Thursday, April 28, 2016

VDR FOUND UPDATE

Further to the previous Post a reason for the possible deliberate release of the SS EL FARO VDR is that VDR's come in both floatable and non-floatable designs.  The floatable design can be combined with an EPIRB which would aid to it being found in the event of a ship sinking - which the SS EL FARO did in the hurricane.

Therefore we would suggest that the "Senior Officer" thinking that the VDR was possibly of the floating type deliberately released it so it would float clear and be found after the vessel sank. The action therefore was done with the best of intentions and not part of a coverup

Good Watch

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

VDR FROM SS EL FARO FOUND APRIL 26, 2016

 

After an absence of 18 months an event has occurred which has led to the decision to publish a Post. Normally one would have made a comment to a popular maritime blog however due to an exchange of comments at the end of 2015 we no longer comment to other Blogs.

As a Maritime Consultant data crosses my desk which leads to consideration of maritime incidents as an independent investigator.  Such was the case with the find yesterday Tuesday April 26, 2016 of the VDR of the SS EL FARO.  The search had been abandoned by the NTSB no doubt much to the relief of the USCG, TOTE the vessels owners and U.S. maritime Unions involved.  Their overall incompetence and the behaviour of the vessel's all American crew and Master in severe weather with in addition the several Polish workers on board for whose lives they were responsible is to say the least questionable.  At the insistence of U.S. Senator Nelson (D) of Florida the search was resumed by the NTSB. 

The persons who contacted me have suggested that the VDR was deliberately detached from the vessel and dumped prior to the sinking with a view to hiding the recorded evidence of the voyage. The last service record on this VDR does not clearly record if its battery was replaced.  According to the manufacturer this could mean there is in fact no record available on the VDR because the battery had expired.  This of course will not be known until the VDR is recovered and examined.  Thus a possible planned cover-up could still be successful.

Well at first glance this seemed a conspiracy theory and wild speculation.  However on examining the photos of the placement of the VDR where and how it was attached to the vessel and how it could be released from its stowed position the picture changed.  In a photo originally published after the event the VDR is seen attached not to the signal mast as described in articles about the event but to a deck girder.  There are two stainless steel bands with finger hooks which if pulled appear to release the VDR and it is disconnected from the girder. The underwater video appears to show the VDR unattached to any of the ships other structure.

Now the speculation is not so wild as it first appeared - who would want to do such a thing?  It was further suggested that a "Senior Officer" of the vessel performed this operation for reasons known only to that person.  Sadly all 33 persons on board were lost at sea when the SS EL FARO sank and so this theory is pure speculation but clearly a definite possibility.

In view of the seriousness of this possibility comments will be entertained and if professional answered.


Good Watch.


Sunday, August 31, 2014

NO LONGER PUBLISHED

This blog NAUTICAL LOG is no longer published. Therefore comments are not acknowledged and are automatically erased.

In April 2016 we decided to republish NAUTICAL LOG and Post on and for special occasions due to issues not or not well covered, in our opinion, in other maritime blogs.  Since the end of 2015 we no longer comment to other blogs. 

Also we will again respond as appropriate to your comments.  Thank you and

Good Watch.

Monday, August 11, 2014

NLIN #8 - 2014

The following M-Notices have been published and are available at www.gov.uk/government publications.  Call 023 8032 9391 if you have any difficulties.

MIN 487 (M+F) Navigation: Safety of Navigation - Counterfeit Nautical Charts and Publications.

MIN 488 (M) Navigation: Safety of Navigation _ Amendments to SOLAS Chapter V and updates to various performance standards.

MIN 489 (M) Navigation: Vessel Traffic Services V103 and Local Port Services Course Dates 2014-2015.

MGN 477 (M) Maritime Labour Convention, 2006: Seafarers Employment Agreements.

