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Ports & Ships Maritime News

10 May 2016
Author: Terry Hutson

Bringing you shipping, freight, trade and transport related news of interest for Africa since 2002


Click on headline to go direct to story : use the BACK key to return


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Asian Adonis, Lyttelton 03 04 16 480

The Japanese reefer vesssel ASIAN ADONIS (8,753-dwt, built 1999) arriving at the New Zealand South Island port of Lyttelton to discharge bananas from Ecuador. Not the best of light to photograph a white ship, says the photographer, but then you take what you can get. The picture is by Alan Calvert.

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Safmarine Meru arr Fremantle 27 Sept 2009 on Mae
Safmarine Meru

The Safmarine container ship SAFMARINE MERU (62,242-dwt, built 2006) caught fire after colliding with another container ship, NORTHERN JASPER (107,500-dwt, built 2009) in the South China Sea. The 4,800-TEU Safmarine ship was en route from Qingdao to Ningbo, both in China and was lightly loaded with only 400 containers on board.

The collision took place on Saturday, 7 May at 01h13 local time, leaving severe damage to the Safmarine vessel on which some containers caught fire. The collision occurred approximatey 120 n.miles east of Ningbo.

As a result of the collision and subsequent fire, the crew of 22 on the Safmarine vessel abandoned ship by transferring to the Northern Jasper. The Safmarine crew were later transferred to the shore where they could receive any necessary medical care and crisis couselling.

"We are very relieved that our crew are safe and have not suffered any serious injuries. The safety of our people, at sea and on shore, is paramount to us," said Palle Brodsgaard Laursen, Head of Ship Management at Maersk Line, the owner of Safmarine.

"It is too early to comment on the circumstances surrounding the collision and fire. Our focus now is to put the fire out and get access to the vessel to assess damage to the vessel and cargo."

According to reports the fire was not visible but appeared confined to containers from which smoke was appearing.

Safmarine Meru has previously appeared on services to and from South Africa. She is currently operating with the Maersk TP18 (Transpacific 18) service between Asia and the US Gulf.

Safmarine Meru was built at the Hyundai Heavy Industries Ltd shipyard in South Korea as their hull number 1699.

Northern Jasper is owned by Norddeutsche Reederei NAV of Germany and is, ironically, operated by Maersk. The ship was built at the Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering Ltd shipyard in South Korea as that yard's hull number 4175.

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IMG 9605 Copy 480 Berth 1 & 2 reconstruction at Maydon Wharf. Picture TNPA

World Hydrographic Day
The Port of Durban is to partner with the South African Navy in hosting the country's 2016 World Hydrographic Day celebrations, which will take place from 15 to 19 June 2016.

Proposed activities this year include the arrival of five navy ships and possibly a submarine in the port. The public will be invited to view the SA Navy ships at N-Shed on the weekend of 18 and 19 June. There will also be a navy parade from the City Hall to the Port of Durban on the Saturday morning.

The last time the event was celebrated in Durban was in 2013. Last year's event took place in the Port of East London.

Dredging Update
In other news from the Port of Durban, by the end of April Berth 204 at the Durban Container Terminal, Pier 2, was declared to depth, bringing all Durban Container Terminal berths to depth for the period 16 April to 3 May.

The departmental plough dredger IMPISI worked berths B, D and 204 and the grab hopper dredger ITALENI worked berth A during April. The large trailing suction hopper dredger ILEMBE is scheduled to work in the Port of Durban during May and an external dredger has been hired from Subtech to begin work in early June 2016.

Maydon Wharf berth reconstruction
Overall physical civil construction work on the Maydon Wharf berth reconstruction project has reached 55 percent completion, with dredging at 30 percent and scour protection at 1 percent completion.

Individual berth status here is as follows:

  • Berth 1 : Civil works 91.5 percent; dredging 100 percent; scour protection 42 percent

  • Berth 2 : Civil works 88.5 percent; dredging 100 percent; scour protection 50 percent

  • Berth 13 : Civil works 87.5 percent; dredging 30 percent; scour protection 0 percent

  • Berth 14 : Civil works 73 percent; dredging 1 percent; scour protection 0 percent
  • Recent achievements include the completion of the cope beam at Berth 14 and of the SAS crane rail beam at Berth 2. source: Port of Durban

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    Increasing numbers of oil rigs on the African coast are joining the world's idle fleet as the oil price drags the industry into one of its worst slow-downs which is affecting new reserves and exploration.

    The number of oil and gas rigs offshore of Africa is now at 20, the lowest it has been since 2009 when the world was last in an economic downturn (the modern name for depression). According to data published last week by Baker Hughes Inc, onshore rigs fell by one to 70 in March, leaving the total for Africa at 90 (that's including North Africa), close to the lowest in four years.

    And according to a report published by Bloomberg, only a third of potential projects in Africa have investment appeal. The report quoted London-based analyst Tudor Pickering Holt & Co as saying that exploration activity has largely dried up and is unlikely to return anytime soon.

