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February 13th, 2018 at 11:33 am

Bryant’s Maritime Blog – 13 February 2018


MERPAC – meeting on 20-22 March;

MARAD – US-flag launch barges;

St. Lawrence Seaway – proposed changes to Handbook;


EU – operational cooperation with Albania;

ReCAAP – January report; and

Panama Canal – maximum allowable draft increased.

February 13, 2018

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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. Don’t believe everything you think.

MERPAC – meeting on 20-22 March

clip_image004 The Merchant Marine Personnel Advisory Committee (MERPAC), sponsored by the US Coast Guard, will meet on 20-22 March in New Orleans. Topics on the agenda include STCW implementation and fatigue mitigation and management. 83 Fed. Reg. 6205 (2/13/18) [].

MARAD – US-flag launch barges

clip_image006 The Maritime Administration (MARAD) issued a notice stating that it is updating its list of US-flag launch barges. Additions, deletions, and comments should be submitted by 15 March. 83 Fed. Reg. 6309 (2/13/18) [].

St. Lawrence Seaway – proposed changes to Handbook

clip_image008 The Great Lakes-St. Lawrence Seaway System issued a notice announcing proposed changes to the Seaway Practices and Procedures. Comments must be received by 15 March. (2/12/18) [].


clip_image010 The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) issued a news release stating that the COSPAS/SARSAT module on its weather satellites aided in the rescue of 275 persons in 2017. (2/8/18) []. Note: The satellites pick up alerts from EPIRBs and PLBs and transmit the location to ground facilities. Without an EPIRB or PLB, you are SOL.

EU – operational cooperation with Albania

clip_image012 The European Union (EU) issued a press release stating that the European Border and Coast Guard Agency has strengthened its operational cooperation with Albania. (2/12/18) [].

ReCAAP – January report

clip_image014 The ReCAAP Information Sharing Centre issued its report of incidents of piracy and armed robbery against ships in Asia in January 2018. Reports were received of five actual incidents and two attempted instances, down from a total of ten such incidents in January 2017. (2/12/18) [].

Panama Canal – maximum allowable draft increased

clip_image016 The Panama Canal Authority (ACP) issued an advisory announcing that, effective immediately, the maximum allowable draft for vessels transiting the Neopanamax locks has been increased to 15.2 meters (50.0 feet) Tropical Fresh Water (TFW). Advisory 05-2018 (2/9/18) [].

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Dennis L. Bryant

Bryant’s Maritime Consulting

4845 SW 91st Way
Gainesville, FL 32608-8135



© Dennis L. Bryant – February 2018

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    logo11 BWM reform

    In the January 2019 edition of Maritime Reporter and Engineering News, you can find my article entitled "BWM reform". The article discusses the recent enactment of the Vessel Incidental Discharge Act of 2018 (VIDA). The Act greatly reforms the process for regulation of ballast water discharges into waters of the United States. It not only brings the US ballast water management (BWM) regulatory scheme into closer alignment with the international standard, but it also largely eliminates the authority of states and tribal govenments to establish their own standards. Full implementation will take time, but there is light at the end of this particular tunnel.