Headlines: DOJ – mate charged with maritime manslaughter; FMC – increased financial responsibility for cruise operators; BOEMRE – offshore wind energy development; USCG – GPS regional meeting; MARAD – VISA open season; USCG – Cook Inlet RCAC; Cobscook Bay, Maine – hydrokinetic energy; NOAA – two Great Lakes ship wrecks discovered; House – hearing on leveraging emerging homeland security technologies; House – bill introduced re OCS facilities inspection fees; House – resolution introduced re South China Sea dispute; Court – implied theory of workmanlike performance; IMO – MEPC 62 adopts energy efficiency standards; EC – incorporation of sulphur dioxide standards; Australia – commercial vessel safety consolidation; and UK – Coastguard modernization.
July 18, 2011
Bryant’s Maritime Blog
Bryant’s Maritime Consulting - 4845 SW 91st Way - Gainesville, FL 32608-8135 - USA
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. Searching for the elusive Higgs bison.
DOJ – mate charged with maritime manslaughter
The Department of Justice (DOJ) issued a news release stating that the former mate of the towing vessel Caribbean Sea has been charged under the maritime manslaughter statute with misconduct causing a death. The defendant, who has entered into a plea agreement to plead guilty, was towing a barge on the Delaware River near Philadelphia on July 7, 2010. He was distracted from his duties while using a cellular telephone and a laptop computer and failed to see an amphibious passenger vessel anchored in the river. The barge being towed by the tug collided with the passenger vessel, causing the death of two passengers. (7/14/11).
FMC – increased financial responsibility for cruise operators
The Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) issued a new release stating that the Commission voted 3-2 to initiate a rulemaking to increase the financial responsibility required of cruise operators for performance from the current $15 million to $30 million to account for inflation and changes within the industry. The increase would be phased in over two years and smaller cruise lines would be eligible for credit for other forms of financial assurance. (7/14/11).
BOEMRE – offshore wind energy development
The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation, and Enforcement (BOEMRE) posted the remarks of Director Michael Bromwich delivered at the bureau’s Atlantic Wind Energy Workshop in Herndon, Virginia. He explained the role of BOEMRE in offshore wind energy development. (7/14/11).
USCG – GPS regional meeting
The USCG Navigation Center (NAVCEN) posted a notice stating that the CGSIC US States and Local Government Subcommittee will host a regional meeting on August 24 in Sacramento. Topics on the agenda include US GPS policy and international cooperation activities; the nationwide differential GPS project; and GPS applications. (7/15/11).
MARAD – VISA open season
The Maritime Administration (MARAD) issued a notice announcing open season for enrollment in the Voluntary Intermodal Sealift Agreement (VISA). This is the only planned enrollment period for carriers to join the VISA program and derive benefits for DOD peacetime contracts during the time frame of October 1, 2011 through September 30, 2012. 76 Fed. Reg. 41861 (July 15, 2011).
USCG – Cook Inlet RCAC
The US Coast Guard issued a notice stating that it received an application for recertification by the Cook Inlet Regional Citizens’ Advisory Council (RCAC). Comments on this application should be submitted by September 1. 76 Fed. Reg. 42134 (July 15, 2011).
Cobscook Bay, Maine – hydrokinetic power
The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) issued a notice stating that it received from Ocean Renewable Power Company, LLC a notice of intent to file an application for a license for a hydrokinetic pilot project to be built in Cobscook Bay, Maine. 76 Fed. Reg. 42122 (July 15, 2011).
NOAA – two Great Lakes shipwrecks discovered
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) issued a news release stating that Project Shiphunt has discovered two shipwrecks in waters of northeastern Lake Huron. The schooner M.F. Merrick sank in 1889 with the loss of five lives. The freighter Etruria sank in 1905. (7/13/11).
House – hearing on leveraging emerging homeland security technologies
The Subcommittee on Oversight, Investigations & Management of the House Committee on Homeland Security conducted a hearing on leveraging homeland security technologies. Mr. Charles Edwards, Acting Inspector General, Department of Homeland Security (DHS), testified concerning problems with the Department’s acquisition processes. Mr. David Maurer, Government Accountability Office (GAO) testified concerning shortcomings in the acquisition and development of new technologies. Mr. Rafael Borras, DHS testified concerning enhancements to the Department’s acquisition system. Dr. Tara O’Toole, DHS, testified concerning the role of the DHS Science & Technology Directorate in the acquisition process. Mr. Jim Williams, TechAmerica, testified concerning the technology industry’s perspective of the DHS acquisition process. Mr. Marc Pearl, Homeland Security & Defense Business Council, testified concerning DHS procurement policies and procedures. Mr. Scott Amey, Project on Government Oversight, testified that the Department should increase its usage of the competitive bidding process. (7/15/11).
House – bill introduced re OCS facility inspection fees
Representative Markey (D-MA) introduced a bill (H.R. 2655) to amend the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act to direct the Secretary of the Interior to establish and collect fees for inspections of Outer Continental Shelf facilities, and for other purposes. Official text of the bill has not yet been posted. (7/15/11).
House – resolution introduced re South China Sea dispute
Representative Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL) introduced a resolution (H. Res. 352) calling for a peaceful and collaborative resolution of maritime territorial disputes in the South China Sea and its environs and other maritime areas adjacent to the East Asian mainland. (7/15/11).
Court – implied theory of workmanlike performance
The US Court of Appeals for the First Circuit ruled that a vessel owner may only recover from a ship repairer under an implied warranty theory if the alleged breach is shown to have caused the owner’s injury. In the instant case, plaintiff purchased a used motorboat from defendant in an “as is” condition. Commencing about five months later, the boat suffered a series of breakdowns. Each time, plaintiff brought the boat back to defendant for repairs. Each time, the boat would operate properly for a few months and then break down again, generally in a different manner than before. After three years of this cycle, plaintiff brought suit against defendant alleging, among other things, breach of the duty of workmanlike performance. As evidence, plaintiff relied on the fact that the boat failed to operate properly despite defendant’s repair work. The court ruled that this was insufficient to prove that defendant’s work was substandard and that such substandard work caused the damage claimed. Fairest-Knight v. Marine World Distributors, No. 10-1409 (1st Cir., July 15, 2011).
IMO – MEPC 62 adopts energy efficiency standards
The IMO issued a news release stating that the 62nd session of Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) has concluded. Mandatory measures to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases (GHGs) from international shipping have been adopted. An Energy Efficiency Design Index (EEDI) will be required of new ships. All ships will be required to develop a Ship Energy Efficiency Management Plan (SEEMP). (7/15/11).
EC – incorporation of sulphur dioxide standards
The European Commission (EC) issued a press release stating that it proposes to incorporate into EU law the provisions of MARPOL Annex VI relating to sulphur dioxide standards, including those relating to use of low sulphur fuel. (7/15/11).
Australia – commercial vessel safety consolidation
The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) issued a media release stating that consultations to establish a national system for commercial vessel safety oversight have been held in Sydney, Freemantle, and Darwin. Further meetings are scheduled for Canberra, Sydney, Hobart, Adelaide and Port Lincoln. (7/14/11).
UK – Coastguard modernization
The UK Department for Transport (DfT) issued a press release announcing changes to modernize the Coastguard. A Maritime Operations Centre (MOC) will be established in Southampton/Portsmouth, with a back-up MOC at Dover. There will be eight sub-centres (operating on a 24 hour basis) at: Falmouth, Milford Haven, Holyhead, Belfast, Stornoway, Shetland, Aberdeen, and Humber, as well as a small unit in London. (7/14/11).
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 2011