Headlines: DHS OIG – USCG ALJs cleared of misconduct; USCG – clarification re salvage and marine firefighting; USCG – correction re vessel inspection alternatives; TRB – annual meeting; and UK – tanker facilitates rescue of dismasted yacht.
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DHS OIG – USCG ALJs cleared of misconduct, but room for improvement
The US Coast Guard issued a press release stating that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Office of Inspector General (OIG) issued two reports of its investigation into allegations of misconduct by USCG Administrative Law Judges (ALJs) made by a former ALJ. One OIG report found no evidence supporting the allegations. The other OIG report recommended various programmatic changes to improve the Coast Guard’s system for adjudicating suspension and revocation (S&R) matters. (9/14/10).
USCG – clarification re salvage and marine firefighting
The US Coast Guard issued a clarification regarding its salvage and marine firefighting requirements for vessel response plans (VRPs) for oil. On September 3, the agency announced that the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) had approved the collection of information associated with those requirements. The announcement also indicated that the requirement would be enforced beginning September 3. The Coast Guard has now clarified that the information collection will be enforced as of February 22, 2011, when the salvage and marine firefighting regulations come into force. 75 Fed. Reg. 55973 (September 15, 2010).
USCG – correction re vessel inspection alternatives
The US Coast Guard issued a correction to its vessel inspection alternatives regulations. The correction lists the various international certificates that a recognized classification society may be delegated authority to issue on behalf of the Coast Guard under this program. The correction is retroactively effective to October 1, 2009. 75 Fed. Reg. 56015 (September 15, 2010).
TRB – annual meeting
The Transportation Research Board (TRB) of the National Academies will host its 90th Annual Meeting in Washington, DC on January 23-27, 2011. The program covers all transportation modes, with more than 3,000 presentations in nearly 600 sessions. (9/14/10).
UK – tanker facilitates rescue of dismasted yacht
The UK Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) issued a press notice stating that a tanker en route from Port Gerome, France to Providence, Canada contacted Falmouth Coastguard to report that it received a faint pan pan urgency call from a dismasted yacht. The yacht was trying unsuccessfully to call the Coastguard on its handheld radio. At the request of the Coastguard, the tanker reversed course and stood by the yacht until an RNLI lifeboat arrived. The tanker then provided a lee so that the yacht could be taken into tow. (9/14/10). Note: The actions of the master and crew were in the humanitarian traditions of the sea.
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 – September 2010