Marine accident round-up : 15th February 2019

Cargo ship Solomon Trader (IMO 9075670) was pushed aground during poor weather in the Kangava Bay off Rennel Island (local name Mugaba), Solomon Islands, during the evening of February 4th. The ship had anchored in the bay and had been loading bauxite from a nearby mine since late January. The reef on which she was lodged was likely to have been damaged. Salvage work was hampered by ongoing rough weather. Environmentalists feared that the grounding of the ship could bring more damage to a marine protected area. 1994-built, Hong Kong-flagged, 38,779 gt Solomon Trader is owned and managed by King Trader Ltd of Hong Kong. ISM manager is Smart-Trans Shipping Co Ltd of Jiangsu, China.

MS Drebkau, which ran aground on the Elbe near Coswig on February 11th, remained stuck on February 12th because of a low water level. It was hoped that the water level might increase sufficiently by February 15th that the ship could free herself. No pollution was reported and the barge was stuck outside the fairway so no problems for shipping traffic were expected. An anchor of the barge had become caught in a tractor tyre during the afternoon of February 11th, causing a turning manoeuvre to fail because the anchor did not grip, and the ship went adrift onto the gravel bar. The master had refused the assistance of a pusher boat, saying that he hop to be able to refloat without external help.

Palletized cargo ship Maraya (IMO 7514517) suffered a technical failure at Valletta, Malta, on February 8th. Permission to depart was withdrawn by the harbour master until the completion of permanent repairs. A state surveyor attended onboard in order to verify the repair status. Earlier this week repairs were still being carried out by the crew at the berth in the French Creek. 1976-built, 640 gt Maraya is owned by Alwefaq Ltd care of United Group Management of Famagusta, Cyprus.

Four weeks after fires broke out on the Maestro and Candy (aka Venice) during what was reported as a ship-to-ship transfer of liquefied gas in the Black Sea, burning continues. Russian tug Mercury periodically cools the anchored ships, waiting for the fire to burn itself out, which it was thought might take another week or two. One of the tankers has drifted into the territorial waters of Russia, while the second was located nearby in neutral waters. The 12 rescued crew members were discharged from the city hospital on Jan 25, the next day they left the Crimea. The USA has claimed that since 2016 the ships have been supplying fuel to Syria.

A small supply and personnel vessel with three Indonesian crew members capsized and sank in Singapore territorial waters, according to Singapore’s Maritime and Port Authority (MPA) on Thursday. The incident was said to be near where a similar incident occurred a month ago. All three crew members aboard the vessel were reported by the MPA to be safe, with no injuries or oil pollution reported. The incident is being investigated. The Dominica-flagged sank early on February 14th local time in the westbound lane of the Traffic Separation Scheme, about 3nm from Pedra Branca. The incident happened in one of the world’s busiest shipping lanes, and the MPA said that it had had “issued navigational broadcasts asking ships to navigate with caution in the vicinity of the incident.”

Container ship APL Vancouver (IMO 9597472) was underway east of the Gulf of Siam, destined to Singapore, ETA February 15th and escorted by Singapore flagged tug Lanpan 34. The ship had left Vietnamese waters on February 12th after the completion of salvage and firefighting operations, followed by surveys by the salvage team and class inspections. General Average has been declared, with the number of damaged or destroyed containers yet unknown. Ardent Marine was reportedly contracted for the salvage on LOF terms. 2013-built, Singapore-flagged, 109,712 gt APL Vancouver is owned by CMB Ocean 1 Leasing Co Pte Ltd care of manager APL Co Pte Ltd of Singapore. ISM manager is CMA CGM International Shipping of Singapore. It is entered with North of England Club on behalf of APL Co Pte Ltd. It is entered for H&M with Norwegian Hull Club, with Gard AS having a subscription position.