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Displaying items by tag: Shipping

#SHIPPING – At a hearing yesterday at Southampton Magistrates Court the German owners of the Antigua and Barbuda registered cargo vessel 'Katja' pleaded guilty to the overloading of their vessel which had arrived in Liverpool laden with rock salt from the St. Lawrence Seaway, Canada in November 2010.

The vessel was loaded to its marks with rock salt and sailed from Goderich to arrive at the Manchester Ship Canal on the 23rd November 2010. Rock salt was in high demand to treat UK highways at this time.

Katja Ellesmere.sized

The 'Katja' - Photo: courtesy of Maritime and Coastguard Agency

As the vessel entered the River Mersey, the pilot on another passing vessel noticed that the Plimsoll Line and load lines were not visible and the vessel appeared very low in the water.  When the vessel arrived in the Queen Elizabeth II Dock it was inspected by MCA Port State Control Officers who found that the load line that marks the safety limit of the vessel was submerged by 39.5 cm.

Katja Schiffahrtsges Gmbh of Haren, Ems, Germany, owner of the ship Katja, was fined £28015 plus costs of £5000 awarded to the MCA.

In summing up the Magistrates stated "We share the Maritime and Coastguard Agency's view of the seriousness of the case, however accept that the overloading was not for gain. We have also considered the early plea of guilty and have reduced the fine of £42000 accordingly.

Simon Milne, from the Maritime and Coastguard Agency said:

"Since the good work of Samuel Plimsoll, the application and enforcement of load line marks have prevented the loss of many vessels and have saved the lives of many seafarers.

Published in Ports & Shipping

#PORTSDublin Port Company today published trade statistics for 2011. Total throughput in 2011 was broadly in line with 2010, down by only 0.1% to 28.1m tonnes. Within this, however, exports continued to grow and were up 2.8% in the year at 11.5m tonnes.

2011 trade statistics summary:

Total throughput – 28.1m tonnes, down 0.1%

Exports – 11.5m tonnes up 2.8%

Imports – 16.6m tonnes down 2.0%

Bulk Liquid – 3.6m tonnes, down 4.7%

Bulk Solid – 1.6m tonnes, up 10.8%

Unitised trade now accounts for 81% of Dublin Port's business. During 2011, Ro-Ro freight volumes were virtually unchanged at 725,000 units. In contrast, Lo-Lo volumes fell by 5.1% to 526,000 TEU.

Ferry passenger numbers fell by 5.6% to 1.7m. This follows a record year in 2010 when numbers were boosted by the impact of weather and ash clouds. Compared to 2009, passenger numbers were up 11.1%.

With 1.7m ferry passengers moving through the port, Dublin Port is behind only Dublin Airport and Cork Airport as a national tourism gateway.

The cruise liner side of Dublin Port's business saw a 7.5% increase in cruise passengers. During 2011, 87 cruise ships brought over 135,000 passengers and crew to Dublin.

Commenting on the trade figures, Eamonn O'Reilly, Dublin Port Company's Chief Executive said:

"Trade levels at Dublin Port were steady in 2011 which is a robust performance given the large (6.1%) increase in the port's volumes in the previous year.

"Whereas export volumes have continued to grow and are now 0.5m tonnes higher than they were in 2007, the poor performance of the domestic economy has resulted in a continued decline in imports. These are now 3.4m tonnes lower than they were in 2007.

"Notwithstanding the poor performance of the economy we are continuing to plan for the future and will shortly be launching our Masterplan 2012 to 2040. Dublin remains the largest and most important port on the island and our Masterplan is intended to ensure we continue to provide vital port capacity particularly as the economy returns to growth in coming years.

"With all the difficulties in the economy we are still only 9% behind where we were at the peak in 2007 and we believe that any pick-up in domestic demand will quickly translate into growth in import volumes. The Masterplan will ensure we stay ahead of future growth in demand for decades to come".

Published in Dublin Port

#NEWS UPDATE - Minister for the Marine Simon Coveney has launched a public consultation process on harnessing the potential of Ireland's vast marine resources.

Our Ocean Wealth is calling for input into how Ireland can best capitalise on the trillion-euro global market for marine products and services, from seafood and tourism to shipping, oil and gas, renewable ocean energy and marine science.

