Tuesday, August 31, 2021

Siem Pilot sails

 The offshore support vessel Siem Pilot sailed this evening for the Cabot Strait. As reported previously in my companion blog Tugfax August 16 there is no traditional work for suppliers off Nova Scotia since there is no oil or gas activity.  

Siem Pilot conducted trials in Bedford Basin after the ROV equipment was installed.

However several of the vessels are equipped to support ROVs and submersibles and there is work for them involving submarine cables. Siem Pilot has been fitted out with a small gantry on the port side to deploy a ROV. The gantry is painted in the distinctive colours of Dominion Diving.

It is reported to me that Siem Pilot will be surveying the submarine power cable that runs from the island of Newfoundland to Nova Scotia. The cable was installed to deliver power from the Muskrat Falls hydro electric development on the lower Churchill River in Labrador.

Monday, August 30, 2021

Busy Monday

 It was a busy Monday in the port with almost all facilities seeing ships alongside. Although rainy, misty and at times foggy in the morning, the weather did clear later in the day allowing for some photos.

PSA Halifax had three ships, MSC Sandra B (east bound for top up), Zim Yokohama (see yesterday's post) and Lagarfoss. The latter ship is on the Icelandic shipping company Eimskip's Green Line service en route to Portland, ME.

Eimskip also offers a New England feeder service to other shipping lines, but today the ship looked fully loaded (at least on deck) with Eimskip boxes. 

Built in 2014 by Rongcheng Shenfei Shipbuilding Co in Rongcheng, China, Lagarfoss is a 10,119 gt, 11,811 dwt ship with a capacity of 880 TEU. It also carries a pair of 45 tonne capacity cranes.

The autocarrier Torrens arrived early in the morning at Autoport to discharge cars, then moved to Pier 27 on the Halifax side of the harbour to unload machinery. Its usual Ocean Terminals berth at Pier 31 was occupied by Augusta Luna (see yesterday's post).

Because the ship's 237 tonne capacity stern ramp is angled to starboard, the ship must berth bow in when at Pier 27. At Pier 30-31, it berths stern in, which is a more convenient arrangement for cargo work.

Both oil docks had "customers" today. Irving Oil's Woodside terminal saw the company tanker East Coast on its customary "milk run" to several regional terminals. Its last port was Charlottetown. Later in the day the tanker Mitera arrived from Amsterdam and anchored awaiting the berth to clear. It may also have required CFIA inspection for  L. dispar clearance.[ see August 18 explanation for the new terminology].

Unlike most product tankers, this one was not built in Korea. It comes from the Onomichi Zosen in Japan, where it was built for MOL as Pioneer Express. The 26,938 gt, 47,370 dwt ship was acquired and renamed by present owners Olympos Shiptrade Co Ltd in 2019. 

Meanwhile Imperial Oil had its own version of product tanker - also non-Korean. The Swedish flag Wisby Pacific dates from 2017 and the Guangzhou International shipyard in China. A 29,681 gt, 49,686 dwt vessel it has a distinctive wide wheelhouse as compared to the previous vessel.

The ship arrived from Beaumont, TX and tied up at number 3 dock. The rail siding behind the dock is lined with autoracks ready awaiting loads from Autoport.

Sunday, August 29, 2021


 Two of the facilities in Halifax harbour were busy today. Gold Bond Gypsum (formerly National Gypsum) had one ship alongside and one waiting and PSA Halifax (operators of the southend container terminal) had two ships alongside and a third waiting.

Gold Bond had been accumulating a large stockpile of material for the last several weeks:

The raw gypsum ore is transported from the open pit mine at Milford by CN rail in dedicated unit trains. Cars dump their loads in the white building at left, where the material is conveyed under ground to the large stacker/crane. It is conveyed again (white structures to left of centre) to the mobile ship loader on the pier (dark structure in centre, in front of the stacker crane).

