Tuesday, August 11, 2009
On Tuesday, August 11, 2009, SAFE Solutions, LLC will be showcasing the latest strategies and techniques in dealing with the ongoing problem of piracy on the high seas. The ship “Horizon Challenger” will be outfitted with the Nemesis 5000: a non-lethal, extremely high pressure water system which will repel and deter pirates. The demonstration will be taking place at the Bayonne Drydock, in Bayonne, New Jersey at 1:45PM. The Nemesis 5000 was designed and invented by a former member of the British Special Boat Service with more than two decades experience in dealing with maritime issues. Hector Delgado, President of SAFE Solutions, stated “If you are a pirate, business is booming: According to the ICC International Maritime Bureau’s Piracy Reporting Centre (IMB), piracy attacks around the world more than doubled to 240 from 114 during the first six months of 2009 compared with the same period in 2008. It is something that, ultimately, affects all of us. In fact, Lloyd’s recently stated that the cost of insurance for vessels going through the Gulf of Aden now costs approximately $20,000 per vessel, per voyage. This is staggering considering that just a year ago the same insurance coverage cost just $500. This cost, at least in part, is being passed on the consumer.” The Nemesis 5000 is non-lethal and surrounds the ship with a “wall of water” which prevents pirates from boarding the ship. Further, it does not require specialists for its installation, maintenance, and use. By connecting directly to the ship’s fire suppression system, adequate water pressure is guaranteed. And, if a fire (or even multiple fires) breaks out on board the ship in the midst of a pirate attack, the Nemesis 5000 will not affect the performance of the fire suppression system.
Thursday, August 6, 2009
Tuesday, August 4, 2009
Monday, August 3, 2009
On July 15, 2009, the U.S. Department of Justice announced that the Captain and Chief Officer of a foreign vessel pled guilty in the Eastern District of Louisiana (New Orleans) to charges that included not only the Act to Prevent Pollution from Ships (APPS), False Statements and Obstruction of Justice; but also failure to notify the Coast Guard of hazardous conditions and charges related to presentation of false or incomplete ballast tank reports.The case involved two primary issues: (1) a 24-inch outer-hull crack in the vessel’s rudder stem, which created a condition that adversely affected the safety and operation of the vessel; and (2) fuel oil in a ballast tank due to a leaking “deep” fuel tank in the forward part of the vessel.For the first time, criminal charges were brought against a person for violation of the Non-Indigenous Aquatic Uses and Prevention Control Act 16. U.S.C. § 4711(g). The Chief Officer was charged under the Act because he presented a Ballast Report that did not record efforts by the crew to deal with contamination of a ballast tank by an adjacent leaking fuel tank. The Captain not only failed to report the condition to the Coast Guard, but caused oil-contaminated water to be discharged in an attempt to clean the ballast tank. Prior to arrival at a terminal in New Orleans, the Captain attempted to conceal the condition by ordering that a hose with a stopper at one end and partially filled with water be fitted to the ballast tank’s sounding tube in order to give Coast Guard inspectors the misimpression that the ballast tank was filled with clean water. Those actions led to charges for the failure to maintain an accurate oil record book (i.e., one that recorded the discharge of oil-contaminated water) and Obstruction of Justice.In addition to an APPS violation and Obstruction of Justice – charges frequently seen in vessel pollution cases – the Captain was charged under the Ports and Waterways Safety Act (PWSA) with failing to notify the nearest U.S. Coast Guard Sector or Group Office that hazardous conditions existed aboard the vessel, namely the rudder stem crack and leak between the fuel and ballast tanks.Ports and Waterways Safety ActThe PWSA provides civil and criminal penalties for violating the Act or regulations issued pursuant to the Act. 33 U.S.C. § 1232. Coast Guard regulations require the owner, agent, master, operator, or person in charge of a vessel to immediately notify the nearest Coast Guard Sector or Group Office whenever there is a hazardous condition aboard or caused by the vessel. 