Maritime Safety & Security News – 24 October 2009

October 24, 2009

21 missing as trawler sinks in Bangladesh
Hindustan Times
Twenty-one labourers were missing after the trawler in which they were travelling sank following a collision with another vessel in Bangladesh on Friday.

Vessel Carrying Fuel Caught Fire in East Java
Tempo Interaktif
One crew and one passenger reportedly missing while five crew survived the accident. No report on whether the boat was carrying more than one passenger

Fishing vessel towed to safety
The lifeboat took the vessel in tow, arriving safely back in port at hour later. The alarm was raised at 3.15am on Friday and the crew were back on dry land

Crew rescued as boat hits rocks
BBC News
The two crew of a commercial motor boat have been rescued off the coast of Anglesey after the vessel was smashed into rocks. The 27ft (8.2m) boat Jean M has

Italian Ship Rescues Drug Traffickers on High Seas
Latin American Herald Tribune
Due to the injuries they sustained in the accident, they were taken to a medical center, where they are recovering,” the PNC spokesman said.

Yacht dismasted by one ship, saved by another
Sail World (press release)
Carolina after a collision with a tanker which didn’t stop. Their dismasted yacht, floundering in nine-foot waves, was sighted by another cargo ship

Lifeboat rescues injured seaman
Northumberland Gazette
A CREW member aboard a survey ship had to be evacuated to hospital by the Amble lifeboat after suffering serious head injuries in heavy seas.

Nine-week toxic oil spill taking huge toll on sea life
Sydney Morning Herald
The spill began on August 21 after an accident on PTTEP Australasia’s offshore oil rig about 160 kilometres from the northwest coast.

Sunken ship – complaint filed
Mr. John filed the complaint after a preliminary investigation into the circumstances leading to the sinking of the vessel. The accused mentioned in the FIR ‘

Russian sailors stranded in Panama to return home
RIA Novosti
On Wednesday a court in Panama ordered for the vessel to be impounded. If the ship’s owner fails to settle the dispute with the sailors amicably and to pay

Tests of Belle crew members are clean
Louisville Courier-Journal
which is investigating the accident, and are required under federal maritime law and Coast Guard regulations for crew members aboard a sailing vessel

Ghana: These Boat Disasters Must Be Stopped
These lapses in safety measures on the lake are what partly informed the government and the Transport Ministry to set up the Ghana Maritime Authority (GMA). .


US drones protecting ships from Somali pirates
The Associated Press
Cyrus Mody, an expert on piracy at the London branch of the International Maritime Bureau, said he expects the drones will help ward off attacks by acting

Hijacked Chinese bulk carrier arrives off coast of Somalia
"The Hijacked Bulk Carrier, the DE XIN HAI, is confirmed to have arrived off the coast of Somalia and is now in the vicinity of Hobyo," the EU anti-piracy

Ella’s Pink Lady

Jessica Watson sails first 500 miles of planned circumnavigation – Part 3
As the subject of sleep has been a matter of discussion due to an earlier collision she experienced with a cargo ship before she even began this voyage

Off The Radar

Tenders to demolish historic ship

Tenders are being invited to demolish the world’s oldest surviving clipper ship which is scheduled for destruction at the Scottish Maritime Museum.

The City of Adelaide has been rotting away on the quayside at Irvine in Ayrshire since 1992.

Permission was given to demolish it after the maritime museum said it could not afford to pay for restoration work.

Bulgaria – A Man Resigned 3 – Twilight of Tolstoy

August 17, 2009


Part 1

Part 2

 image Foundered cargo ships Hera, Vanessa, Rezzak and Tolstoy share common characteristics. All were around 30 or more years old, carrying similar cargoes, two are known to have had low freeboard, all sank in the Black Sea/Sea of Azov, all departed in questionable weather, all were very serious casualties, and with one exception, official investigation reports have yet to be published or filed with the IMO.

Read the rest of this entry »

Important for MAC RSS subscribers

July 5, 2009

If you subscribed to MAC through a feed reader or on email more than a week or two ago you may not be getting the latest updates. We recommend that you register using the feed link below:

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Maritime Accident Safety News – 15 June 2009

June 15, 2009

Our regular safety news can be found here, at Maritime Accident Casebook Premium (Beta) You are not required to register at this point.