Arriving this morning, August 29, Algoma Integrity began to load immediately, and by late afternoon had reduced the stockpile noticeably. It has raised its self-unloader boom to allow the mobile ship loader to access all the ship's hatches. The loader is at about midships position in this photo, and appears to be loading the ship from aft to forward - perhaps in one pass.

Also arriving today, Thunder Bay anchored nearby and will move in as soon as the Integrity is finished.

At PSA Halifax (formerly Halterm) there were two ships alongside. CMA CGM Andromeda is new to Halifax. A 131,332 gt, 131,236 dwt ship, it was built by Hyundai Ulsan in 2009 and has a container capacity of 11,200 TEU. It is sailing on the Columbus JAX service.

Also alongside was Maersk Penang on the east bound leg of its transatlantic regular run. Returning from Montreal its next scheduled port is Bremerhaven.

Once both ships are clear, it will be time for the long awaited Zim Yokohama to berth, now scheduled for tomorrow morning.

The ship has been in quarantine anchorage off Halifax since August 6 due to COVID cases among the crew. 

The only other commercial activity in the harbour today was at Pier 30-31 where another regular caller, Augusta Luna, was tied up.

The ship arrived yesterday with another load of nickel sulfides from Cuba. The ship sails for the Dutch company Nirint Shipping BV. Cuba's economy is in paralysis, since the shut down of tourism due to COVID. One of the country's few sources of foreign revenue is the sale of nickel - although it is believed rum is still doing well. (See the container tanks on deck forward.)


Saturday, August 28, 2021

Horizon Arctic arrives

 The offshore support vessel Horizon Arctic arrived in Halifax today, August 28, from its expedition to explore the wreck of the Titanic. Chartered by OceanGate Expedition Inc the ship was base for the five person submersible Titan. The sub went 2500 ft down in what is to be the first of an annual series of visits to monitor the condition of the wreck, the debris filed and surrounding eco-system. 

As Horizon Arctic arrives today it passes USCG Escanaba tied up at HMC Dockyard after returning from Greenland.

Built as Bourbon Arctic in 2016 by Vard , hull in Tulcea, Romania, and completed in Brattvaag, Norway, the 8143 gt ship was acquired by Horizon Maritime in 2019. At 8143 gt, 4129 dwt, it is a very sizeable vessel. In fact, in addition to its ROV capabilities, and 307 tonnes bollard pull, it has accommodation for up to 60 persons for offshore crew transfers and construction work. As a modern offshore vessel it has diesel/electric propulsion and advanced hull design.

With no activity in exploration or development of resources off Nova Scotia Horizon Maritime is finding other innovative uses for its fleet. They recently won a $370,875.00 contract with the Royal Canadian Navy to participate in Operation Cutlass Fury 2021.  That is a nine day exercise with NATO Allies the US, UK and France, 50 to 100 miles southeast of Halifax, during which the ship will be the subject of surveillance, boarding and searching. The ship will also be carrying five RCN personnel in addition to the usual crew.

The exercise will commence September 6 with a low altitude flyover of Halifax harbour by CH-148 cyclones, CP-140 Auroras and Alpha* jets. The flyover, at 500 feet, will occur at 1300 hrs ADT. We can expect to see some of the cooperating vessels in Halifax before and possibly after the exercise ends on September 17.

*The Alpha jets are privately owned by Top Aces (a Montreal based "adversary air provider") and are former Belgian military aircraft retired in 2018, and provide combat training.

Thursday, August 26, 2021

Acadia to sea

 The legendary Canadian Survey Ship Acadia put to sea today in tow for Shelburne, NS. This is the first time the ship has left the confines of Halifax Harbour since it became the centrepiece of the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic in 1982.

The tug Atlantic Larch backs Acadia out of her berth at the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic, as fog rolls in from the sea. That is Canada's naval memorial, the corvette Sackville in the background. Where else can you take a picture of two World War II veterans?

There are no available drydocking facilities available in Halifax to carry out the needed "shave and haircut" to the ship's hull and quite probably some repairs before a new anti-fouling coating can be applied to the underwater parts of the hull.