Launching the consultation, Minister Coveney said: "We need to change the way we in Ireland think about the sea and look for new opportunities to harness the potential of our 220-million-acre marine resource.

"This government is determined to generate the momentum to drive forward a new era of sustainable economic development across the maritime sectors - we must avail of these opportunities to assist in our recovery. We want your help to shape our plan, to shape our future and to assist in our drive towards our nation's economic recovery."

The consultation process is a step towards developing an Integrated Marine Plan for Ireland intended to grow the percentage of GDP generated by the country's marine resource, which covers an area 10 times the size of Ireland's land mass.

The minister added: "We need an Integrated Marine Plan to harness our ocean wealth, get the environment right for investment and use the potential of our marine economy to create jobs in a sustainable manner."

The consultation phase will be open until 31 March with an aim to publish the Integrated Marine Plan during the summer. For more details visit www.ouroceanwealth.ie.

Published in News Update

 

#CORK – January 2012 kicked off to a good start for the Port of Cork with over 76,000 tons of dry bulk animal feeds unloaded in one week, a record for the Port. The high quantity of feed which was unloaded as part cargo from five large bulk carriers, gives a welcome boost to the quantities of dry bulk material handled by the Port of Cork.

In the Republic of Ireland bulk cargoes have seen an increase of 2% across all ports and this growth is a reflection of the growing confidence in the agricultural sector.

Commercial Manager, Captain Michael McCarthy said: "Unloading over 76,000tonnes of dry bulk animal feeds at Ringaskiddy Deep-water Terminal in five days is an excellent boost for the port. It demonstrates the port's capabilities when it comes to handling large ships with efficient and safe turnaround times. Many of the main feed importers are utilising the Port of Cork's deep-water capacity with Panamax vessels arriving fully laden to lighten before proceeding to other Irish or UK Ports"

Published in Port of Cork

#SHIPPING - The Greek-owned cargo ship which ran aground off New Zealand three months ago - described as the country's worst maritime disaster - has split in two in heavy seas.

In a scene thankfully avoided closer to home, with the successful tranfer of 54,000 tonnes of vacuum gas oil from the damaged tanker Germar Companion in Belfast Lough, rough conditions off the New Zealand coast have caused the stern section of the Rena to snap off.

As many as 300 containers were washed overboard, polluting the water with milk powder and other debris, and fears are growing of a new oil spill in the coming days posing a threat to marine wildlife.

According to BBC News, hundreds of tonnes of fuel have spilled into the sea since the ship first ran aground at the Atrolabe Reef off North Island on 5 October, causing the deaths of hundreds of seabirds.

Though more than 1,100 tonnes of oil have been removed from the stricken vessel, some 385 tonnes remain aboard.

BBC News has more on the story HERE.

Published in Ports & Shipping

#SHIPPING – The successful transfer of 54,305 tonnes of vacuum gas oil from the vessel Genmar Companion to the BW Seine in Belfast Lough is now complete.

The Genmar Companion had been sheltering off the Copeland Islands since reporting a crack on its deck on 16 December. In order for repairs to take place in Belfast Harbour it was necessary to remove the cargo of oil in Belfast Lough by ship to ship transfer; due to there being no shore reception facilities in Belfast Harbour for a tanker of this size. The operation to transfer the vacuum gas oil was delayed several times due to the extreme weather, but was able to commence yesterday (Friday 6 January).

Hugh Shaw, The Secretary of State's Representative (SOSREP) Maritime Salvage and Intervention, said:

"I am delighted that the ship to ship transfer operation has now been successfully completed, the exclusion zone that was in place will be removed at midnight tonight. I would like to take this opportunity to offer my thanks to all concerned with the operation. In particular I would like to thank Fendercare and the masters and crew of both the Genmar Companion and BW Seine for their professionalism in carrying out the transfer in extremely difficult weather conditions experienced over the past week. In addition the operation could not have taken place without the support of the ship owners/operators, Belfast Harbour, Svitzer Towage and the Maritime and Coastguard Agency.

Finally, I would like to thank the Northern Ireland Environment Agency and Northern Ireland Assembly for supporting the decision to carry out the operation in Belfast Lough, which prevented any further risk to the Genmar Companion or the environment had it been necessary for the damaged ship to seek an alternative place of refuge in less sheltered waters."

