Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Bad weather, seamanship blamed for Pasha Bulker grounding: report

Bad weather, seamanship blamed for Pasha Bulker grounding: report

Posted Wed Jan 23, 2008 9:01am AEDT

The Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) has finished its draft report into the grounding of the Pasha Bulker off Newcastle, in the New South Wales Hunter, but expects to finetune the document before releasing the final paper in March.

NSW Maritime found the ship's grounding on Nobbys Beach was caused by horrendous weather conditions and poor seamanship by the ship's master.

The ATSB's probe is focusing on the conditions surrounding the event and the lengthy queue of ships off the Newcastle coast at the time.

A spokesman says the draft report will be sent to relevant stakeholders, including the Newcastle Port Corporation, allowing them to comment on the preliminary findings.


Hong Kong hydrofoils crash in fog

HONG KONG, China (AP) -- Two hydrofoils ferrying passengers between the Chinese territories of Hong Kong and Macau collided Friday night in heavy fog, seriously injuring 19 people, a Macau government spokesman said.


One of the damaged high-speed ferries docks in Macau.

The poor visibility was also blamed for a number of other maritime accidents in the region. Parts of China's southern coast were enveloped in fog due to a warm, humid maritime air stream.

The 10 men and nine women passengers seriously hurt in the Hong Kong-Macau collision suffered mainly head injuries and bone fractures that were not life-threatening, said Alex Che, a spokesman for the government of Macau. Another 114 passengers suffered lighter injuries, Che said.

"All the glass shattered and the front of the ship fell off," a male passenger, identified only by the surname Chan, told Hong Kong's Cable TV.

Wong Soi Man, director of Macau's Maritime Administration, said the accident's cause had not yet been determined, but "heavy fog must be one of the key factors."

The accident occurred closer to Macau and the injured were being treated there, he said.

In another incident, thick fog blanketed China's commercial center, Shanghai, where an unlicensed river ferry carrying 22 people capsized Friday, leaving 10 missing, China's official Xinhua News Agency reported.

The ferry, one of many that operate in the area without proper safety equipment or certification, sank near the city's Wusong pier shortly after the accident, Xinhua said.

And 66 people were rescued from a ferry that ran aground near the coastal city Zhuhai near Macau, Xinhua said.

Hours earlier, another high-speed ferry traveling west from Hong Kong to Macau and carrying more than 370 passengers hit a small fishing vessel, said Hong Kong Marine Department spokeswoman Daisy Lo.

No one was injured and both vessels continued their journeys.

Ferry operator Turbojet scaled back its services to Macau to once every half hour -- from its usual peak frequency of every five minutes -- and said travel time would take half an hour more than the usual one-hour journey.

The foggy weather slowed traffic on a key route that transports gamblers to booming casino enclave Macau, which surpassed the Las Vegas Strip in gaming revenue in 2006


m/v Sergiy Skadovskiy sunk in Azov sea - 1/19/2008 04:11

January 19, Azov sea – m/v Sergiy Skadovskiy sunk in 45.59.6N 036.47.7E between 06.00-08.00 LT. Crew evacuated at 02.40, total blackout, energy for pumps from tug Portovik. 06.10 – emergency pumps and salvage team evacuated, further salvage attempts believed futile. Icebreaker Kapitan Belousov with vessels convoy left scene for Kerch strait, tug Portovik standing by to monitor sinking. m/v Sergiy Skadovskiy was enroute from Mariupol port to Black sea with 3100 tonns of grain on board. No further details, but looks like vessel was holed while under icebreaker convoy, either by ice or by some other vessel.

Sergiy Skadovskiy – dwt 3346, built 1985 USSR, flag Ukraine, owner UKRAINIAN COMMERCIAL FLEET, IMO 8725058.



Beset in ice, some of the crew rejected evacuation - 1/20/2008 04:33

January 19, signal from EPIRB-406 – S&R plane from Khabarovsk spotted two non-propelled barges and two crafts beset in ice, with 14 people on board, all from gold mining private company. With mining cargo on board, they’ve been heading for Cape Odyan, 155 nm SW from Okhotsk port. Plane dropped food and other supplies. January 20 – helicopter from Nikolaevsk-on-Amur took on board 6 persons, others decided to stay with barges and crafts, maybe till spring time, waiting for clear water.

January 19, 08.50 LT – EPIRB-406 signal from 56.21N 140.13E (about 200 nm north off Nikolaevsk-on-Amur port). Area covered by ice 1 meter thick. Several vessels in the area directed to the scene, no communications, no radio alert. EPIRB-406 – owner unknown, last data 5-7 years old, former owner Sakhalin Dalso Co Ltd now unexisted. Regualr passenger flight Nikolaevsk-Okhotsk searched area, but spotted nothing. Signal loud and clear, air search under way.


DHS – National Response Framework

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) issued a news release stating that the National Response Framework (NRF), which replaces the National Response Plan, will come into effect 60 days after the official notice is published in the Federal Register. The NRF informs emergency management practitioners by explaining the operating structures and tools routinely used by first responders and emergency managers at all levels of government. It is designed to be scalable, flexible, and adaptable; always be in effect; and articulate clear roles and responsibilities among local, state, and federal officials. (1/22/08).