Friday, February 5, 2021

Running on all cylinders

 The Port was bustling today. There were arrivals and departures of "repeat customers" at the container terminals, and Autoport and there were several ships in for repairs.

Autoport welcomed back Siem Confucius the pioneering LNG fueled auto carrier. This time I was able to catch the ship before it tied up.

I gave the ship's particulars when it called here the first time June 26, 2020

PSA Halifax greeted CMA CGM A.Lincoln another of the 14k TEU class ships that are the backbone of the Columbus service. The ship made an unusual Western Channel passage inbound and gave an interesting broadside view to boat watchers at Point Pleasant Park.

I also covered this ship's particulars when it called here April 14, 2020

Among the ships in port for repairs, Singelgracht was able to sail today. After arriving here January 23, 2021 in tow from a few miles offshore, it haD been tied up at Pier 9C.

As the ship sails outbound it passes Siem Commander (red hull in background) the tug that was mobilized to tow the snip into port in a matter of a few hours.

Not visible from forward, is the added exhaust gas scrubber, installed to allow the ship to continue to use heavy fuel and meet environmental regulations.

Perhaps it is a coincidence, but a sister ship, the Snoekgracht had an engine failure January 30 in the English Channel off Dover. It was able to anchor and self repair in a few hours.

Another ship that has been in port for some time is Imedghassen, an Algerian flag vessel that was to sail for Melfi Lines, but has remained tied up at Pier 34 since January 9, 2021.

I saw a crane landing some material on the ship several days ago, so some sort of repair was underway. The ship may now be waiting for its turn to come again in the rotation if its charter has not been voided.

At Pier 27 the unfortunate Giulia I remains tied up since its arrival January 31. The ship encountered severe weather January 30 and was struck by a  heavy wave resulting in the death of one crew member and injuries to three others.  

Bound from Norfolk, VA for Tunisia the ship was 320 nautical miles SE of Halifax when it was overcome by a near hurricane. In view of prevailing conditions it made for Halifax, the nearest safe port. The 25,303 gt, 39,2020 dwt bulker was built in 2014 by the Yangfan Group in Zhoushan, and carries four cranes and grabs.

Due to its position at Pier 27 it is difficult to see if there is damage to the ship or cargo, but in view of the circumstances, the crew must be traumatized at the very least. Depending on the severity of the injuries to the three seafarers, the ship may also be below safe manning levels. Acquiring replacements for some or all of the crew will certainly be difficult under current travel restrictions. It has been reported that the crew may have been aboard the ship for more than a year.

With the recent loss of six Yarmouth area fishermen, Nova Scotians do not need to be reminded of the dangers of seafaring. Nevertheless it is still a chilling fact that seafarers risk their lives every day to carry cargo for those of us who enjoy comparative safety on shore.


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