TT Club says still more needs to be done to ensure container safety

By Alexander Whiteman

As the IMO’s sub-committee on Carriage of Cargoes and Containers met in London during mid-September, TT Club is demanding urgent action on container safety. The major problem is mis-declared dangerous goods, it says, and suggests it leads to a major container fire every 60 days on average.

Risk management Director Peregrine Storrs-Fox said: “Achieving integrity across the web of the supply chain is a big ask and we’re in little doubt a comprehensive result will take time to achieve. “However, many industry bodies are making significant strides, particularly in the areas of dangerous goods identification, declaration and handling, as well as container weighing and packing. (more…)

Marine insurers demand better protection for containerships against fire

By Mike Wackett

The International Union of Marine Insurance (IUMI) has warned that Solas firefighting regulations for container vessels are “inadequate” – particularly as ships have grown in recent years. IUMI said the regulations were developed for general cargo vessels, where freight is stored openly in holds, and are “not suitable for a modern containership”. It added: “With the growing size of container vessels and a recent spate of fires on board these ships, IUMI is concerned that current firefighting provisions are insufficient.” IUMI listed high-profile examples, including the mid-Atlantic blaze on the 6,732 TEU MSC Flaminia in July 2012, which took the lives of three crew members and resulted in a constructive total loss of the ship.

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Shipping has ‘collective blindness’ and must improve its cyber security

By Alexander Whiteman

Shipping remains blind to the threat posed by insufficient cyber security. And its continuing failure to address the problem could have a huge economic impact, according to Futurenautics Chief Executive Kate Adamson. She believes the biggest threat is the industry’s critical dependence on technology, which makes it a prime target for cyber criminals.

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Speed restrictions imposed in Gulf of St. Lawrence – Chamber of Marine Commerce comments

The federal Minister of Transport, Marc Garneau, and Fisheries and Oceans Minister Dominic LeBlanc, announced on August 11 that, in order to help reduce or eliminate deaths of North Atlantic right whales in the Gulf of St. Lawrence through collisions or other unintentional contacts with commercial vessels, the government is imposing a temporary mandatory speed reduction for vessels of 20 metres or more in length to a maximum of 10 knots when travelling in the western Gulf of St. Lawrence from the Quebec north shore to just north of Prince Edward Island. These measures are in addition to other measures already taken to reduce the possibility of whales becoming entangled in fishing gear.

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The case of Clipper Adventurer: Between a rock and a hard place

The case of Clipper Adventurer: Between a rock and a hard place

By Kiley Sampson and K. Joseph Spears

On January 27 2017, Mr. Justice Shawn Harrington of the Federal Court handed down an interesting decision that examined potential liability of the government of Canada involving the grounding of adventure cruise vessel M/V Clipper Adventurer which ran aground on an “uncharted rock” in Coronation Gulf in the Canadian Arctic on August 27, 2010. Before his appointment to the bench, the judge was an experienced admiralty law practitioner. This article will examine both the findings of the Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) and the Federal Court decision with respect to liability of the vessel owner. The grounding, and the subsequent TSB Marine Investigation and Federal Court decision are of interest to students of Arctic shipping. The grounding provides an insight into issues with respect to government of Canada’s obligations to provide Arctic shipping infrastructure and hydrographic charting, and the liability of vessel owners. It has been said that litigation is “an expensive way to learn.” This was a costly learning lesson.

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Amazon is fined again: for trying to fly lithium-ion batteries

By Alex Lennane

If Amazon really wants to be taken seriously in the transport industry, it is going to have to learn – and teach – the regulations on the shipment of dangerous goods. Last week the UK’s CAA fined it £65,000 for attempting to fly lithium-ion batteries and flammable aerosols. Amazon’s lawyer argued that the court should have some perspective, as the cargoes were merely “everyday household items”.

The fine, a drop in the ocean for the internet giant, follows similar violations outlined by the FAA in June. The FAA proposed a $350,000 fine after a chemical leaked through packaging, endangering nine UPS employees. The FAA, which claimed Amazon was not training its staff properly, said the company “has a history of violating the Hazardous Materials Regulations.” From February 2013 to September 2015, Amazon was found to have violated such regulations 24 times. Just two weeks later the FAA proposed yet another fine, of $130,000, for violating hazardous material regulations. The FAA is seeking some $1.3 million in fines from the e-tailer in total, noted Reuters.

Reprinted courtesy of The Loadstar (www.theloadstar.co.uk )