    Rigs in operation in Angola and NIgeria are among those that have decreased by almost half in number, and these are Africa's biggest producers. Only Algeria with an increase to 55 rigs has increased in activity.

    The question of oil exploration remains dependent on the price of crude and with the current price hovering around the US$49.50 mark for Brent, an upturn in the immediate future appears unlikely.

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    Carnival Vista

    Carnival Cruise Line has welcomed its latest newbuild, the 133,500-ton CARNIVAL VISTA into service.

    The 3,954-passenger ship has been delivered at the Fincantieri shipyard in Italy and was repositioned to Trieste where the ship departed on her first cruise in the Mediterranean. She will continue cruising in European waters until October when she repositions by way of a 13-day trans-Atlantic crossing to operate a couple of 11-day cruises out of New York followed by an all-year round cruising schedule from Miami into the Caribbean.

    Among Carnival Vista's many attractions is the first IMAX Theatre at sea -- a 187-seat theatre with a screen a full 3 decks high to provide the authentic touch. The IMAX forms part of the ship's Carnival Multiplex, which includes the Thrill Theater, a multi-dimensional experience replete with moving seats and water and bubble sprays.

    Carnival says the IMAX will be showing Hollywood blockbusters family favourites and IMAX documentaries. The charge for attending the IMAX theatre at sea is US$12.95 for adults and $9.95 for children under 12 and guests of 55 and over for first-run movies.

    Other features on board this ship are a breathtaking suspended cycling experience called SkyRide, and the RedFrog Pub & Brewery offering three different kinds of beer brewed on board.

    The ship also features a new innovation called 'Family Harbor' which has special family accommodations and a family concierge, along with the tropics-inspired Havana staterooms and suites featuring a dedicated pool area. The ship's outdoor spaces include a massive WaterWorks aqua park, highlighted by the 455-foot-long Kaleid-o-slide, the longest slide in the fleet.

    "Carnival Vista is a spectacular addition to our fleet and we can't wait for our guests to experience all of the ship's exciting new features," said Christine Duffy, president of Carnival Cruise Line.

    "Carnival Vista will provide our guests an opportunity to create a lifetime of wonderful vacation memories while offering our valued travel agent partners another exciting vacation option to market to their clients," she added.

    Viking announces World Cruise for fourth ship

    news vi world cruise 2017 480
    Impression of what Viking Sun will look like when she enters service next year

    Just a few days prior to christening the second Viking Cruises ship VIKING SEA at Greenwich in the Thames River in the UK, newcomer to ocean cruising Viking Ocean Cruises announced that their fourth newbuild ship, VIKING SUN, will spend her maiden season embarking on the company's first World Cruise.

    This will take the 47,800 ton, 930 passenger ship on a 141-day cruise to 35 countries and 66 ports, with 12 overnights.

    Viking Sun enters service in late 2017.

    Sadly the World Cruise does not include a visit to Southern Africa. Guest wanting to join the ship in Los Angeles will be able to do so making this a 120-day segment of the cruise.

    As with all Viking itineraries, World Cruise guests will enjoy a complimentary shore excursion in each of the 66 ports and free unlimited Wi-Fi; they will also receive Business Class airfare and all gratuities and service fees, along with an extensive list of added-value inclusions in their cruise fare.

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    French-built DCNS Shortfin Barracuda submarine on which the Australian Navy diesel-powered submarines will be based. Picture courtesy DCNS

    Towards the end of April it was announced from Australia that the Government had selected DCNS as its preferred international partner for the design of twelve future submarines for the Royal Australian Navy.

    This announcement was made by the Australian Prime Minister the Hon. Malcolm Turnbull, the Minister for Defence, Senator the Hon. Marise Payne, the Minister for Industry, Innovation and Science, the Hon. Christopher Pyne and the Chief of Navy, Vice-Admiral Tim Barrett.

    The Australian Government communique stated: "The decision was driven by DCNS's ability to best meet all of the Australian Government's requirements. These included superior sensor performance and stealth characteristics, as well as range and endurance similar to the Collins Class submarine. The Government's considerations also included cost, schedule, programme execution, through-life support and Australian industry involvement."

    French warship builder DCNS Chairman and CEO, Mr Herve Guillou commented: "This success has been made possible thanks to the strong teamwork between the French Authorities, DCNS and our industrial partners. France and Australia have been allies for more than 100 years and we look forward to further strengthening this time honoured relationship and honouring the trust the Australian Commonwealth Government is placing in us for this ground breaking project."

    Subject to discussions on commercial matters, the design of the Future Submarine with DCNS will begin this year.

    Paul Ridgway

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    1637949 shipspotting Gowind Adroit 480
    Picture courtesy DCNS

    Earlier in the month Alexandria Shipyard started cutting metal for the first Gowind 2500 corvette built in Egypt, in the presence of high ranking representatives of the Egyptian Navy and of DCNS technical assistance and management teams.