Built in 1913 by Swan Hunter, Newcastle on Tyne, the ship was a hydrographic and oceanographic survey vessel before it was retired in 1969. It was commissioned into the Royal Canadian Navy in World Wars I and II and conducted important survey work in Hudson Bay and elsewhere in Atlantic Canada. A more detailed history can be found in the Wikipedia entry: CSS Acadia


Wednesday, August 25, 2021

Another ONE

THE Alliance brought in another "new to Halifax" ship on its EC5 service today. ONE Honolulu is one of three H class sister ships owned by K-Line. All have been renamed and repainted in Ocean Network Express (ONE) colours as K-line joined partners MOL and NYK to form ONE.

Built in 2012 by IHI, Kure as Honolulu Bridge, it adopted its new name in December 2019. The 96,790 gt, 96,890 dwt ship has a capacity of 8930 TEU.

Sister ship ONE Helsinki called in Halifax July 30 and ONE Houston is due September 24.


Monday, August 23, 2021

Big Changes at PSA Halifax

On August 20 we learned through media that the thirty day written submission period was ending the next day for the latest "plans" deposited with the Canadian Impact Assessment Agency for a major redevelopment of the southend container terminal operated by PSA Halifax. No public notice had ever been posted by the Port, thus removing any reasonable opportunity to comment or make constructive suggestions.

The submission to CIAA was verbal only, with no engineering drawings or artists renderings to show the nature of the "proposed" work at and around the terminal, changes to roads, and to CN rail lines and another, perhaps unrelated, expansion of warehouse space at P+H Milling's flour mill. It would require a fairly intimate knowledge of the facility to determine how the changes would impact the public without seeing engineering drawings. A contact address was available to an engineering firm, but there was no way anyone could see the nature of the project in the submission itself, or even to learn if there had been comments received. Apparently work will now begin almost immediately.

In addition to additional tracks in the terminal, the truck arrival gate will be changed and several buildings removed or rebuilt. The area can be choked with truck traffic in the present configuration, resulting in long wait times for truckers. Can you count the trucks? [I counted fifty]

The "proposed" project will mean major disruptions to truck, train and likely car traffic, but there is no explanation of how this will be mitigated during construction.  It is also stated that a pedestrian and bicycle bridge will be built to assist in crossing tracks during train shunting. However the media report August 21 suggested that the bridge may be optional, or built much later.

Underutilized track between the terminal and the P+H flour mill (to the right of the pole in the photo) will be removed and the area converted to port workers' parking. The mill will also be expanding its warehouse space.

Those tracks were once heavily used before the container era. Freight was moved through pier sheds to and from box cars. It took some years for the full transition to containers.

In the early days of Halterm (now PSA Halifax) there was still freight being handled from general cargo ships through pier sheds into box cars, but container cars were also showing up on the tracks.
This pair of  sequential late 1973 or early 1974 photos show the original Halterm configuration, which has since been changed more than once as has the alignment of Marginal Road.

The top (colour) picture was taken from the Young Avenue bridge. The lower two (black and white) photos were taken from the Ogilvie Towers apartment building.


Sunday, August 22, 2021

HMCS Toronto in the Basin

 Reference has been made in the past to the Jonquière Bank anchorage in Bedford Basin, an area used by naval vessels for acoustical and other testing. See: Jonquière Bank

HMCS Toronto is the current occupant of the anchorage, using a spread of four or possibly five permanent mooring buoys to secure the ship in position.

In compliance with current government policy the ship was flying its flags at half staff to commemorate the hundreds of children whose remains have been detected in unmarked graves at former residential school sites.

HMCS Toronto FFH 333 was the fourth ship in the Halifax patrol frigate program. It was launched December 18, 1990 and commissioned July 29, 1983.


Thursday, August 19, 2021

MSC Sandra - full speed ahead

MSC Sandra made a day long call in Halifax today, August 19, to lighter off some cargo en route to Montreal.  Built in 2000 by Hanjin Heavy Industry + Construction Co Ltd, it is a 43,575 gt, 61,468 dwt ship with a container capacity of 4340 TEU, including 150 reefers.