Alex Attwood, Northern Ireland Environment Minister, said:

'I think we are all relieved that the operation has now been concluded successfully and that there has been no damage to the Northern Ireland coastline, one of our most beautiful assets.  There have been considerable challenges in managing an operation of this nature during the stormy conditions we have been having.  I would like to thank the Captains and crew of both vessels who worked throughout the night to achieve a successful outcome.  I would also like to commend the Secretary of State's Representative, Hugh Shaw, for his thoroughness and patience in handling this incident.  At all stages he has kept both me and my staff fully appraised of the developments in our combined efforts to ensure that our marine environment was protected.  Most importantly, I am delighted that the environmental sensitivities were recognised and took precedence over commercial considerations throughout the incident."

Published in Ports & Shipping

#GENMAR – After delays due to bad weather, the operation to remove 54,304 tonnes of Vacuum Gas Oil from the merchant vessel Genmar Companion is expected commence imminently (6th January).

Both ships are currently being manoeuvred together by tugs and are being held side- by-side 1.5miles out in Belfast Lough. The cargo is transferred from one to the other using specialist equipment.

The operation to berth, make lines secure and conduct final checks will take several hours before the actual transfer of the oil begins.

The operation to offload the cargo to the tanker BW Seine is expected to take between 24 and 36 hours. For the duration of the operation there will be a one- mile exclusion zone around the Genmar Companion and BW Seine to give the tugs a safe working area.

Published in Ports & Shipping
Tagged under

#SHIPPING - The transfer of hazardous cargo from the stricken tanker at the entrance to Belfast Lough has been delayed yet again due to winds nearing hurricane strength.

The Belfast Telegraph reports that the Genmar Conpanion - which was redirected to Belfast after reporting a cracked hull en route from Rotterdam to New York - will remain sheltering off the Copeland Islands until the weather improves.

As previously reported on Afloat.ie, the ship-to-ship transfer of 54,000 tonnes of vacuum gas oil was originally scheduled to take place on 31 December last, but the task was pushed back as the receiving ship, BW Seine, was delayed by weather in the North Sea.

It had then been hoped to begin the transfer early yesterday with the receiving ship's arrival, but the strong storm-force winds that have increasingly battered Ireland in the last 36 hours put paid to those plans.

Ship-to-ship transfers can take place in wind speeds of up to 35 knots, but yesterday the wind speed in Belfast Lough was reported as more than double that.

Hugh Shaw, the NI Secretary of State's representative for maritime salvage and intervention, told the Belfast Telegraph: "As soon as we have a window to do the ship-to-ship transfer safely we will take it.

"Winds have been dropping a bit, but it looks unlikely the operation will take place on Wednesday."

Published in Ports & Shipping

#SHIPPING – After delays due to bad weather, the operation to remove 54,304 tonnes of Vacuum Gas Oil from the merchant vessel Genmar Companion is now scheduled to commence later today (2nd January).  The offload tanker BW Seine has now arrived on scene and is anchored close to the Genmar Companion in Belfast Lough.

The Genmar Companion has been sheltering off the Copeland Islands at the entrance to Belfast Lough since 16 December. It was 40 miles west of Tory Island, Co. Donegal, on its journey from Rotterdam to New York, when the Master reported a crack on its upper deck. This crack did not appear to extend to any of the oil cargo holding structures but, as a precautionary measure, the vessel's Master chose to seek both shelter and advice before continuing passage.

The Bermudan-flagged product tanker made its way to the Lough to enable surveyors to inspect the ship. The inspection, by the owners, a representative of the classification society (American Bureau of Shipping) and the MCA took place on 18 December.

Following this inspection all parties agreed that, as a precautionary measure, the cargo should be removed and the ship repaired. As there are no shore reception facilities at Belfast Harbour for a tanker of this size the only option is to transfer the cargo to another vessel (known as Ship To Ship Transfer).

Hugh Shaw, The Secretary of State's Representative for Maritime Salvage and Intervention said:

"The Ship to Ship transfer operation was originally scheduled to commence on the 31 December, but was delayed primarily due to poor weather conditions experienced by BW Seine en route from Sweden to Northern Ireland. It is also essential that the operation does not impact on the day to day operations of Belfast Harbour.

