Indian Seafarer Wage Success
Indian sailors stranded in Scotland are a step closer to home after a court ruled they are due more than £668,000 in unpaid wages. The crew of the Malaviya Seven have not been paid in a year and the ship has been barred from leaving Aberdeen since October. Many of them have not seen their families for even longer and several have been forced to take out loans to provide for their loved ones.
Cruise Lights Out
An Australian journalist has reported that passengers on a round-the-world cruise this year had to spend 10 nights with the ship darkened. Curtains were drawn, and there weren’t any evening festivities on deck on the “Sea Princess” as she travelled through the Indian Ocean, the Arabian Sea, the Gulf of Aden and the Suez Canal. Carolyne Jasinski said there were rumors about a terror attack, but the master Captain Gennaro Arma told the 1,900 passengers that the measures were the result of piracy concerns. Bright lights were dimmed or turned off. “She was a ghost ship,” wrote Jasinski.
Perfect Recruitment Storm
A perfect storm of retiring baby-boomers and the ongoing global economic downturn, are causing the number of skilled seafarers in the global industry to shrink dramatically, but apparently automation and advances in connectivity could solve the looming skills crisis. Captain Lloyd of the Nautical Institute commented: “The increasing sophistication of technology is opening the door to serious discussions about the remote control of ships, perhaps one day leading to completely autonomous vessels.” Something the Nautical Institute members will be watching with increased horror no doubt, as jobs are threatened.
IMO Biofouling Focus
The IMO is moving its attention to hull biofouling after its success with preparations for the Ballast Water Management Convention in developing nations. A new global project, the GloFouling Partnership, a collaboration between the Global Environment Facility (GEF), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the IMO, has been given the go-ahead and allocated $6.9 million. The project will focus on the implementation of the IMO Guidelines for the control and management of ships’ biofouling. The Guidelines (resolution MEPC.207(62)) are intended to provide a globally consistent approach to biofouling.
DNV Completes Drone Survey
DNV GL surveyors have carried out the classification society’s first offshore drone survey on the semisubmersible vessel Safe Scandinavia in the North Sea. This 25,383 GT tender support vessel (TSV) is owned and operated by Prosafe, supporting Statoil’s drilling operations off the coast of Norway. Using camera-equipped drones, DNV GL’s drone pilots checked the TSV’s fairleads and their connection with the vessel’s two columns as part of the intermediate survey. The classification society has carried out multiple drone surveys on both ships and offshore units, inspecting many areas on board.