Sailing this evening the ship still had a deck load of at most five high, but generally four high. This is still more than what I have seen in the past, such as my photo of almost exactly three years ago on the St.Lawrence when it was only loaded to three tiers high - and no containers on the after deck.

The ship is quite an impressive sight (and sound) at 18 knots or more. 

Halifax remains unaffected directly by port delays in the US, with such ports as New York/New Jersey and Savannah with  nine to seventeen ships (respectively) anchored offshore waiting several days for berths. There have been no diversions to Halifax, as a lot of the delays are in export cargo, due to truck and labour shortages.


Sigma T - taking a rest

 One of the busiest boats in Halifax is called the Sigma T, but it is perhaps not well known. Operated by the Department of Fisheries and Oceans from the Bedford Institute, it can be seen in Bedford Basin or out in the approaches on most days.

Built along modified fishing boat lines by Samson Enterprises in Arichat, NS, the boat is equipped with a small gantry and other gear to allow the vessel to carry out water sampling. The boats name represents a quantity used in oceanography to describe the density of salt water at a given temperature.

It is not the first boat to used the name. A previous boat in operation until 1999 was called Sigma-T (with a hyphen).

Sigma-T is seen here in January 1975 in winter layup at Purdy's Wharf with the Great Lakes vessel Northcliffe Hall preparing to sail to the Caribbean, the burned out ship Amvourgon on the south side of the pier and alongside the Fisheries Research Vessel Harengus. The Sigma-T was built in 1963 in Cheticamp, NS as Miss Valerie.

The current Sigma T appears to be in refit at BIO since mid-July, but the water sampling and measuring process goes on, I believe with the Connors Diving Services boat Eastcom filling in.

There seemed to be quite a crowd on deck - perhaps some summer students - while the Eastcom worked not far off the Bedford Institute yesterday. Eastcom was built by Millenium Marine Inc in Escuminac, NB in 2010.

Wednesday, August 18, 2021

APL Dublin - daylight arrival

 APL Dublin arrived in Halifax again today on the Columbus JAX service. This is the first time that it has arrived or sailed in full daylight, and so I was finally able to get a clear photo. 

APL Dublin passed the ZIM Yokohama, which has been anchored off Halifax since August 6.

It was not so long ago that ships with a capacity in excess of 10,000 TEU were a novelty in Halifax, but they are commonplace now. The only noticeable extra attention paid to them is the provision of a tethered escort tug at the stern. In today's case it was Atlantic Beaver taking up position off the pilot station, to be later joined by Atlantic Fir for docking.

APL Dublin dates from 2012 when Daewoo Shipbuilding +  Marine Engineering built the 128,929 gt, 131,204 dwt ship in Okpo, South Korea. Its capacity is listed as 10,960 TEU, but is nominally 11,000.

As for the mysterious ZIM Yokohama lurking offshore, it is shown on the port's arrival list for August 29. It sailed from Valencia, Spain on July 28 on its regular ZCA service. Its next port is to be New York, August 31. It is a 39,906 gt, 50,532 dwt ship with a capacity of 4250 TEU, built by Dalian New Shipbuilding, China in 2007.  It has been overtaken on its route by several other ZIM ships, including today's ZIM Monaco.


Tuesday, August 17, 2021

Sized to Suit - and a moth by any other name

 It was a matter of different strokes for different folks or as the British say - horses for courses - today, August 17 as bulk carriers of vastly different sizes arrived in Halifax.

Johanna C is a multi-purpose "Tween Open Hatch Box" type. It has box shaped holds, with portable tween decks, and hatches the full width of the hold. With a pair of 80 tonne cranes and 12 cubic meter grabs it is suitable for many types of bulk cargoes and all sorts of general and project cargoes. 

Hold cleaning and airing is underway as the ship arrives in Halifax this morning.

