Thursday, September 16, 2021

Oceanex Sanderling - Update

 My previous report on September 12 ( see: update ) stated that Oceanex Sanderling remained in port due to bad weather (Hurricane Larry). Based on more recent information, that statement appears to have incorrect. I have heard that the ship had a stack fire soon after leaving Halifax on September 10 and returned to port for repairs and clean up.

The ship remains tied up at Pier 9C. The Oceanex schedule shows the ship sailing from Halifax today, September 16, for a September 18 arrival in St.John's, but there has been no posting on the pilotage list so far today.  The ship is now due to sail at 2000hrs .

Stack fires usually leave soot deposits on the funnel, and I can see some light black staining on the port funnel. The ship's auxiliaries seem to be running, with exhaust coming from the starboard funnel, and deck lights functioning.


Wednesday, September 15, 2021

Tanker Evros for Irving Oil

 The tanker Evros arrived in Halifax from Amsterdam on September 15 with the latest cargo of refined product for Irving Oil.

The ship was built in 2005 by STX, Jinhae, South Korea with tonnages of 30,020 gt, 47,120 dwt. Flying the Bahamas flag, owners are listed  as Empire Navigation Ltd, and managers as Sun Enterprises Ltd. The latter is one of the operating arms of the Stavros G. Livanos companies, and the funnel carries the traditional "Lambda" (Greek letter "L") for Livanos. This ship's sister Strymon also called at Irving Oil in June 6, 2019.

The red "Λ" and blue border marks Livanos ships. The name Evros is from a river that flows through Bulgaria and forms the land border between Greece and Turkey. It has also been the scene of mass refugee migrations pushed by the Turkish government and is now heavily fortified. Nearby Alexandroupoli is also an important naval port for NATO.


Tuesday, September 14, 2021

Two departures and updates

 Two ships sailed this afternoon, September 14,  in near perfect lighting conditions, allowing for better photos than when they arrived.

Trinitas completed unloading its cargo of nickel sulfides from Cuba on Nirint Shipping's regular route and departed for Bilbao, Spain.

The ship arrived yesterday, September 13, and due to the sun's position, the ship was in shadow.
See yesterday's post.

The other departure was the bulk carrier Manzanillo. As previously reported it arrived September 8 from Sorel, QC.

Now with a cargo of wood pellets it is headed for the River Tyne, England. This time I was able to get a photo without tugs alongside.


White and Bright at Foundation

 Perhaps not what you were expecting from the title (no it is not a refrigerator) the Super Yacht My Lady arrived in Halifax September 12 from the Newport, RI area and tied up at the Foundation Dock*.

Built in 1994 by Hakvoort in Monnickdam, Netherlands the 658 gt vessel can accommodate ten guests in six staterooms and a crew of fourteen. It was first named Lady Marina but was renamed Lady M. in 1998, Lady M II in 2010 and My Lady in 2019. It measures 49.99m length and 9.3m breadth and has a 6,000 mile range.

As with most yachts of this class it has many other features some of which are summarized at:

Yacht Charter Fleet

* The Foundation Dock is the name applied to a newly built pier. It is in the same location as the pier used by the legendary tug and salvage company Foundation Maritime and its successors MIL Tug, Eastern Canada Towing Ltd (ECTUG) and Svitzer Canada. The pier is lined with floating stages (seasonally) and is part of a redeveloped board walk and wharf area completed earlier this summer. It has now been re-purposed to cater to pleasure craft and tour boats exclusively.

The area is quite unrecognizable from its Foundation Maritime days as this late 1950s or early 1960 photo shows:

White arrows point to the old Foundation pier. The eight storey white building in the centre mid ground is the Ralston building, also demolished in the past year. The large graveled area in the photo below is its former site.

My Lady, partly concealed by a tree, at the Foundation wharf, 2021 version.

The black arrows point to the same location as the white arrows in the upper photo.