33 C.F.R. § 160.215. A willful and knowing violation is a felony punishable by less than ten but more than five years in prison. While not an issue in this case, it is worth noting that using a weapon or “engag[ing] in conduct that causes … fear of bodily injury” to Coast Guard officials enforcing the regulations is punishable by less than 25 but more than ten years in prison.The charges against the Chief Officer involved his presentation to the Coast Guard of a false Ballast Report, which includes soundings and volumes of water in ballast tanks. The report contained false entries and omissions as to the level of liquid in the ballast tank at issue, the specific gravity of the liquid in the tank, and the hydrocarbon nature of the liquid. The Chief Officer was charged with Making False Statements and with violating the Non-Indigenous Aquatic Nuisance Prevention and Control Act.Non-Indigenous Aquatic Nuisance Prevention and Control ActThe Non-Indigenous Aquatic Nuisance Prevention and Control Act provides civil and criminal penalties for violating regulations issued pursuant to the Act. 16 U.S.C. § 4711(g). Coast Guard regulations require the master, owner, operator or person in charge of a vessel to keep written records that include detailed ballast tank and water information, such as the capacity and volume of tanks, the origin of ballast water, and the date, location and volume of water discharged. 33 C.F.R. § 151.2045. A knowing violation is a felony punishable by less than ten but more than five years in prison.The result in this case could have been avoided had the master and chief officer properly reported the unsafe conditions to the Coast Guard, discharged the oil/water mixture in the ballast tank in compliance with MARPOL, not rigged a hose to the ballast tank sounding tube in an effort to trick Coast Guard inspectors, and presented records that completely and accurately reflected onboard efforts to deal with the contaminated ballast tank. Vessel operators must be vigilant in enforcing their environmental compliance plans and requiring crew members to promptly notify authorities of unsafe conditions (such as a cracked rudder stem and contaminated ballast tank). It remains to be seen whether the vessel’s owners or operators will be held criminally liable for the acts of the vessel’s Captain and the Chief Officer – either based on direct knowledge of the events or through a theory of vicarious liability.
Sunday, August 2, 2009
Saturday, August 1, 2009
Friday, July 31, 2009
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
Monday, July 27, 2009
Sunday, July 26, 2009
Saturday, July 25, 2009
Thursday, July 23, 2009
John Joseph Cota, the pilot who caused the Cosco Busan, a 900-ft long container ship, to collide with the San Francisco Bay Bridge and discharge approximately 53,000 gallons of oil into San Francisco Bay, was sentenced to serve 10 months in federal prison by U.S. District Court Judge Susan Illston for the Northern District of California, the Justice Department announced.Cota, who was a licensed bar pilot at the time of the collision, gave commands that caused the 65,131-ton Hong Kong-registered ship to collide with the bridge on Nov. 7, 2007.Cota was sentenced according to an agreement in which he pleaded guilty to negligently causing discharge of a harmful quantity of oil in violation of the Clean Water Act (CWA), as amended by the Oil Spill Act of 1990 - a law passed in the wake of the 1989 Exxon Valdez disaster - and to violating the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, by causing the death of protected species of migratory birds.In papers filed in court, prosecutors told the judge that Captain Cota should receive a sentence of incarceration because he was "guilty of far more than a mere slip-up or an otherwise innocuous mistake that yielded unforeseeably grave damage. Rather, he made a series of intentional and negligent acts and omissions, both before and leading up to the incident that produced a disaster that, as widespread as it was, could have had even worse consequences.""Captain Cota abandoned ship by not following required safety procedures which then resulted in an environmental disaster" said John C. Cruden, Acting Assistant Attorney for the Justice Department's Environment and Natural Resources Division."The court's sentence of John Cota should serve as a deterrent to shipping companies and mariners who think violating the environmental laws that protect our nation's waterways will go undetected or unpunished," said Joseph P. Russoniello, U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of California. "They will be vigorously prosecuted."Prosecutors provided the court with a list of Cota's errors that included the following:Captain Cota left in extreme fog that was so thick that the bow of the vessel was not visible from the bridge. Captain Cota made the decision to leave in the fog while the pilots of six other large