MGN 481 (M) Maritime Labour Convention, 2006: Merchant Shipping (Maritime Labour Convention)( Crew Accommodation)

MGN 517 (M) Maritime Labour Convention, 2006: Substantially equivalent accommodation standards for Large Commercial Yachts of 3000GT to less than 5000GT.

This will be the final publication of M-Notices from NAUTICAL LOG as we cease publication.

A final "Good Watch".

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

YET ANOTHER BOATING ACCIDENT

In the Florida Keys the search continues for a missing boater whose empty sailboat was found drifting near Dixie Shoal.  The person is the holder of a USCG 50 ton license, a pilots license, is an enthusiastic free diver and is a dive master.  It is reported that he was free diving on his own - amazing a person of his apparent experience would do this - so it is possible that this resulted in his going missing.

If unfortunately he is found deceased his will be the 8 death in this area this year.

Good Watch.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

BOATING ACCIDENT DEATHS

So far nothing - there has been no action taken by either the USCG, FWC, or the County Commission of Miami-Dade County, Florida regarding the boating accidents this year. 

Here is a summary:

August 03, 2014 - jet ski crash, result 1 death.

July 04, 2014 - three boat crash, result 4 deaths and injured persons.

May 05, 2014 - assisting grounded boat with its engines running running, result 1 death.

May 26, 2014 - boat crashed into anchored boat, result 1 death.

Total:  7 deaths.

According to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission (FWC) in 2013 there were 104 boating accidents resulting in 4 deaths and 50 injuries. 

According to the FWC spokesman Jorge Pino boating accidents occur due to personal responsibility, whether it involves alcohol or drug consumption, speed or just carelessness.  This is indeed very true and yet so far nothing has been done by any Authority involved in safe boating.

Good Watch.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

END OF PASSAGE

After several years of publication, including a previous hiatus, NAUTICAL LOG has decided that the Blog has run its course.  For now we shall continue to re-blog some maritime items such as the M-Notices from the UK MCA now published under "government publications" prior to ceasing publication.  We shall also not be commenting on the Posts of other maritime blogs but may comment if there are other boating accidents in Miami-Dade County, Florida. 

This decision was reached due to an apparent lack of interest now in NAUTICAL LOG indicated by the lack of response to our concerns with safe boating particularly in the South Florida region. No responses to our e-mails from those captains supposedly interested in making a difference by changes in local boat operation regulations.  Recently no comments have been received on the Posts subject matter making our efforts rather pointless.

Good Watch.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

NLIN #7 - 2014

The following M Notices are now available at www.gov.uk/government/publications (note this new e-mail address).  If you have problems call 023 8032 9391

MIN  479 (M) Maritime Labour Convention, 2006: Food and Catering; Recognised Courses for Ship's Cooks foe Food Hygiene or Food Safety in Catering.

MGN 478 (M) Maritime Labour Convention, 2006: Wages.

MGN 479 (M) Maritime Labour Convention, 2006: Repatriation.

MGN 480 (M) Maritime Labour Convention, 2006: Shipowners Liabilities including Seafarer Compensation.

MGN 485 (M) Maritime Labour Convention, 2006: Seafarer Employment Agreements - Application to Trainees.

MSN 1838 (M) Maritime Labour Convention, 2006: Minimum Age.

MSN 1839 (M) Maritime Labour Convention, 2006 Medical Certification

MSN 1841 (M) Maritime Labour Convention, 2006: Medical Care Ship's Doctors.

MSN 1844 (M) Maritime Labour Convention, 2006: Crew Accommodation.

MSN 1845 (M) Maritime Labour Convention, 2006: Food and Catering: Provision of Food and Fresh Water.

MSN 1846 (M) Maritime Labour Convention, 2006: Food and Catering: Ship's Cooks and Catering Staff.

Good Watch.




Sunday, July 13, 2014

WASTING MY TIME ?