MAC Main Site Updates

May 3, 2009

Lifeboat D-Ring Alert

Swine Flu Advisory

Don’t Lose Your Head When the Job Changes

Got An SST?

Put The Tardis Next To The ECDIS?

Now For The Good News – Four Years No LTA For Raisis Rig

Protect The Pirates Out Of Existence

Oil and Gas Set Up Helicopter Task Group

Danish Seafarers Get Terror Compensation

Post-Alabama Maersk Maintains ‘No Guns’ Policy

Maersk Kithira Death – Staff Didn’t Appreciate Risk

Sitting On A Drive Shaft Could Damage Your Tackle

Subic Bay Beers All Round for US Captain’s Release

SAFEDOR Completes Safer Ships Project

Pirates, Alabama and the Jones Act

Step Change Reflects on Piper Alpha and 2008

Maersk: We Don’t Need Security

Time for the Q-ships return?

Fire Protection Updates

First 3D Used In Former USSR

NI Launches Career Development Project

New Book Supports MAC

May 1, 2009

If Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan had followed safety procedures much like today’s PSSR requirements he might have been the first to sail around the world, as it was, an underling, Sebastian Elcano took the honors. Just one of the bits of trivia you’ll find in Chew The Bones, Bob Couttie’s third book,now available on Amazon.

It won’t get you an STCW certificate but proceeds will go towards supporting Maritime Accident Casebook and its podcasts.

Says the blurb: “Take a time-travelling journey of a thousand years of adventure and romance as you explore the unknown highways, byways and strange ways of an almost forgotten world. Dip into a unique, eye-opening collection of true stories they didn’t tell you at school. In this world slaves get benefits worthy of a corporate highflier. A redhaired hard-to-handle Hong Kong-born Irish teenager marries a man determined to change his country’s destiny. England’s Queen Victoria is given the world’s most expensive wedding dress, made by Filipinos. The last cavalry charge in American history begins with a hangover as the first Japanese bombs drop on the Philippines. A Scots-American widow find a new purpose protecting and building lives for the indigenous Aeta people of the Zambales Mountains.”

Help support MAC, buy the book from Amazon here

Scientists Raise Alarm On Hydroxilic Acid Safety Hazard

April 1, 2009

MAC has learned that a team of Norwegian and French scientific experts working in a central Philippines university are to publish a paper regarding the hazards of seafarer exposure to hydroxilic acid. Copies of the paper have been distributed confidentially to the International Maritime Organisation, the US EPA and the European Union’s Maritime Safety Directorate.

Professor Lorf Liopa and Dr. Avril Poisson, both on secondment to the Unibersidad Parang-Tangaiyan in the Visayas have expressed concern about the presence of hydroxilic acid discovered in the bloodstreams of seafarers during medical examinations. Read More here

Main Site Updates

March 17, 2009

Time for another update on what’s appeared on our main site at

Donation Thanks

MAC Expands – The Best Known Voices In The Industry Could Be Yours

Is BO The Answer To Fatigue?

Upcoming Podcasts

Don’t Fall For Lousy Lighting

Mad Rock Gets Lifeboat Hook Award

Schatt-Harding – “hooks made of wrong steel”

How Not To Be A Crispy Welder

55th IASST International Safety Meet

Time To Make Fishing Safer – TSB Canada

MAIB Commends Saline Master, Crew

Mooring Injuries “Horrific”

Don’t Shiver Your Timber

Publication of Note: Understanding Mooring Line Incidents

MAIB Tired of Fatigue – “UK must go it alone”

NTSB On Cosco Busan: Unfit, Ineffective, Incompetent

Main Sites Updates

January 27, 2009

It’s been a while since our last up on what going on with our main site at so here’s something to keep you busy:

New Podcast – The Case Of the Rose Assassin

Das Boot Gets Last Bite

General Alarm – Hydrostatic Copy-Cats Can Kill

Ferry vs Lighthouse, Lighthouse Wins

VDR Failures

Generics – Are They Worth Ships They’re Sinking?

Beware of Tow Rope Twangs and Nut Showers

ORB Conviction Upheld – New Offence?

