Maritime Casualties In The News


275 rescued after fire on Indonesian ferry
At least 16 die as panicked passengers jump into the sea

JAKARTA, Indonesia - A mother begged a cargo hand to take her 18-month-old daughter after fire engulfed an Indonesian ferry Thursday, then jumped into the sea along with hundreds of other passengers. Sixteen people died and scores were injured.

Heru, who goes by one name, said he tried to scale a rope with the toddler as smoke billowed around him, but was knocked into the water by a falling passenger. He saw the woman clinging to a water cooler and swam toward her.

“The baby was crying ’Mama! Mama! and she insisted I hand over the child,” he said. Fifteen minutes later, the two disappeared beneath the dark waves. “Now they’re gone.”
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Comment: More of the same old thing from the usual suspects. Ferries in this part of the world are as popular as they are essential, but they are not for the faint hearted!​
And the Napoli saga continues!

Napoli cargo washes up 100 miles from the ship

Tins of dried milk, cosmetics and nappies have washed up on beaches almost a hundred miles away from the grounded cargo ship MSC Napoli, according to coastguards.

Debris from the 62,000-tonne vessel has been found scattered on Bournemouth, Highcliffe and Christchurch beaches, in Dorset, and on the Isle of Wight in Hampshire.

Mark Clark, Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) spokesman, said: "None of it is proving a threat, there's no danger to the public. We are just advising people to inform the coastguard if they find anything.

"Some of the material on the beach on the Isle of Wight is covered in oil, which is why we are advising people not to touch it."
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Comment: Stay tuned for further developments. This mess is going to take a long time to clean up and the ship will likely be written off as a constructive total loss!​
A recent report says the Japanese whaler is now separated from the other two ships and is underway under her own power. Presumably she'll go home for repairs.

Reports say that more than 100 are still missing from the Indonesian ferry.
A small correction, as they say on the charts.

Guano and nitrates are totally different.

Guano is ancient bird droppings that have accumulated over many years. The stuff used to be brought from Chile, often on sailing ships. There's an old song about going "on a Limey to the Chinchas for guano."

Nitrates are chemicals, such as potassium or sodium nitrate. They have many uses. In the old days they were often needed for explosives. In most places, they are washed out of the ground by water, but in Chile they are found lying about in the Atacama Desert. The stuff was mined and taken to Europe for many years. Among the captains on the run was our old mate, Captain Lord, of the Nitrate Producers Steamship Co.

I understand modern industrial chemistry has ended the trade.
Not a casualty in the sense that we understand it. Just pirates grabbing the headlines. From

Pirates seize UN ship off Somalia

Pirates are reported to have hijacked a UN-chartered cargo ship delivering food aid to north-eastern Somalia.
The ship, the MV Rozen, had just delivered a cargo to Somalia's Puntland region when the pirates struck, a World Food Programme official said.

There have been no reports of demands from the pirates and it is not known if any of the 12 crew have been injured.
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From The Maritime Global Net:


Friday, 02 March 2007

A spill of about 42 gallons of intermediate fuel oil has sparked a major pollution response effort at the US port of Seattle. The Chinese bulk grain cargo ship, Songa Hua, spilt the oil into the bay early Wednesday morning while at anchor and refuelling from a barge operated by the Olympic Tug and Barge Company.

The Coast Guard and Washington State Department of Ecology are overseeing the response effort.
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From The Shipping Times:

Crew rescued from abandoned ship in storm

The Russian news agency ITAR-TAAS is reporting that 23 crewmen have been picked up in the Indian Ocean after they had to abandon ship.
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From the San Francisco Chronicle:

Cargo ship owner charged with negligence

03-03) 13:58 PST OAKLAND -- The owner of a bulk cargo ship has been charged in federal court in Oakland for allowing the vessel to cross the Atlantic Ocean with two large cracks that had been covered with tape and painted over, court records show.

Twilight Marine Ltd. is expected to enter a guilty plea Tuesday to a misdemeanor charge of grossly negligent operation of a vessel, according to court papers filed in U.S. District Court in Oakland. The company also is prepared to pay a fine and restitution, court records show.

The company's attorney, maritime lawyer John Giffin of San Francisco, did not immediately return a message seeking comment today.
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Coment: Tape and paint to cover cracks in the structure? doesn't this just make you want to book passage on this ship?​
From The Shipping Times:

Attempts to float grounded ship to begin

The US Coastguard reports that operations are scheduled to begin today to transfer coal from the bulk carrier MONTROSE which stranded in Chesapeake Bay this week.

The 712-foot cargo ship Montrose, carrying 74,215 metric tons of coal, ran soft aground Wednesday near Sharps Island, Md.
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A follow up story to the U.N. relief ship seized by pirates off Somalia.

Negotiations begin with pirates as ship is found

The UN-chartered ship that was seized by pirates last month, the mv ROZEN, has been found.

Negotiations are reportedly underway with four pirates on board the vessel near the port of Eyl in northern Somalia.

Still on board are the ship's crew but although the ship's owner is reported to have said that he has been allowed contact with the crew and they are well, a UN spokesperson still voiced fears for their safety
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Also, from China View:

28 sailors rescued from cargo ship aground in S China

BEIJING, March 6 (Xinhua) -- Twenty-eight Chinese sailors aboard a bulk cargo ship that ran aground on Monday near Shantou Harbor, in south China's Guangdong Province, have been rescued, according to the Ministry of Communications on Tuesday.

The ship was safely dragged back into open waters at 1:47 a.m. Tuesday.
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From The San Francisco Chronicle:

Owner admits sailing cargo ship with large cracks

(03-06) 12:52 PST OAKLAND -- The owner of a bulk cargo ship admitted in federal court in Oakland today that the company allowed the vessel to cross the Atlantic Ocean with two large cracks that had been covered with tape and painted over.

Twilight Marine Ltd. of Malta pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of grossly negligent operation of a vessel. Through its attorney, maritime lawyer John Giffin of San Francisco, the company also agreed today to pay a $50,000 fine and $100,000 in restitution during a hearing before U.S. Magistrate Wayne Brazil.

In September, the M/V Warrior, a 38,880-ton cargo ship, was crossing the Atlantic Ocean toward North America when sailors on board noticed several small cracks and rust holes in the starboard, or right side, deck, according to federal prosecutors.
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Comment: I suppose the owners could have tried to deny everything, but since they were caught red handed, I suppose they didn't want the magistrate to die laughing.​