 

Over the years NAUTICAL LOG has published many Posts about boating safety and the importance of the Nautical Rules of the Road with just an occasional comment.  Recently there was a series of ten (10) Posts on the Steering and Sailing Rules section which inspired not a single comment - disappointing and somewhat disheartening to say the least.  Naturally NAUTICAL LOG wondered if this was a waste of time as there was no apparent interest in boating safety either from most boaters, at least those in this area, or from the "Concerned Authorities" of our incompetent U.S. Administration which has left our Nation virtually leaderless and rapidly declining on all fronts at the Federal, State and Local levels.  So once again NAUTICAL LOG is ready to cease publication.

Recently in Biscayne Bay, FL we have had two catastrophic boating accidents resulting in deaths and these seem to have finally triggered a reaction from those who really count in all of this - the professional boating Captains. 

The local Media has been covering these boating accidents with various levels of reporter boating knowledge from total ignorance to some basic boating knowledge and the various points-of-view expressed.  Under the headline "An urgent push for safety" the "Miami Herald" Sunday July 13, 2014 edition covered the latest action.  It is much needed as one of the persons (name withheld by NAUTICAL LOG but published by the Miami Herald ) interviewed stated:

"It's not the drinking. Everybody drink's" he said. " It's just that everybody is so irresponsible. I have one beer, sometimes two, and I stop.  I'm responsible for my boat and the people". 

Well this is just the attitude that gets people into trouble - no not everybody drinks when boating.  In the State of Florida the boating adult BAC (blood alcohol level) for intoxication is 0.08 and your two beers could well do that nicely due to the motion action of the boat and the high temperatures.  For the boating minor the BAC is 0.02.  These are the BAC levels for being charged with BUI (boating under the influence) in the State of Florida. So perhaps you are not being as responsible as you think you are and therein lies a major part of the safe boating problem.

The two captains mentioned above are Bric Peeples and Terry Claus who have taken to Facebook ® to publish what they feel should be done.  They have enlisted the help of local maritime attorney Bruce Mars, Washington, DC boating and fishing lobbyist Jim Donofrio and in addition they are contacting the FWC and members of the Miami-Dade County Commission. 

They propose
  • a night-time speed limit and idle zones
  • mandatory licensing
  • on-water education for recreational boaters
  • harsh penalties for boating under the influence
  • a change in lighting requirements for recreational boaters
  • daytime idle speed around popular sandbars off Key Biscayne
NAUTICAL LOG fully supports these points and offers his assistance.  We do not have Facebook® or Twitter ® so you may make contact through this Blog.  Cory Offutt of Tow-BoatUS Miami proposes a campaign to "shock and educate boaters into safe boating" .  Again NAUTICAL LOG fully supports this approach and once again offers assistance. 

Good Watch.


Thursday, July 10, 2014

NLIN #6 - 2014

The following M-Notices are available at www.gov.uk/mca if you have problems call 023 8032 9391


MIN 486 (M)  Support for Maritime Training (SMarT) - Additional Funds of up to £3 million

MGN 511 (M) Solid Bulk Cargoes - Adoption of Amendment 02-13 to the International Maritime Solid Bulk Cargoes (IMSBC0 Code - MSC 1/Circ.1452

MGN 512 (M) Solid Bulk Caroes - Guidelines for the submission of Information and Completion of the Format for the Properties of Cargoes not listed in the International Maritime Solid Bulk Cargoes (IMSBC) Code and their Conditions of Carriage - MSC. 1/Circ.1453

MGN 513 (M) Solid Bulk Cargoes - Guidelines for Developing and Approving Procedures for Sampling, Testing and Controlling the Moisture Content for Solid Bulk Cargoes which may Liquefy ' MSC. 1/Circ. 1454

MGN 514 (M) Solid Bulk Cargoes - Early Implementation of the Draft Agreement 03-15 to the International Maritime Solid Bulk Cargoes (IMSBC) Code related to the Carriage and Testing of Iron Ore Fines - DSC. 1/Circ.71

Good Watch.