Astonishing Rates of Seafarer Suicide
The UK P&I Club is putting the spotlight on seafarer mental health with suicide the cause of 15% of deaths at sea. As a career seafarers are second most at risk from suicide Anuj Velankar, senior loss prevention advisor, UK P&I Club, told a seminar in Singapore on Tuesday. The career with the highest risk was being a veterinary physician, which was explained due to a tendency towards self-medication and a ready access to drugs. In the case of seafarers young age, isolation and the impact of social media were all cited as factors. Velankar noted that there were constantly reports of younger crew onboard, who were not experienced – “these are the people most at risk of mental health issues”.
Six Crew Taken Hostage
Six seamen were kidnapped after general cargo ship was attacked by pirates in Gulf of Guinea on 32 nautical miles southwest off Bonny island in Nigeria, reported International Maritime Bureau (IMB). The vessel was underway, when was approached by fast boat with armed men on board, who succeeded to board her and to take control. The pirates robbed the cabins and took six crew members as hostages and fled away. The crew of the general cargo ship reported the accident to Nigerian navy and proceeded to Bonny anchorage, where successfully docked for further investigation. According to the piracy report, the accident occurred in position 03 59N and 006 46E on 21 nautical miles south off Nigerian Coast and 32 nautical miles southwest off Bonny island.
IMO Polar Code Film
A new IMO film shows how the IMO Polar Code supports safe and environmentally-friendly shipping in Arctic and Antarctic waters. To make the new film, an IMO team visited the Ocean Diamond en voyage in the Antarctic, to find out at first-hand what the Code means for ships like this. As Ocean Diamond’s Captain Oleg Klaptenko confirmed, operating in Polar waters is the ultimate test of his ship and his skills as a professional seafarer. “There are several sources of danger. Low temperature, bad visibility, very long polar night and polar day. Remoteness from our home and from human facility that can help you. It is also lack of good, accurate and complete hydrographic service,” says Klaptenko.
3D Printed Propeller Beckons
Marking a major step forward in the application of 3D printing in the maritime sector, Netherlands-based Damen Shipyards Group has entered a cooperative consortium with the goal of developing the world’s first class-approved 3D printed ship propeller. The consortium was established by Damen with Rotterdam-based RAMLAB, Promarin, Autodesk, and class society Bureau Veritas. Damen says the idea for 3D printed propeller, to be called the WAAMpeller, is the result of one of its in-house student research programs. “Three students from Delft Technical University were investigating the potential of 3D printing for us. They brought us into contact with the other members of the consortium,” explains Kees Custers, Project Engineer in Damen’s Research & Development department.
New Seafarer Magna Carta
The Philippines’ House of Representatives committee on overseas workers has approved the “Magna Carta of Filipino Seafarers” bill. If passed into law, it will be applied to Filipino seafarers engaged, employed or working on board Philippines-registered ships operating domestically or internationally, as well as those on board foreign-registered ships. The Magna Carta states that seafarers have the right to safe and secure workplace that complies with safety standards; decent working and living conditions on board a ship; medical care, welfare measures and other forms of health and social protection; and fair terms and conditions of employment including salary commensurate to their rank, minimum number of working hours, and rest periods consistent with Philippine or international maritime conventions.