commercial vessels decided not to depart in the heavy fog which was less than 0.5 nautical miles.Having made the decision to leave port in impenetrable fog, Captain Cota took no action to assure the fortification of the bridge or bow watch or review the passage plan with the master and crew of the Cosco Busan. In particular, Cota failed to have a master-pilot exchange to review the transit plan.Captain Cota has subsequently claimed that he found both radar unreliable, but he did not notify the master or the Coast Guard that a required piece of equipment needed to safely navigate the ship had failed. Meanwhile, the captured images of the radar retained on the ship's computer show that the radar was fully operational.The tape recorded conversations from the ship's bridge show that Captain Cota was confused regarding the operation of the electronic chart system upon which he chose to rely including the meaning of two red triangles that marked buoys marking the tower of the bridge that he eventually hit.At no time during the voyage after leaving the berth at 8:07 a.m. and prior to 8:30 a.m. did Captain Cota, or any of the ship's crew, consult the ship's official paper navigational chart or take a single positional fix. Captain Cota did not ask any crew member to take any fixes or verify the ship's position despite the lack of visibility. After the incident, Cota told the Coast Guard he did not request fixes because it is like "driving your car out of a driveway."Prosecutors also filed papers showing that Captain Cota had failed to disclose his medical conditions and prescription drug use on required annual forms submitted to the Coast Guard.The discharge of heavy fuel oil from the Cosco Busan fouled 26 miles of shoreline, killed more than 2,400 birds of about 50 species, temporarily closed a fishery on the bay, and delayed the start of the crab-fishing season. Monetary damages to the bridge, ship and private parties were in the tens of millions of dollars. Clean-up costs have been estimated to exceed $70 million. The birds killed include Brown Pelicans, Marbled Murrelets and Western Grebes. The Brown Pelican is a federally endangered species and the Marbled Murrelet is a federally threatened species and an endangered species under California law.Cota was licensed by the Coast Guard and California as a Bar Pilot, according to the indictment. He was a member of the San Francisco Bar Pilots and had been employed in the San Francisco Bay since 1981. In California, large ocean-going vessels are required to be piloted when entering or leaving port.The grand jury indictment also charges Fleet Management Limited (Hong Kong), a ship management firm, with the same alleged offenses as well as false statements and obstruction of justice charges. Trial in that case is set for Sept. 14, 2009. An indictment is merely an accusation. All defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty at trial beyond a reasonable doubt.The investigation has been conducted by the Coast Guard Investigative Service, the EPA Criminal Investigation Division, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the California Department of Fish and Game, Office of Spill Prevention and Response.The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Stacey Geis and Jonathan Schmidt and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Christopher Tribolet of the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Northern District of California, and Richard A. Udell, Senior Trial Attorney with the Environmental Crimes Section of the U.S. Department of Justice.Under the Crime Victims' Rights Act, crime victims are afforded certain statutory rights including the opportunity to attend all public hearings and provide input to the prosecution. Those adversely impacted by the oil spill are encouraged to visit http://www.usdoj.gov/usao/can/community/Notifications to learn more about the case and the Crime Victims' Rights Act.
Tuesday, July 21, 2009
Monday, July 20, 2009
I spent part of the day discussing our new marine engineering courses with Zenith instructor
Saturday, July 18, 2009
Zenith Maritime helps to sponsor the Wooden Boat Festival - for more info
Friday, July 17, 2009
Thursday, July 16, 2009
Sound Marine Engineering Practices - This is an exciting new course for recreational boaters and marine industry professionals covering all aspects of marine engineering – propulsion, electrical, and auxiliary systems. ABYC, CFR, and NFPA requirements will be discussed. This class will be offered at Skip Anderson's Flagship Maritime Training Center in Fife, Washington beginning September 21, 2009 - please contact Skip at 253.227.2003 for registration information.
