferry accident. (5/8/10).
USCG – LRIT testing
The US Coast Guard issued an announcement stating that it has recognized CLS America as the US testing ASP that will issue Conformance Test Reports (CTRs) on behalf of the United States Government. CTRs previously issued by Pole Star Space Applications will remain valid. (5/6/10).
FMC – public meeting re NVOCC negotiated rate arrangements
The Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) issued a notice stating that it will hold a public meeting on May 24 at its office in Washington, DC to receive comments on the proposed rule relating to non-vessel-operating common carrier (NVOCC negotiated rate arrangements. Requests to participate in the public meeting must be received by May 14. (5/7/10).
Coronado – danger zone
The US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) is establishing a danger zone in waters of the Pacific Ocean adjacent to the small arms range at the Naval Base Coronado (NBC) at Coronado, California. The regulation comes into effect on June 10. 75 Fed. Reg. 26100 (May 11, 2010).
Senate – Coast Guard Authorization Bill passes
The Senate passed by unanimous consent a substitute version of the Coast Guard Authorization Act (H.R. 3619). The measure now goes to a Conference Committee to resolve differences with the House version. Senator Cantwell (D-WA) issued a news release stating that the bill, if enacted into law, would extend the “high volume port area” designation west from Port Angeles to Cape Flattery, expanding oil spill response requirements throughout the Strait of Juan de Fuca. It would also authorize the Coast Guard to reorganize its command structure and mandate an analysis of the costs and benefits of building new polar icebreakers versus rebuilding existing ones. (5/7/10). Note: The text of the Senate version was brought to my attention by my esteemed friend J. Ashley Roach.
GAO – report on cruise ship security
The US Government Accountability Office (GAO) released its report on cruise ship security. Overall, the level of security was found to adequate. The GAO recommends, though, that the US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) conduct a study to determine whether requiring cruise lines to provide passenger reservation data would substantially benefit homeland security. GAO-10-400 (5/10/10). Note: This item was brought to my attention by my good friend John Bennett of Maritime Protective Services.
Arabian Sea – fishing vessel hijacked by pirates
The EU Maritime Security Centre-Horn of Africa (MSC-HOA) issued a press release stating that pirates hijacked a fishing vessel in the Arabian Sea approximately 700 nautical miles northeast of the Seychelles. The vessel has crew of 28. (5/10/10).
EMSA – vessel surveillance system
The European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) issued a leaflet entitled “Sharing the European Vessel Traffic Image and Beyond”. It explains the EMSA vessel surveillance system, which relies heavily on the Automatic Identification System (AIS) and the Long-Range Identification and Tracking (LRIT) system. (5/10/10).
Australia – update re Shen Neng 1
Maritime Safety Queensland issued an update stating that the damaged bulker Shen Neng 1 is being towed to Hervey Bay. A ship-to-ship transfer of its cargo of coal is scheduled to commence on May 12. (5/9/10).
Panama Canal – April operations summary
The Panama Canal Authority issued an advisory summarizing operations for April 2010. It also discusses the Panama Canal pricing structure. (5/6/10).
South Atlantic – rescue after yacht allides with iceberg
The UK Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) issued a press notice stating that it is coordinating the rescue of a couple and their daughters in the South Atlantic Ocean after their yacht hit a low-lying iceberg in waters northeast of the South Georgia Islands. (5/7/10).
Kanton Island – food supplies needed
The UK Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) issued a press notice stating that it received a call from a British sailor taking a yacht from Hawaii to Australia. He stopped briefly on Kanton Island in the Republic of Kiribati. The 24 inhabitants were on the verge of starvation because the supply ship was stuck at a nearby island. MCA has contacted the US Coast Guard to possibly arrange for supplies to be delivered. (5/9/10).
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 – May 2010