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The Greenpeace crew of the MS Arctic Sunrise have become known in the Media as the "Arctic 30".  This week the Russian Authorities have changed the charges of Piracy against these persons to Hooliganism.  This has been described in some maritime blogs as a reduction of charges actually it is anything but and the "Arctic 30" are in greater difficulties.

Under Russian Law Hooliganism is defined as: 

"is a gross violation of public order, expressing clear disrespect for society, committed with the use of objects used as weapons, organized group that is associated with resistance to authority".

The sentences handed down as punishment for being convicted of Hooliganism under Russian Law by the Russian Courts can be severe.  By taking this action the Russian Authorities bring all charges under Russian Law only.  Therefore they do not have to prove an Act of Piracy under International Maritime Law as stated in UNCLOS.  NAUTICAL LOG suggests this is most likely a reaction to the recent statements by the Media, Maritime Unions and Governments. 

This change of the charges now places those charged in an extremely difficult position facing long sentences entirely under Russian Law and Courts.  The recent public abuse of Russian leadership by German leadership was unwise, uncalled for and no Russian is going to ignore such insults.  One has to wonder where modern politicians both at home and abroad attended - if they ever did -  diplomacy classes. 

The leadership of the European Union by its frau führer with her lectures to leaders of other countries only adds to the complexity of international political relationships.

Good Watch.


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Several times during the year NAUTICAL LOG has had visitors searching for lifejacket instructions. With two just over Christmas we decided to publish something for everybody to see and read.
Choose a Coast Guard approved life-jacket and make sure it is undamaged. Make sure life-jackets are readily accessible, never locked away. Check the fit, there are adult, child and infant sizes, the correct one MUST be used. Choose bright colour life-jackets so as to be seen easily by Search and Rescue (SAR).Put your life-jacket ON BEFORE you leave the berth. Make sure you have a light and whistle attached AND they BOTH WORK.
Good Watch


It sometimes happens that one is going to write a Post on a subject when lo and behold there is already an excellent one.  Such is the case today; so rather than repeat everything let me refer you to the source of that Post

At present we are experiencing Perigean Spring Tides which occur when the Moon is at perigee on its oval path that is the closest point to Earth.  One of the principal results are higher than usual Spring Tides as against the Neap Tides.

Should you be interested in the full explanation of this phenomenon then you might like to reference "Old Salt Blog" which has an excellent explanation of this event and uses all the correct terms - quite unlike our Media here in South Florida.

Good Watch.


This month saw the commissioning into the Irish Naval Service of a new Class of Irish Naval vessel more of the Frigate size than the previously Corvette size.  However they are all classed as Patrol vessels, the new vessel is LÉ Samuel Beckett P61.NAUTICAL LOG wishes her well and a successful service.

The older vessels saw unbelievable service and value for money the first being commissioned in 1979 and continued through the '80's and 90's into the 21st. Century.  During those years in addition to patrolling the stormy seas around the rugged Irish coast they made passages across the Western Ocean to the United States and Canada, south to South America as far as Argentina, and east to Asia as far as Korea.  Such passages are really remarkable for such small vessels and show the competence of Irish seafarers who as Naval Officers and Merchant Marine Officers train together.

Good Watch.