Owned by the British company Carisbrooke Shipping, and registered in Cowes, Isle of Wight, it is managed by SMT Shipping of Cyprus. The ship was built in 2009 by Jiangsu Yangzijiang of Jianyin, China, 9530 gt, 12,947 dwt. It arrived from Wilmington, North Carolina  to load wood pellets.

Towards the other end of the size scale the Chinese flag bulker Ri Guan Feng occupied number one anchorage for several hours. Built in 2010 by Jiangnan, Shanghai, for China Ocean Shipping Co (COSCO) is a 40,913 gt, 75,566 dwt ship of 225m over all length. That makes the ship a "Kamsarmax". The port of Kamsar, Guinea can only accommodate ships of a maximum length of 229m. As one of the busiest bauxite exporting ports in the world, many bulkers are built to suit the port.

Some supervisory gulls line the seawall at pier 41-42 as the ship gets underway for sea. 
Pilots face a long climb to embark or disembark while the ship is in ballast.

Indeed the ship loaded bauxite in Kamsar in July, discharged at Alcoa's refinery in San Ciprian (San Cibrao), Spain earlier this month, and sailed directly here in ballast. I imagine the ship was here for Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) clearance, before heading on for Sept-Iles, QC to load iron ore.

The CFIA inspection would be to ensure that the ship was not carrying the larvae of the Lymantria dispar, an invasive species of moth that threatens North American forests. The high mobility of the larvae, which can become air borne, gave the insect the common name of "gypsy moth". That name has now been recognized as an ethnic slur and out of respect for the Romani people (who are mistreated in many central European counties) the common name has been dropped by scientists and the Latin name, or its abbreviation L.dispar has entered general use until a new common name can be found. (CFIA does not appear have got on board yet.)


Monday, August 16, 2021

Another Bridge for Toronto

Cherubini Metal Works, the Halifax based bridge and steel fabricators, have completed the third of four bridges to be installed in Toronto harbour. Cherubini assembled the bridges at their Eisner's Cove facility in Dartmouth where they can be loaded directly to a barge for waterborne delivery to Toronto.

The latest bridge section has been rolled out on Cherubini's pier in Eisner's Cove.

Today saw the arrival of the tug Beverly M1 from McKeil Marine and the barge Glovertown Spirit which tied up at Cherubini's wharf ready to load. 

The barge Glovertown Spirit arrives with the tug Beverly M 1.

Loading will not take long, but the bridge must also be secured to the barge, so it may be three to four days before they are ready to sail. Shipfax will provide what coverage we can.


Friday, August 13, 2021

More Cable Ships

 Halifax has frequently hosted cable ships, going back to the early days of the technology. Western Union, the French cable company and others have made Halifax their base. In recent years IT International Telecom has established its marine base here and IT ships are in and out of port regularly. Their IT Intrepid is currently in port as is the offshore supplier Siem Dorado undergoing conversion for cable work. The general cargo ship Enna is still alongside the Siem Dorado possibly transferring cable or other gear.

A crane has lifted off a section of gunwale or transom from Siem Dorado and is landing it on the dock next to IT Intrepid at Pier 9A.

On August 12 another cable ship arrived, but for a completely different company. The Marshall Islands flag Durable is owned by Transoceanic Cable Ship Company LLC, a US corporation, with bases in Baltimore, MD and Honolulu. 

The ship was built by Keppel Hitachi in Singapore in 2002 as the Tyco Durable. When Tyco became over extended and failed, the ship was sold and renamed in 2010. Transoceanic has a huge contract with the US Navy, signed in 2018 and extending to 2023. Presumably it involves maintaining seabed communication and monitoring systems.

The Cable Wharf, adjacent to the Halifax ferry terminal, still uses the name, but has not been used for cable since the 1960s. It was once the Western Union wharf, and had a large storage building for cable and other equipment, and was the base for two famous cable ships the Cyrus Field and the Lord Kelvin. My 1971 photo of the "ferry plaza" between the Law Courts and  Queen's wharf is barely recognizable today.

Taken from beneath the Law Courts bridge across Water Street, the white building is the Fisherman's Market - most recently Nova Scotia Crystal. The Western Union building - long since demolished - is in the background.

