Tuesday, July 2, 2013

FROM SUPERFAST TO STOP

 
 
ADDITIONAL NOTES: 
 
No doubt as a result of our Posts on the Genting MS Bimini Superfast NAUTICAL LOG received a request for information this afternoon regarding Bimini, Bahamas and where the MS Bimini Superfast will be berthing.
 
As far as NAUTICAL LOG can ascertain there is no alongside berthing for a vessel the size of the MS Bimini Superfast at Bimini.  It appears the vessel will anchor close to the Island and tenders (small vessels) will transfer the passengers ashore to the marina.  Now when this vessel operated in the Mediterranean a procedure known as a 'Mediterranean Moor' was used.  The vessel backed into the quay and used an anchor and stern lines to secure the vessel in position.  It is actually a pretty neat piece of ship-handling seamanship and examples can be seen on YouTube ® one of which is the MS Superfast VI  the previous name of the MS Bimini Superfast.  Both vehicles and passengers use ramps lowered at the stern onto the quay to disembark and board the vessel.  It is possible that this system could be used in the future as the MS Bimini Superfast has ramps but the answer to the question must come from GENTING BIMINI not NAUTICAL LOG.  

Again this is something else that has not been addressed by this Company which tends to reflect poorly on them in the field of PR.
 
Good Watch.


To quote this mornings The Miami Herald:

"The SuperFast (MS Bimini Superfast) cruise ship won't be whisking anyone away to the Resorts World Bimini casino until it can fulfill U.S. Coast Guard safety requirements."

The 32,000 ton vessel could not meet the requirement to evacuate the vessel within 30 minutes. In addition the lifeboat lowering system malfunctioned and there was an "overall lack of proficiency by the crew to respond to an emergency situation".  This according to the USCG Chief of Inspection for the USCG 7th. District-MSO.

Once again we see a vessel arriving from Europe with a crew supposedly trained to IMO-STCW standards unable to do so when they come to the United States.  It does not say much for the European enforcement of these STCW standards while the vessel operates in European Waters.  There are dozens of cruise ships, ferries and high speed vessels operating all over those European Waters.

The whole idea of IMO-STCW was that crews were trained to an International Standard in their Flag State thus vessels and crews should be able to transfer between countries and qualify in the Port State visited.  Unfortunately this has not been so and NAUTICAL LOG has had the experience of being called in to train up crews which had failed USCG 7th. District-MSO safety inspections. Well not so this time, so we shall see how long this takes.  It is of course disastrous PR for Genting.

According to the Chief of Inspection Commander Janet Espino-Young USCG on Saturday the crew did successfully lower the lifeboats and performed an evacuation during a simulated drill.  Normally the Safety Inspection takes up to seven days to complete however it seems that Genting had some very false ideas of what a drill was and in particular what a USCG-MSO Drill was and were quite unprepared.  A bad combination of lack of local knowledge and crew training.

One of the key points the MSO Safety Officers look for is crew motivation, knowledge and ability so that if equipment does go wrong (it always does at the worst possible time) the crew can direct passengers to alternate systems to continue the evacuation.  Evacuation of the passengers within 30 minutes is absolutely necessary it is the required end result.  It helps greatly if overseas companies have the voluminous paperwork examined by USCG well prior to bringing the vessel to a U.S. Port then it is largely a matter of a series of drills and the U.S. Passenger Safety Certificate  being issued.

So thank goodness for the professionalism of our USCG-MSO requiring full IMO-STCW Standards, not the clearly sloppy inspections of the EMSA and elsewhere.

Good Watch.

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