OSHA – whistleblower protection for seamen;
SLSDC- proposed changes to Seaway rules;
SHC – meeting re flag state implementation;
CBP – relocation of Regulations and Rulings;
DOI – Ocean Energy Safety Advisory Committee;
House – bill introduced to amend OPA 90;
Senate – bill introduced HMT expenditures;
Court – voluntary dismissal of limitation action;
Washington – LNG-fueled ferries;
UNCTAD – review of maritime transport;
Australia – man overboard fatality;
Canada – LNG export license approval;
Suez Canal – toll increase;
Philippines & US – USS Guardian grounding; and
UK – seafarer statistics 2012.
February 6, 2013
Bryant’s Maritime Blog
Bryant’s Maritime Consulting – 4845 SW 91st Way – Gainesville, FL 32608-8135 – USA
Note: This blog is one section of the Bryant’s Maritime Consulting website. Visit the site for more extensive maritime regulatory information. Individual concerns may be addressed by retaining Dennis Bryant directly. Much of the highlighted text in this newsletter constitutes links to Internet sites providing more detailed information. Links on this page may be in PDF format, requiring use of Adobe Acrobat Reader. Comments on these postings are encouraged and may be made by clicking the envelope that appears at the end of each posting. Be aware that the daily blog entry is a single posting, even though it contains a number of individual items. Look to the past, unless you want to see the future.
OSHA – whistleblower protection for seamen
The Occupational Safety and health Administration (OSHA) promulgated an interim final rule implementing the employee protection (whistleblower) provisions of the Seaman’s Protection Act. The rule, which comes into effect immediately, establishes procedures and time frames for handling retaliation complaints. Comments on the interim rule should be submitted by 8 April. 78 Fed. Reg. 8390 (February 6, 2013).
SLSDC – proposed changes to Seaway rules
The Saint Lawrence Seaway Development Corporation (SLSDC) and the St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corporation (SLSMC) propose to amend the Seaway Regulations and Rules. The proposal addresses: Condition of Vessels; Seaway Navigation; Dangerous Cargo; and Information and Reports. Comments on the proposal should be submitted by 8 March. 78 Fed. Reg. 8476 (February 6, 2013).
SHC – meeting re flag state implementation
The Shipping Coordinating Committee (SHC), sponsored by the Department of State (DOS), will meet in Washington, DC on 25 February to prepare for the upcoming session of the IMO Flag State Implementation Sub-Committee. Topics on the agenda include: casualty statistics and investigations; harmonization of port state control activities; seafarers’ hours of rest; and ballast water management guidelines. 78 Fed. Reg. 8682 (February 6, 2013).
CBP – relocation of Regulations and Rulings
The US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) issued a notice stating that, effective 4 February, Regulations and Rulings, Office of International Trade, has relocated from the US Mint Annex Building to 90 K Street NE, Washington, DC 20229-1177. Telephone numbers are unchanged. 78 Fed. Reg. 8550 (February 6, 2013).
DOI – Ocean Energy Safety Advisory Committee
The Department of the Interior (DOI) issued a notice stating that the Secretary has renewed the Ocean Energy Safety Advisory Committee. 78 Fed. Reg. 8575 (February 6, 2013).
House – bill introduced to amend OPA 90
Representative Capps (D-CA) introduced the Oil Pollution Research and Development Program Reauthorization Act of 2013 (H.R. 373) to amend title VII of the Oil Pollution Act of 1990, and for other purposes. (1/23/13).
Senate – bill introduced re HMT expenditures
Senator Levin (D-MI) introduced a bill (S. 218) to ensure that amounts credited to the Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund are used for harbor maintenance. Official text of the bill is not yet available, but Senator Levin issued a press release discussing the need for this legislation. (2/4/13).
Court – voluntary dismissal of limitation action
In an unpublished decision, the US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit ruled that a vessel owner may voluntarily dismiss its petition for exoneration from or limitation of liability where all the claims filed against it in the matter have been resolved. In re Complaint of M&P Barge Company, No. 12-30607 (5th Cir., February 4, 2013).
Washington – LNG-fueled ferries
The Washington State Department of Transportation issued a notice stating that it is exploring an option to use liquefied natural gas (LNG) as a source of fuel for propulsion of Washington State ferries. It has received conceptual approval from the US Coast Guard to retrofit the propulsion system with new engines on the six Issaquah Class ferries to use LNG as a source of fuel. (2/1/13).
UNCTAD – review of maritime transport
The United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) posted its Review of Maritime Transport 2012. The Review notes that international shipping grew by 4% during 2011, fueled primarily by the container and dry bulk trades. The world fleet continues to expand and freight rates are often at unprofitable levels. (12/4/12). Note: This item was brought to my attention by my good friend Jean-Philippe Gobillon of Adnavis BVBA.
Australia – man overboard fatality
The Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) issued the report of its investigation into a man overboard fatality from a container ship off Fremantle, Western Australia on 17 November 2011. The ordinary seaman died after being swept off an accommodation ladder that he was rigging. He was wearing a safety harness and harness rope. While working on the bottom platform, an unexpectedly high wave struck, leaving the seaman hanging below the platform. Rolling of the ship caused him to be banged against the hull several times before he came out of his harness and fell into the water. His body was never recovered. MO-2011-010 (2/5/13).
Canada – LNG export license approval
The Canadian National Energy Board (NEB) issued a news release stating that it approved an application by LNG Canada Development for a license to export liquefied natural gas (LNG) from a proposed terminal near Kitimat, British Columbia for a period of 25 years. (2/4/13).
Suez Canal – toll increase
The Suez Canal Authority issued its Toll Circular. The increased tolls will come into effect on 1 May 2013. (1/31/13).
Philippines & US – USS Guardian grounding
The Government of the Philippines issued a Joint Statement between the Philippines and the United States on the USS Guardian grounding on Tubbataha Reef. The US Ambassador expressed his regrets over the grounding and assured that compensation will be provided for damage to the reef. The Philippine Coast Guard will conduct an investigation in accordance with the IMO casualty investigation procedures, in which the US will participate. Salvage operations will commence shortly. (2/5/13). Note: This item was brought to my attention by my good friend Bob Couttie of the Marine Accident Casebook.
UK – seafarer statistics 2012
The UK Department for Transport posted Seafarer Statistics 2012. The total number of UK seafarers active at sea in 2012 was estimated to be 24,100, a decrease of 10% from 2011. In 2012, there were an estimated 10,930 UK certified officers active at sea, down slightly from the estimated 11,000 in 2011. (1/31/13).
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If you have questions regarding the above items, please contact the editor:
Dennis L. Bryant
Bryant’s Maritime Consulting
4845 SW 91st Way
Gainesville, FL 32608-8135
© Dennis L. Bryant – February 2013