Only short time after the "Rauli N" allided with the wall of the large southern lock in Brunsbüttel on Apr 21, 2018, the "Geert K", enroute from Puerto MArin to Szczecin, allided with the small southern lock at 3.50 p.m. The ship was caught by the outgoing tide and was drifted against the steel tail fin of the gate which suffered slight damage as well as the cargo ship which was allowed to continue the voyage at 5.15 p.m. and berthed in Szczecin on Apr 22 at 11.40 p.m.
Nine months after the initial incident, the continued detention of the "Royal Arsenal" at the port of Umm Qasr in Iraq, was causing major concern and frustration to the owners, ship managers, and insurers. The ship had been in a collision with the dive support craft "Al Misbar" owned/operated by the GCPI (General Company for Ports of Iraq) ,which was being used to ferry port employees from an offshore oil terminal in August 2017. The "Royal Arsenal", had a compulsory Iraqi Pilot on board supervising the navigation. The smaller vessel overturned and many of the 23 passengers and eight crew were trapped inside. Despite the rescue efforts of the GCPI salvage teams, 21 personnel died.
Since the incident, no quantified claims have been filed at Court or requests for security presented and the vessel has been forced to remain at Umm Qasr. Iraq's Transport Minister, Kazem Finjan, has directed that compensation be paid to the victims' families, which in addition to a cash payment from the GCPI includes land for a new home and employment at the GCPI for a family member. Accrued retirement benefits will also be paid.
The families have made large unsubstantiated claims for additional compensation from the Royal Arsenal, whilst the GCPI have failed to quantify any of their alleged claims. The latter appears to be compounded due to the report that the reinsurers of the "Al Misbar" have raised issues in relation to how she was operated/managed as she was not a designated transportation vessel.
The "Royal Arsenal"’s master was detained pending further investigation and released on bail after three days.
Little substantive progress has been made before the local Courts and in appeals to the Court of Cassation in Baghdad and the owners were now commencing proceedings before ITLOS (International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea) in Hamburg based on breaches of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea by the Iraqi authorities.
The owners and West of England P&I Club want to settle all claims on a basis which reflects the merits and the failings of the GCPI. To date, discussions to date have not been successful since the demands of the claimants have far exceeded the value of the vessel.
The World’s Biggest Automated Port Terminal Opens In Shanghai
China’s massive new fully-automated port terminal in Shanghai has opened and will soon ship up to 136 million tonnes around the world every year.
Stage four of the Yangshan Deep Water Port began trial operations on Sunday after years of construction and development, and £1.37 billion, aimed at increasing China’s trade dominance.
Once fully operational the new terminal will be able to move 6.3 million standard 20-foot shipping containers a year, with the whole £8.5 billion port handling more than 40 million a year – most in the world.
The giant new addition covers 2.23 million square metres and has a 2,350-metre shoreline south of Donghai Bridge, which was built to service the port.
Automation of nearly all the terminal’s functions slashes labor cost by 70 percent and boosts handling efficiency by 50 percent.
UK ports operator Peel Ports Group and autonomous vessel firm ASV Global recently tested an autonomous shallow-draft survey boat at the Port of Liverpool. According to Peel Ports, it represents the first step in a partnership to explore the use of the technology at its other sites in the UK.
For the first test, the ASV-built autonomous boat C-Cat 3 carried out a multibeam echosounder survey near Brocklebank Dock, a terminal on the River Mersey north of Liverpool. The demonstration was successful, and Peel Ports is exploring the possibility of further uses for the survey technology. It has signed a formal MOU with ASV that will give the autonomous systems developer access to other Peel Ports facilities for further testing.