The intersection of Lower Water Street and Salter Street at far right in the colour photo is under the watermark in the black and white photo.


Monday, September 13, 2021

New Name Times Two

 Two ships arrived in Halifax September 13 wearing new names. Both ships have been calling in Halifax for some time under their previous names, so they are familiar to the port.

First to arrive was the Netherlands flag Trinitas arriving from Cuba for Nirint Shipping BV. The ship was a regular in Halifax under the name Hollandia with cargoes of nickel sulfide from Moa, Cuba as back haul cargo on Nirint's Netherlands and Spain to Cuba container and generals service.

Built as Trinitas in 2007, with the hull by Damen Okean, Mykolayiv and completed by Damen Hoogezand, Foxhol, the ship was delivered as Nirint Hollandia. It was renamed Hollandia in 2012, but remained on Nirint service. It started to call in Halifax in 2014.

It is a 8,999 gt, 12,016 dwt vessel with a container capacity of 684 TEU, including 80 reefer plugs on deck. It uses a pair of 80 tonne SWL cranes to handle cargo, which in the case of the nickel concentrates is in bulk bags. It has movable tween decks and ventilated box shaped holds, so is an adaptable multi-purpose vessel capable of carrying bulk cargoes.

The ship was renamed Trinitas again in 2019, but had not called in Halifax under that name until now. Normally a name change while under charter indicates a change of owners, but this ship is still owned by a single ship company called JW Danser + PJ Danser of Delfzijl, Netherlands and managed by Wagenborg. The ship is not shown on future Nirint schedules so may be reassigned soon.

The second renamed ship is now called Vivienne Sheri D. While still carrying the Antigua and Barbuda flag, it has reportedly been sold to the Doornekamp Shipping of Odessa, ON. They have just started a container service from Europe to the Great Lakes and will include a feeder service out of Halifax. Their first ship Peyton Lynn C is currently on the Great Lakes after inaugurating a service with Spliethoff's Cleveland-Europe Express. The ship will also call at Doornekamp's home port of Picton, ON. Its calls here in Halifax will more likely be in the winter when the Seaway is closed to traffic.

Vivienne Sheri D has been so recently renamed that it has no name on the bows yet (too difficult to reach I guess) but only on the stern. A 10,905 gt vessel built in 2009 by Naval Gijon, Spain, it measures 12,640 dwt with a container capacity of 925 TEU including 200 reefers. Classed as a container feeder it has no cargo cranes.

Better known as Pictor J until 2020 and Pictor since earlier this year, it has been working on Eimskip's Green Line from Reykjavik, Argentia, Halifax, Portland, Maine and return since 2019. Eimskip also operates the ship as a New England feeder for such lines as CMA CGM. That may be supplemented by Doornekamp's feeder service.

According to media reports Doornekamp will keep the ship on the Eimskip charter for up to two years, but plan to place it on the Cleveland-Europe Express eventually.


Sunday, September 12, 2021

MSC Maria Clara

Over the past few years the Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC) has been on a major ship buying spree. The company already had the second largest container ship fleet in the world, but with an estimated capacity of more than 4 million TEU it is within 106,000 TEU of overtaking Maersk - long the largest operator.

Although MSC has more than 40 new ships on order, totaling 720,000 TEU, it is not content to wait until 2022 to take delivery from the shipyards. Instead it is "hoovering" up ships at an incredible rate - buying ships sight unseen, ships that are already on charter to other lines, and older ships at well above market price estimates. Even ships from the Chinese domestic trade, which normally are never sold on have gone for record prices.

Shipping companies are making massive profits these days, so MSC apparently feels it can afford this daring program. It has already doubled its fleet size in the last eight years, but buying some seventy ships of more than 300,000 TEU in the last year alone is quite startling. MSC has also been noted over the years for operating older ships than average, so buying up "used" ships seemingly does not worry them.