To IG Or Not To IG, That Is The Question

SOSY09 – Recommend a Risk Ready Reckoner

Engineer Scalded – Risks Not Mapped

IMB – Rise In Piracy “Unprecedented”

Pride of Canterbury: A Threesome With Bad Habits

Stay Alive – Check Your Meter

Freefall release fears shut platform

Shoot The Crew Says NEPIA

Good News – Iceland Null Point

Pivoting On A Point In A Paddling Pool

Think Positively Says HE-Alert

Cheating On A Chain Stretcher Could Send You To A Stretcher

MOB Cantara Preliminary Report Out

Stop, Step Back To Escape The Rose Assassin

SOSY09: Listening Post For Seafarers

MCIA Update

Website of Note: Maritime Security Centre – Horn of Africa

Son of A Bahamanian Seaman?

Confined Space Entry Deaths Nothing New

Flying Phantom: Three Dead Because Lessons not Learned

ECDIS and Incompetence

Arming Ships – The Blackwater Factor

Tug Man Gets Screwed

New Podcast – The Case of the Church Bell

October 27, 2008

Mariner’s Chapel in London’s oldest church displays the bell of the BP tanker British Trent, a memorial to the nine seafarers who died in a collision and fire off Belgium in 1993. Maritime Accident Casebook”s latest podcast explores why the lessons of the British Trent tragedy remain relevant fifteen years later and tests attitudes towards the criminalisation of seafarers.

Korean bulker carrier Western Winner powered into the port side of British Trent, which had a full cargo of 24,000 tones of gasoline, in thick fog on the morning of 3^rd June, 1993. Western Winner holed British Trent’s hull, spilling gasoline which caught fire. Firefighting on British Trent was hampered by a fire main damaged by the impact. Nine seafarers died of smoke inhalation and heat, no casualties were suffered by Western Winner.

Western Winner’s owners attempted to hamper the subsequent investigation. Belgian officials at first laid criminal charges against Western Winner’s master, but later withdrew them.

Says Bob Couttie, writer and narrator of the episode: “One comes away with a sense that even after all this time, there hasn’t been closure for those who lost friends and loved ones on British Trent, nor, perhaps for the survivors. If not for the courage and discipline aboard, the toll could have been far higher. That alone is an important lesson: Training, drills and discipline save lives.”

An investigation by Britain’s Maritime Accident Investigation Branch on behalf of Bermuda identified the cause of the incident as failure to comply with the International Regulations for the Prevention of Collisions at Sea. Western Winner proceeded at an unsafe speed in restricted visibility, did not keep an adequate watch, and there appears to have been no passage plan. There was also a failure to keep an adequate continuous radar watch on the bridge of British Trent.

“This case is a classic example of why colregs are so important to understand and implement,” says Couttie, “It’s also a warning not to make assumptions about what another vessel is going to do.”

Also touched on is the issue of the criminalisation of seafarers. An inquest in the UK found that the death of the victims was an “unlawful killing” by those in command of the Western Winner.

Says Couttie: ”There has to be considerable doubt about the competency of the master of the Western Winner. Some comments about the case suggest that the master should have been tried on criminal charges and punished. The fact is that a certificate of competency doesn’t mean that someone can do the job. I would ask whether those who put him in command without ensuring that he was capable of safe navigation should bear responsibility, too.”

The Case of the Church Bell is the final episode of the second series of Maritime Accident Casebook. The third series is now in pre-production.

Like all MAC podcasts, The Case Of The Church Bell reveals the circumstance around a real event through an audio podcast and online materials available for free at the Maritime Accident Casebook website, <>.

As with the preceding episodes, the podcast is backed by an illustrated online transcript that seafarers can read, discuss and share with their crewmates and other seafarers. Those with training and safety responsibilities can use the broadcasts and the transcripts freely.

Maritime Accident Casebook, MAC, is a unique, free, informal educational resource, supported by donations, for seafarers and maritime trainers which seeks to empower seafarers through knowledge to keep themselves alive and their ships safe. MAC encourages seafarers to discuss lessons learned from real-life events and apply them to their own vessels and working practices to create a safety-conscious community.


The Case of the Church Bell