 I have published the following photo before, showing the cable ship Lord Kelvin arriving in Halifax in 1955. 

There are several interpretive plaques on the Cable Wharf outlining the history of subsea cables.


Thursday, August 12, 2021

NYK Romulus

West coast North America port congestion has disrupted many shipping line schedules, including THE Alliance's AL5 service from North Europe via Halifax. Today's arrival NYK Romulus is east bound having skipped some calls in an effort to keep the ship, and its cargo, moving.

The ship was here last, westbound, May 29 and after calls in the Caribbean proceeded through the Panama Canal, missed its scheduled calls in Los Angeles and Oakland in early June, but was able to dock in Los Angeles June 19. After calling in Vancouver June 22 it called in Seattle June 28, and Oakland July 15, and skipped Los Angeles again.

After sailing from Halifax it will cross the Atlantic but will skip its Rotterdam call and is scheduled to go direct to Southampton. It is due back in Halifax on its next voyage  August 31.

The ship was built in 2009 by Hyundai, Samho. Measuring 55,487 gt, 65,883 dwt it has a capacity of 4922 TEU including 330 reefers. [All tonnage numbers have changed since the ship was delivered. Gross tonnage is a calculation - not a measurement - so when deadweight tonnage is adjusted, based on actual measurement, gross changes too.]

Wednesday, August 11, 2021

Fog in the Approaches

 The phrase "fog in the approaches" (to Halifax harbour) was once a common one when marine weather reports were broadcast on public radio. The phrase was particularly appropriate today. Fog lingered offshore and crept in and out with the tide, while the main harbour remained sunny and clear.

There were wisps of fog as MSC Angela got underway from PSA Halifax, bound for Montreal. The very high humidity meant that water vapour from the exhaust gas scrubber did not evaporate immediately and gave a "steamship-like" look.

Within a few ships' lengths, the ship was swallowed up by the fog. MSC Angela had reduced its deckload to four tiers of containers.

The departure of CMA CGM J. Adams a few hours later was largely invisible.

Once the arriving Atlantic Sun got well into the harbour, it was clear sailing through the Narrows.

Atlantic Fir was providing braking and steering assist from astern.

At the north end of the harbour and into Bedfrod Basin it was clear as a bell for another 100,000 tonner, as Conti Annapurna sailed from Cerescorp, Fairview Cove.

Built by Hyundai, Ulsan in 2004 as Pacific Link the 90,745 gt, 101,976 dwt ship has a capacity of 8738 TEU including 700 reefers. Renamed by NSB Niederelbe in 2016, the ship is a fairly recent addition to THE Alliance's EC5 service, which is introducing larger and larger ships. Soon to be classed (by me) as "Narrowsmax".

Also sailing from the Narrows in clear conditions was the "visiting" CCGS George R. Pearkes as it got underway from the Bedford Institute.

Normally based in Newfoundland, the Martha L. Black class light icebreaker and buoy tenders is covering for Halifax based ships in refit. Built by Versatile Pacific at the Burrard Drydock in North Vancouver, the ship was commissioned in 1986. It served in the Pacific region, then Quebec until assigned to St.John's in 2004.  It appeared to have an automated weather buoy on deck.

The only other activity that I was able to observe in the harbour today (unaffected by fog) was the continued off loading of rails at Pier 27 from Onego Maas.

The ship arrived in Halifax August 10 from Swinoujscie , Poland with the latest cargo for CN. The ship dates from 2011 when it was built by Damen, Yiching. It is a 8058 gt, 10,872 dwt ship with a pair of 80 tonne capacity cranes. It was launched as Wenningstedt but delivered as Thorco Copenhagen and subsequently renamed 2016: BBC Brasil, 2018: DC Brasil, 2019: BBC Brasil, and took its present name as recently as July 1, 2021. As with many general cargo ships it is a multi-purpose singledeck with portable tween decks and ventilated, box shaped holds. Its cranes can be operated in combo for a 150 tonne lift. It is also ice class  Swedish/Finnish 1A.