Commercial Workboat Engineering Practices – This is a course specifically designed for operators and crew of commercial workboats and fishing vessels. Basic diesel engine theory, operations, and repair are covered along with electrical, refrigeration, air, liquid, control, and hydraulic systems. Emphasis on CFR requirements.
Specialized or Custom Training – Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Monday, June 29, 2009
Thursday, June 25, 2009
Wednesday, June 24, 2009
Tuesday, June 23, 2009
Monday, June 22, 2009
Friday, June 19, 2009
Thursday, June 18, 2009
Wednesday, June 17, 2009
Tuesday, June 16, 2009
Monday, June 15, 2009
Friday, June 12, 2009
Thursday, June 11, 2009
Tuesday, June 9, 2009
Monday, June 8, 2009
Sunday, June 7, 2009
Here is a problem that has come to light and that I feel to be very important information for you to pass along to everyone. During the past several weeks I have run up against this problem on multiple occasions and you all need to be aware of delays that it has and is causing.Make sure that you tell your people that when they make their application with TSA to apply for their TWIC card that they identify their occupation as a MERCHANT MARINER. If this is not done then the information gathered at TSA WILL NOT BE SHARED WITH THE COAST GUARD. I believe this is how it is supposed to work.
The mariner contacts TSA to make an application for their TWIC.
If the mariner does NOT state on the application that their occupation is that of a 'MERCHANT MARINER' the information goes nowhere except within the TSA system. The TWIC card will be issued if all is cleared through TSA.
If the information from TSA is not forwarded to the NMC then the mariners application is suspended awaiting additional information, because they (NMC) have no information from TSA. This is causing major problems for the mariner. Even if the mariner sends in a copy of their TWIC, the NMC won't accept it because TSA has not released the information needed to them.
Because NMC does not have this information, the mariners application has been placed into a "suspended" status until this information has been received, will cause the application process to be delayed 10-12 weeks before it goes to an evaluator. This 10-12 weeks, added to an application that has been at the NMC for 4-8 weeks already, awaiting clearance from the Medical Evaluation Branch and then waiting again for assignment to an evaluator is a devastating set back for mariners wanting to renew or to get an original MMC issued.So, I am strongly suggesting that you please tell your people that if they have recently made application for their TWIC to contact TSA either via telephone or the website and change their Occupation to 'MERCHANT MARINER' (if they have not already done so), and then request that TSA forward the information to the CG as quickly as possible. I believe this should be done for anyone who has had a TWIC issued within the past 4 months as well. This is especially necessary if the mariner has made an application to NMC for an original or renewal within this time frame and has not received their new MMC.Here is hoping this information will not be necessary for you to deal with, but it is better to be pro-active than re-active.Thank you,
-- Norleen L. SchumerMaritimeLicensing.com800-562-9758360-447-8328360-616-2730 (fax)
Saturday, June 6, 2009
Friday, June 5, 2009
Wednesday, June 3, 2009
Tuesday, June 2, 2009
Monday, June 1, 2009
Sunday, May 31, 2009
Friday, May 29, 2009
Thursday, May 28, 2009
Wednesday, May 27, 2009
Tuesday, May 26, 2009
All the best!