Today, September 12, marked the arrival in Halifax of one of these "used" ships, which joined the MSC fleet this summer. Built in 2004 by Hanjin Heavy Industry and Construction Co, Ulsan it is typical of the older tonnage, which was once thought to be unprofitable to operated. The 54,214 gt, 68,150 dwt ship, with a capacity of 5060 TEU, including 454 reefers, started life on charter to Maersk as Maersk Douala. It called in Halifax under that name in the same year. In 2009 it became Charlotte C. Rickmers in 2014 and was renamed Charlotte briefly the same year before becoming Augusta Kontor. It called in Halifax regularly under than name in 2014 and 2015 under charter to HAPAG-Lloyd.

Augusta Kontor outbound from Halifax May 14, 2015 on charter to HAPAG-Lloyd.

In 2017 the ship was renamed again as August then Long Chang then Zhong Gu Zhe Jiang. It would nornmally have remained in Chinese domestic trade until the end of its useful life, but instead it was swept up in the buying spree.

MSC renamed the ship Maersk Maria Clara effective June 1, 2021 and the ship has now taken up a slot in one of MSC's North American routes. After clearing the Canadian Food Inspection Agency's examination for Limantra Dispar the ship left for Montreal. One interesting note - the ship sailed from Liverpool September 25 and arrived in Canada via the Strait of Belle Isle, but had to to divert all the way down the west coast of Newfoundland and the Cabot Strait to Halifax for CFIA clearance. It may have chosen the northern great circle route to stay north of Hurricane Larry, but it was still a long detour.

MSC Maria Clara, loaded to St.Lawrence River draft, arriving in Halifax September 12 under a third name.

Delays, Stays and Make Ways

 The passing of Hurricane Larry, well offshore from Nova Scotia, but making a direct hit on the Avalon Peninsula of Newfoundland September 11 caused wild weather and sea conditions over a large area. Several ships steered wide of the storm, delaying their arrival or remained in port or returned to port. 

Among the delayed arrivals was EM Kea on its regular run from Montreal to northern Europe on the Maersk./CMA CGM service. It would normally arrive in Halifax on a Saturday, but instead steamed slowly across the Gulf of St.Lawrence, missing some of the worst conditions, and arrived today (Sunday instead.) This did not pose a problem for PSA Halifax, with only one other ship to handle.

EM Kea at PSA Halifax pier 42 had two cranes while MSC Veronique at Pier 41 got three.

Opting to stay in port, Oceanex Sanderling did not make its usual Friday (September 10) departure for St.John's (scheduled arrival September 12) but instead remained in Halifax. After a time at anchor it moved to Pier 9B, perhaps to give the crew some shore leave. Update: Later reported the ship had a stack fire shortly after sailing October 10 and returned to port.

Conditions remain somewhat chaotic in Newfoundland with damage ashore and power outages, so no new departure date has been set for the ship, but also a  hint that the ship may be here for more than a day or two.

Returning to port, smaller naval vessels that were participating in Operation Cutlass Shield 2021, avoided the severe conditions, and instead exercised in Bedford Basin yesterday. This morning they sailed again, accompanied by the fishing trawler Patrick and William*, which appears to have been hired to work with the operation. HMCS Summerside and HMCS Moncton sailed while HMCS Kingston remained in Bedford Basin.

Lead by HMCS Montreal, the small flotilla sails out the main channel while the container ship MSC Maria Clara takes the western channel and hoots for some pleasure craft to clear the way.

MSC Maria Clara arrived to anchor in the lower harbour for Canadain Food Inspection Agency clearance. The ship, which has only recently been acquired as part of MSC's ship buying binge, was no doubt in Asian ports recently and needs to be inspected for Limantria Dispar larvae. No stranger to Halifax in its varied career, the ship deserves a post all of its own, which I will file later.
* Footnote
Patrick and William showed up in port September 3.
Built by Glovertown Marine Ltd in 2001 as Katrina Charlene it was renamed in 2019 by RS Marine Ltd of St.John's.