Tuesday, August 10, 2021

MSC Angela returns

 One of MSC's St.Lawrence service regulars, MSC Angela arrived again today to "decant" some cargo.

The ship is noted for its exceptionally high superstructure, which allows for a high deckload. On arrival from Sines, Portugal today, the deck was stacked to a maximum of five containers. When it was here in March I noted that the deckload was reduced to four high before it sailed for Montreal.

The ship was built by Zhejiang Yang Fan Shipbuilding Co Ltd as 41,225 gt, 50,628 dwt vessel of 4254 TEU including 550 reefers. When built it was considered to be a Panamax ship, but is now an "old" Panamax size.

Monday, August 9, 2021

HMCS Shawinigan

 The RCN Kingston class coastal defence vessel HMCS Shawinigan returned to Halifax today, August 9 after  working with US and Dutch authorities in Operation Caribe.

Over a 10 day period in mid-July Shawinigan participated in four small vessel interdictions in the Caribbean which resulted the seizure of 2800 kg of cocaine valued at $30 million. The drugs were landed and displayed to the public at Port Everglades, FL. Total haul for Operation Caribe was put at $1.6 billion.

There was no fanfare on the waterfront as Shawinigan returned home, with most bystanders unaware of the RCN's important role in policing the Caribbean.  I trust that there was an appropriate reception at HMC Dockyard.


Siem Super-Eco

A Siem Auto Carriers "Super-Eco" ship arrived today at Autoport. The dual fuel Pure Car and Truck Carrier was built in 2020 by Xiamen Shipbuilding Industry Co and uses LNG to supplement standard marine diesel oil.

With a massive gross of 72,900 tons and a capacity of 7500 RT43 car equivalent units, the Siem Aristotle has a very light 19,090 deadweight tonnes. 

The ship also has a 200 tonne capacity stern ramp and 20 tonne capacity side ramp, so it presumably can also carry RoRo cargo other than cars. Like sister ship Siem Confucius it is dedicated to Volkswagen service. It made its maiden voyage in Janauary of this year. 


Saturday, August 7, 2021

CMA CGM Thalassa

 It was a return appearance today for one of CMA CGM's "ultras". One of the nineteen ships in the Columbus JAX rotation it was once in the cohort of largest ships to call in Halifax. That was as recently as 2019 when cracking the 10,000 TEU mark was the record to strive for. Now the 17,000 TEU mark is the number to beat.

Built in 2008 by Daewoo Shipbuilding + Marine Engineering in Okpo, it is one of five ships of the Daewoo 11000 class. At 128,600 gt, 131,938 dwt it has a capacity 10,980 TEU including 700 reefers. A slightly larger fleet mate CMA CGM Libra preceded the ship in Halifax in January 2019 and its capacity of 11,388 TEU held the record for largest ship for a short time. However numbers can be complicated as my Shipfax post of  February 7, 2019 explained.

In comparing photos from 2019 with today's arrival, the ship appears to have loaded one more (an eighth) tier of boxes, compared to the seven tiers in 2019. Business is certainly booming as are charter rates for ships. Ships of this size are routinely being chartered for well in excess of $100,000 per day as compared to the $47,200 quoted in the 2019 post.


Friday, August 6, 2021

IT Integrity - trouble in BC

 The cable ship IT Integrity is reported tied up in Port Alberni, BC after its main engine was disabled due to "fuel issues". The Halifax registered ship, owned by interests connected to IT International Telecom Canada Inc.

Acquired last year, the former offshore supplier and ROV supporter Highland Fortress was built in 2001 by Soviknes Verft AS in Norway. It was refitted for cable work at Pier 9A in Halifax. It first arrived in Halifax May 28, 2020 and was registered September 21, 2020.
It sailed from Halifax May 15, 2021 and transited the Panama Canal Jun 8-9. It appears to have been working off California at least until July before moving on to British Columbia waters.

As part of the Halifax refit a large A-Frame assembly was installed aft, presumably for ROV work.