Subject to availability of tugs, and providing conditions are suitable, both vessels will be placed alongside each other later today and the actual oil transfer will commence shortly thereafter.

This ship to ship transfer will be carried out by Fendercare Marine and the process is expected to take approximately 24-36 hours.

On completion of the operation the Genmar Companion will enter Belfast Harbour for repairs."

Northern Ireland Environment Minister, Alex Attwood, said:

"I have been advised that the transfer operation will be started later today, weather permitting.  Over the period of this incident, I have been actively seeking reassurances that there is no threat to our marine environment.  It is good to see that the plan is now coming together, despite the weather over the last few days.  I am continuing to keep a close eye on all the developments.  My officials are working closely with the Maritime and Coastguard Agency and are keeping me fully briefed."

Published in Ports & Shipping
Tagged under

#SHIPPING - The transfer of cargo from the damaged oil tanker sheltering at the entrance to Belfast Lough has been posponed for at least two more days.

As previously reported on Afloat.ie, the 228-metre Germar Companion - which is carrying 54,000 tonnes of vacuum gas oil - was redirected to Belfast after reporting a cracked hull en route from Rotterdam to New York.

The merchant vessel has been sheltering off the Copeland Islands since 16 December, where an official examination recommended removal of the cargo.

Today (31 December 2011) had been the scheduled start date for the move of the tanker's hazardous cargo by ship-to-ship tranfer. But the move has been delayed as the second ship, the BW Seine, is still en route to Belfast Lough.

"It is currently in the North Sea and could take another two days before it reaches the vessel and starts to transfer the cargo," a coastguard spokesperson told the Belfast Telegraph.

The transfer will be managed by specialist company Fendercare Marine in the lough, and could take between 24 and 36 hours. Once finished, the Germar Companion will sail into Belfast for repairs.

Published in Ports & Shipping
Page 6 of 9

The Half Ton Class was created by the Offshore Racing Council for boats within the racing band not exceeding 22'-0". The ORC decided that the rule should "....permit the development of seaworthy offshore racing yachts...The Council will endeavour to protect the majority of the existing IOR fleet from rapid obsolescence caused by ....developments which produce increased performance without corresponding changes in ratings..."

When first introduced the IOR rule was perfectly adequate for rating boats in existence at that time. However yacht designers naturally examined the rule to seize upon any advantage they could find, the most noticeable of which has been a reduction in displacement and a return to fractional rigs.

After 1993, when the IOR Mk.III rule reached it termination due to lack of people building new boats, the rule was replaced by the CHS (Channel) Handicap system which in turn developed into the IRC system now used.

The IRC handicap system operates by a secret formula which tries to develop boats which are 'Cruising type' of relatively heavy boats with good internal accommodation. It tends to penalise boats with excessive stability or excessive sail area.

Competitions

The most significant events for the Half Ton Class has been the annual Half Ton Cup which was sailed under the IOR rules until 1993. More recently this has been replaced with the Half Ton Classics Cup. The venue of the event moved from continent to continent with over-representation on French or British ports. In later years the event is held biennially. Initially, it was proposed to hold events in Ireland, Britain and France by rotation. However, it was the Belgians who took the ball and ran with it. The Class is now managed from Belgium. 

At A Glance – Half Ton Classics Cup Winners

  • 2017 – Kinsale – Swuzzlebubble – Phil Plumtree – Farr 1977
  • 2016 – Falmouth – Swuzzlebubble – Greg Peck – Farr 1977
  • 2015 – Nieuwport – Checkmate XV – David Cullen – Humphreys 1985
  • 2014 – St Quay Portrieux – Swuzzlebubble – Peter Morton – Farr 1977
  • 2013 – Boulogne – Checkmate XV – Nigel Biggs – Humphreys 1985
  • 2011 – Cowes – Chimp – Michael Kershaw – Berret 1978
  • 2009 – Nieuwpoort – Général Tapioca – Philippe Pilate – Berret 1978
  • 2007 – Dun Laoghaire – Henri-Lloyd Harmony – Nigel Biggs – Humphreys 1980~
  • 2005 – Dinard – Gingko – Patrick Lobrichon – Mauric 1968
  • 2003 – Nieuwpoort – Général Tapioca – Philippe Pilate – Berret 1978

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