Headlines: NIC – update on oil spill response; USCG – investigation of loss of power on cruise ship; DOT – removal of obsolete ships from Suisun Bay proceeding apace; Hopedale, Louisiana – safety zone; Massachusetts – “no discharge” zone; NASA – Arctic voyage examining ocean optics; Senate – proposed amendment to maritime liability bill; GAO – Navy’s use of investment incentives at private shipyards; ReCAAP – Half Yearly Report; Australia – precautionary measures taken; and UK – provision of marine aids to navigation.
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. Exposure to this newsletter has been shown to cause cancer in mice.
NIC – update on oil spill response
The National Incident Command (NIC) issued a news release updating the status of the response to the Gulf of Mexico oil spill. An examination is being undertaken to determine the effect of the recent bad weather on the spilled oil and the boom. Efforts to begin the static kill and to continue drilling the relief wells have recommended. (7/26/10).
USCG – investigation of loss of power on cruise ship
The US Coast Guard issued a news release stating that it will conduct a joint investigation with the ship operator regarding the loss of power and propulsion on a cruise ship shortly after its departure from Port Everglades. (7/26/10).
DOT – removal of obsolete ships from Suisun Bay proceeding apace
The Department of Transportation (DOT) issued a news release stating that the Maritime Administration (MARAD) is ahead of schedule in removing obsolete ships from the Suisun Bay Reserve Fleet. Schedules agreed to in a settlement of litigation called for ten ships to be removed by October 1. With the departure of the fleet oiler Taluga, the target has been achieved two months early. (7/26/10).
Hopedale, Louisiana – safety zone
The US Coast Guard established, through September 24, a temporary safety zone requiring no wake on the Mississippi River Gulf Outlet (MRGO) at mile 42 to enhance safety at the oil spill response staging area. 75 Fed. Reg. 43821 (July 27, 2010).
NASA – Arctic voyage examining ocean optics
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) issued a news release stating that its scientists are engaged in a voyage on the Coast Guard icebreaker Healy studying the physics, chemistry, and biology of the Arctic Ocean and Chukchi Sea. (7/21/10).
Massachusetts – “no discharge” zone
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued a notice stating that it has determined that adequate facilities for the safe and sanitary removal and treatment of sewage from all vessels are reasonably available for coastal waters of Gloucester, Rockport, Essex, Ipswich, Rowley, Newbury, Newburyport, Salisbury, Amesbury, West Newbury, Merrimac, Groveland, North Andover, Haverhill, Methuen, and Lawrence. 75 Fed. Reg. 43979 (July 27, 2010).
Senate – proposed amendment to maritime liability bill
Senator Rockefeller (D-WV) is preparing a revised version of his bill entitled Fairness in Admiralty and Maritime Law Act (S. 3600). As now revised, the bill would not repeal the Limitation of Liability Act, but would exempt claims for wages, personal injury, and death from application of the limitation amount. A new provision would be added with regard to claims for death resulting from a fishing vessel accident on the high seas. For such a claim, additional compensation would be recoverable for nonpecuniary damages, but punitive damages would not be recoverable. It is expected that the revision will be introduced shortly. (7/23/10).
GAO – Navy’s use of investment incentives at private shipyards
The Government Accountability Office (GAO) issued a Report to Congress regarding the need for guidance for the US Navy on use of investment incentives at private shipyards. It found that modernizing facilities and equipment at shipyards that build Navy ships can lead to improved efficiency and ultimately reduce the cost of constructing ships. The GAO recommends that the Navy develop a policy that identifies the intended goals and objectives of investment incentives, criteria for using incentives, and methods for validating outcomes. GAO-10-686 (7/26/10).
ReCAAP – Half Yearly Report
The ReCAAP Information Sharing Centre issued is Half Yearly Report covering the period January through June 2010. A total of 71 incidents of piracy and armed robbery against ships were reported in the Asian region. This represents an increase in the number of incidents reported during the same time period in each of the three previous years. (7/26/10). The item was brought to my attention by my good friend John Bennett of Maritime Protective Services.
Australia – precautionary measures taken
The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) issued a media release stating that, as a precautionary measure, it has directed a bulk carrier off the outer Great Barrier Reef to have tugs in attendance. The vessel suffered a number of breakdowns and is currently attempting repairs. (7/24/10).
UK – provision of marine aids to navigation
The UK Department for Transport posted the Statement of the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Transport, Mike Penning) regarding the provision of marine aids to navigation by the General Lighthouse Authorities (GLAs). Following review of comments received on the Atkins Report, the Government has decided to create a general lighthouse authority joint strategic board to drive efficiencies and undertake other steps to minimize the burdens on those paying light dues. (7/26/10).
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 – July 2010