Captain Skip Anderson
USCG Licensed Master 1171259
Director, Flagship Maritime Training Center
Training Tomorrow’s Professionals Today
3206 20th Street East
Fife, Washington 98424
Monday, May 25, 2009
INLAND WATERS OF WESTERN WASHINGTON AND THE NORTHERN AND CENTRALPZZ135-251615-
PUGET SOUND AND HOOD CANAL-300 AM PDT MON MAY 25 2009.TODAY...S WIND TO 10 KT IN THE MORNING...BECOMING SW 10 KT EARLY IN THE AFTERNOON...BECOMING NW LATE. WIND WAVES 1 FT OR LESS. AREAS OF FOG EARLY IN THE MORNING.TONIGHTNW WIND 10 TO 15 KTBECOMING SE AFTER MIDNIGHT. WIND WAVES 1 OR 2 FT. TUESW WIND 10 TO 15 KT. WIND WAVES 1 OR 2 FT. CHANCE OF SHOWERS. TUE NIGHTSW WIND 10 TO 15 KTBECOMING NW AFTER MIDNIGHT. WIND WAVES 1 OR 2 FT. WEDN WIND TO 10 KT. WIND WAVES 1 FT OR LESS. THUNW WIND TO 10 KT. WIND WAVES 1 FT OR LESS. FRIS WIND 10 KT BECOMING N. WIND WAVES 1 FT OR LESS.
Sunday, May 24, 2009
Saturday, May 23, 2009
Friday, May 22, 2009
Thursday, May 21, 2009
The difference between the volume of a hull below the designed waterline and the volume of the hull below the lowest opening incapable of being made watertight.
Tuesday, May 19, 2009
We write to enquire from you the availability of your product in large quantity for a contract supply to my government. The Iraqi government is presently embarking on massive development and re-engineering in all the eighteen governorate province making up my country after the devastating war. We are therefore inquiring if you can supply your marine products (patrol boats. fishing boats,.. etc) on a contract basis. We shall be willing to submit your product details to the Joint Contracting Command office here in Baghdad for possible consideration if you deemed fit.
The Chairman of the Joint Contracting Command (the Board that assess and ventilate all contracts) has therefore mandated me to contact you via this medium and demand for your position. The chairman possess the right connections within the political power hierarchy of the present government to influence prompt approval of your application as soon as you indicate your interest.
The Board has also taken into consideration the present unstable security conditions on ground in my country and the differential financial regulations that might create hurdles for you. The appropriate requisite requirements shall be waived in your favour for a hitch-free supply. The Finance Ministry here shall mobilize you fully with 100% of your product cost before commencement of the supply contract. We shall expect a monthly or quarterly supply from your company as the budgetted sum might outstrip your present company production capacity. Please note that CIF Port of Umm Qasr or the Port of Aqaba, Jordan might be consider when shipping.
We shall provide more information in respect of the above inquisition upon your response.
Expecting your prompt response.
Mr. Farooq Hamoudi
Member, Joint Contracting Command, Iraq (JCCI)
Monday, May 18, 2009
“The waters of the United States and its territories are marked to assist navigation by the U.S. Aids to Navigation System. This system employs a simple arrangement of color, shapes, numbers, and light characteristics to mark navigable channels, waterways, and obstructions adjacent to these.
Aids to Navigation can provide a boater with the same type of information that (car) drivers get from street signs, stop signs, road barriers, detours, and traffic lights. These aids may be anything from lighthouses to minor lights, day beacons, range lights, and sound signals, to lighted or unlighted buoys. Each has a purpose and helps in determining location, getting from one place to another or staying out of danger. The goal of the U.S. Aids to Navigation System is to promote safe navigation on the waterway.
The U.S. Aids to Navigation System is intended for use with Nautical Charts. Charts are one of the most important tools used by boaters for planning trips and safely navigating waterways. Charts show the nature and shape of the coast, buoys, and beacons, depth of water, land features, directional information, marine hazards, and other pertinent information.
The primary components of the U.S. Aids to Navigation System are beacons and buoys.
Beacons are aids to navigation structures that are permanently fixed to the earth’s surface. The range from lighthouses to small, single-pile structures and may be located on land or in the water. Lighted beacons are called lights; unlighted beacons are called day-beacons. Beacons exhibit a day-mark to make them readily visible and easily identifiable against background conditions. Generally, the day-mark conveys to the boater, during daylight hours, the same significance as does the aid’s light or reflector at night.
