Marine accident round-up : 4th October 2019

Cargo ship Habib Express (IMO 9196230 ran aground with a cargo of containers on the coast of the small island Alto Velo, southwest of La Beata at the southern coast of the Dominican Republic, during the morning of September 12th. The DR Navy command dispatched patrol boats to assist the crew. As of October 1st the ship remained aground. Shipping company Antillean Marine, representative of the ship in the Dominican Republic, in combination with the Navym has hired a private company to tow the ship to the East Haina dock. 1999-built, Tanzania-flagged, 2,035 gt Habib Express is owned by Trans-Habib S De RL care of manager Americas Marine Management Services Inc of Miami, Florida, USA. It is entered with Thomas Miller Specialty on behalf of Americas Marine.

White smoke was seen coming from tankship Stolt Groenland (IMO 9414072) during the morning of October 1st. Port workers were evacuated in case of another explosion. Fire authorities were investigating the possibility of polymerization of the chemicals remaining on board the vessel, which might have been the cause of the smoke. The Minister of Maritime Affairs and Fisheries has also visited the incident site. A typhoon is incoming; in response the ministry has dispatched two tugs in case the vessel needed to be relocated to a safer location. 2009-built, Cayman Islands-flagged, 25,881 gt Stolt Groenland is owned by Stolt Groenland BV care of Stolt Tankers BV of Rotterdam, Netherlands. It is entered with Assuranceforeningen Gard – gjensidig – on behalf of Stolt Groenland BV. It is entered for H&M with Gard AS.

Truth Aquatics, the owners of dive boat Conception, which caught fire and sank off the southern California coast on September 2nd, killing 34 people, have suspended operations indefinitely during the investigation into the disaster. “With the continued calls and request for tours, we want to announce that we are officially suspending all operations of our Truth Aquatic fleet for a to-be-determined amount of time,” the company said in a message posted on its website. “Right now we feel it’s important to dedicate our entire efforts to make our boats models of new regulations that we will continue to work on with the NTSB and Coast Guard,” Truth Aquatics said. The company owns and operates two other dive boats, one of which is similar in design to the Conception. No criminal charges have been filed in connection with the early morning blaze. The NTSB has said it will take more than a year to establish a cause of the explosion and fire, and determine wrongdoing, if any. A preliminary report noted that six crew members were asleep in berths behind the wheelhouse when the flames broke out, despite requirements to assign a night watchman. Coroner investigators determined that the victims died of smoke inhalation. Following the incident the USCG urged boat owners and captains to consider limiting use of lithium-ion batteries and chargers on board. The hulk of the Conception has been raised and taken to the mainland as part of the investigation.

An SAR operation for the crew still missing from the sunken fishing vessel Bourbon Rhode (IMO 9356359) was continuing. By October 2nd four crew members had been found dead in the sea. The weather in the area was deteriorating. Offshore tug ‘Alp Striker’ has joined the SAR work. The three survivors had witnessed seven other crew members going into a life raft, but there was still hope. Some reports have cited a possible azimuth thrusters failure as the cause of the sinking. The tug was equipped with two azimuth thrusters, used both for propulsion and steering. The tug had got into trouble when it was hit by Category Four Hurricane Lorenzo and sank about 1,200 miles off the island of Martinique on September 26th.2006-built, Luxembourg-flagged, 1,375 gt Bourbon Rhode is owned by Bourbon Supply Invetissements of Marseille, France. It is managed by Bourbon Offshore Greenmar SA of Nyon, Switzerland. It is entered with Shipowners’ Club on behalf of Bourbon Marine & Logistics.

The Norwegian Coastal Administration and commercial salvors have successfully managed a spill from fishing boat Bukhta Naezdnik (IMO 8913253). An unknown quantity of fuel escaped from the vessel’s tanks. Containment booms have been deployed around the vessel to limit the spread. Two spill control vessels were deployed to clean up the oil within the containment booms. A Norwegian Coast Guard surveillance aircraft conducted an overflight, but found only limited signs of marine pollution. The Norwegian Coastal Administration said on October 1st that it was standing down its role in the response effort, and that the shipowner would be working with the insurer, Skuld, to manage the remainder of the salvage response.1991-built, Russia-flagged, 1,899 gt Bukhta Nayezdink is owned and managed by Karat-1 ZAO of Murmansk, Russia. It is entered with Skuld (Business Unit Skuld Oslo 2) on behalf of JSC Norebo Holding.

Ultra-large container ship ONE Blue Jay (IMO 9741372) left Perama on September 27th upon completion of both her cargo operation and incident investigation formalities. Chemical/oil products tanker Günece (IMO 9140841) has also completed her cargo operations; initial damage surveys and temporary repairs were conducted at the pier. The tanker shifted to Piraeus anchorage where she remained stationary on October 1st. ONE Blue Jay was involved in an accident at Perama port in Piraeus, Greece during the late morning of Thursday September 26th, colliding with chemical/oil products tanker Gunece (IMO 9140841) while proceeding to the container terminal in Perama port near Piraeus, Greece.

2016-built, Japan-flagged, 145,251 gt ONE Blue Jay is owned by Aoi Ship Holding LLC care of NYK Line of Tokyo, Japan. ISM manager is NYK Shipmanagement Pte Ltd of Singapore.

1998-built, Turkey-flagged, 4,425 gt Gunece is owned and managed by Beykim Petrolculuk Gemi of Istanbul, Turkey. ISM manager is Beykar Denizcilik Gemi of Istanbul, Turkey. It is entered with Standard Club (London Class) on behalf of Beykim Petrolcülük Gemi lsletmeciligi San ve Tic AS.

The fire on board fishing vessel Piotr Zhitnikov (IMO 8610265) has been completely extinguished, and the vessel has been prepared for transition to undergo repairs. The vessel’s engines and navigation equipment have also been checked. She left the Kurile Islands for repairs in the port of Nakhodka during the afternoon of October 1st. Piotr Zhitnikov caught  fire in her fish equipment compartment on September 24th about 22 miles East of Iturup island, the Kuril Islands, Russia. There were 412 people on board, among them factory workers and the crew. The 56 crew members remained on board to continue firefighting. The fire was brought under control, but the ship was disabled. 1989-built, Russia-flagged, 32,096 gt is owned and managed by Dalmoreprodukt of Primorskiy kray, Russia.