    The Egyptian Navy chose French naval shipbuilder DCNS to design and build four Gowind 2500 corvettes with a construction technology transfer. The contract, which entered into force in July 2015, provides for the construction of the first ship within 29 months. It is now being built by DCNS in Lorient. The three following units will be built by Egyptian partner Alexandria Shipyard.

    DCNS has sent supervisory and technical assistance teams to Alexandria for the construction of the three corvettes through technology transfer. DCNS also provides training of the Egyptian shipyard staff at DCNS site in Lorient. Finally, DCNS will deliver all technical data required for the construction of the corvettes as well as necessary components.

    About DCNS
    DCNS is a European leader in naval defence and a major player in marine renewable energy. DCNS designs and builds submarines and surface combatants, develops associated systems and infrastructure, and offers a full range of services to naval bases and shipyards. The Group has also expanded its focus into marine renewable energy. Aware of its corporate social responsibilities, DCNS is a member of the United Nations Global Compact. The DCNS Group generates annual revenues of 3.04 billion Euros and employs 12,953 people (2015 data).

    Paul Ridgway

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    images 2

    The recently successful upgrade of Navis software from version 2.3 to 2.6 at all Transnet Port Terminals (TPT) sites across the country has once again positioned them at the forefront of terminal operations, TPT believes. And according to the GM of EIMS at TPT, Deirdre Ackermann, this seamless transition to the industry's most advanced operating system available was no small feat.

    "We pulled out all the stops to ensure that this upgrade was incident-free, which included undertaking a number of interventions to mitigate the business risks for both Transnet Port Terminals and our customers," stated Ackermann.

    She explained that TPT drew on experience gained from previous installations and upgrades of Navis which led them to taking on a new approach for this particular installation. This approach involved the system undergoing four types of testing that included user acceptance testing, stress testing, an emulation tool, and finally a roll-back solution which tested that TPT was able to revert back to the existing Navis 2.3 system if needed. Terminal staff were also trained in readiness for the switchover and TPT 'super users' as well as Navis engineers were on standby to assist while the upgrade was taking place.

    "I believe the success of this software migration was as a result of our client's cooperation, TPT's thorough preparation and new testing approach that gave us the confidence to be ready for any unforeseen situation if it had come to light, but ultimately it enabled us to deal flawlessly with this upgrade and without detriment to operations.

    "Our constant communication with clients throughout the process has also been key and I would like to thank our customers for their contribution to all the phases of the upgrade. TPT's central Command Centre is still open until 18 May 2016 to address any concerns or questions our customers may have 24/7," Ackermann added.

    This latest Navis version boasts a number of new features like enhanced rail functionality, improved performance and scalability, amongst others. The software is the only solution that allows planning and operational staff to view, manage and control multiple terminals from a central location at the click of a button. Key enhancements available in the N4 2.6 include a refreshed planning and control user interface (UI), robust system management and administration capabilities, tools to ease N4 migrations and improvements to electronic data interchange and gate functionality.

    "We believe that with this new software we will be better equipped than ever before to handle increased capacity. The Navis upgrade is part of TPT's infrastructure investment strategy, which forms part of Transnet's Market Demand Strategy (MDS)," said Ackermann.

    This upgrade will be complemented by ongoing investment in the terminals, such as the introduction of tandem lift cranes for moving empties, the speeding up of transit through the gates and the modernisation of rail terminals operated by TPT in the ports.

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    Request a Rate Card frominfo@ports.co.za


    Port Louis 470
    Port Louis - Indian Ocean gateway port

    Ports & Ships publishes regularly updated SHIP MOVEMENT reports including ETAs for ports extending from West Africa to South Africa to East Africa and including Port Louis in Mauritius.

    In the case of South Africa's container ports of Durban, Ngqura, Ports Elizabeth and Cape Town links to container Stack Dates are also available.

    You can access this information, including the list of ports covered, by going HERE remember to use your BACKSPACE to return to this page.

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    QM2 in Cape Town. Picture by Ian Shiffman

    We publish news about the cruise industry here in the general news section, but this is also available in a dedicated Cruise News section. This section will include various stories and news not covered in the general news so if you have an interest in this sector don't forget to check regularly on our CRUISE NEWS page.

    This you will find here in CRUISE NEWS & REVIEWS

    Naval News
    SA Navy 480

    Similarly you can read our regular Naval News reports and stories which also have their own dedicated section, although some stories may be duplicated in the general news section.

    Find the Naval Review section HERE

    Remember to use your backspace key to return to this page.


    DE LAPEROUSE IMG 9045 (2) 480

    Jan de Nul's Luxemburg-registered suction hopper dredger DE LAPEROUSE (5440-dwt, built 2010), which is handling the dredging operations at the Maydon Wharf reconstruction site (see article above), has aroused attention recently with her regular journeys in the entrance channel, as she takes spoil out to the disposal grounds some miles out at sea. This picture is by Keith Betts.


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