Buoys are floating aids that come in many shapes and sizes. They are moored to the seabed by concrete sinkers with chain or synthetic rope moorings of various lengths connected to the buoy’s body. They are intended to convey information to the boater by their color and shape, by the characteristics of visible or audible signal, or a combination of two or more such features” (USCG US Aids to Navigation System, 1/2001).
Need To Know
The United States utilizes the IALA (International Association of Lighthouse Authorities) Region B system running in a clockwise direction around the United States. This means south along the Atlantic (east) coast, west across the Gulf (coast) of Mexico, north on the Mississippi River (Western Rivers), and north along the Pacific (west) coast. This is known as arbitrary assumption.
A lateral aid’s meaning or significance is denoted by its color and shape.
IALA Region B means keeping the red buoys to starboard when returning from sea. Red and Green navigation aids convey lateral significance. Red Right Returning
Returning from sea…………….and returning to sea
Red aids are marked with even numbers and green aids with odd numbers. Both red and green aids grow in numerical value when viewed returning from sea (i.e., red aids 2, 4, 6, 8…etc., green aids 1, 3, 5, 7…etc.)
“Red Right Returning” (Red “even” numbered marks "Red Headed Nuns Get Even"). Unlighted RED buoys are called “NUNS” - unlighted GREEN buoys are called “CANS”
Day-beacons are planted in the dirt. Red triangle shaped marks equal the 3-R’s or “Red Right Returning”.
Preferred channel aids with both red and green horizontal color bands have lateral significance. They indicate the presence and direction of a primary channel by observing the aid’s top most color band as you would with either an all red or all green aid. The lower color band indicates the presence of a secondary channel.
Red or green aids are often fitted with a quick flashing light to indicate a bend or turn in a channel or fairway.
Yellow aids and buoys indicate a special situation and never convey lateral significance. They (yellow aids) indicate the presence of a VTS, the ICW, fish traps, etc. Yellow marks indicate a special situation
Red and White aids are called safe water buoys and have no lateral significance. These sometimes indicate the start-end of something, such as a buoyed channel and can be passed on either side. Sea buoys - Always Morse code (A)
Red and Black buoys indicate an isolated danger immediately below or adjacent to the aid and have no lateral significance. Always approach with due caution and attention. Black Balls of Death
Diamond shaped, checkered aids convey no lateral significance they convey information regarding location.
White aids with an orange boarder with diamond, square, or circle in shapes, have no lateral significance. These convey important information such as shallow water, reduced speed zones, or other regulatory information.
Range markers are used in pairs to indicate the center or safe water of a fairway or channel when vertically aligned.
Light Color - Red, green, yellow, and or white. If the light color is not designated on the chart, the color is white. See Light List.
Light Phase Characteristics – Light sequences or pattern of light shown within one complete cycle of the light. See Light List.
Light Period – The length of time required for the light to progress through one complete cycle of changes. See Light List.
Buoys - Buoys can be lighted or unlighted and are attached to a sinker which keeps it in its charted or reported position. A buoy’s color and shape are significant. Charts will show a buoy with its color, shape and light characteristic. Use the Notice to Mariners to update charts on a regular basis….a chart correction card shows the correction dates per chart.
Lighthouses - These are major structures with distinctive color and light schemes (or sequences). Many lighthouses also have sound signals - very useful in thick fog. You will find the necessary information (sound, light color and characteristic, name, height and nominal range - the distance at which the light is well visible in clear weather. It is very required to have the Coast Guard Light List in your possession - it contains a lot of useful information.
Daybeacons - These are structures similar to beacons, except they are unlighted and are usually single-pile.
Minor Lights and Beacons - These are much smaller than lighthouses, but also give light signals. They are single- or multi-pile structures, although sometimes can be also skeleton or masonry towers. They have dayboards which are plywood boards with significant shapes and colors, numbers or letters, and a reflective tape around them.
Saturday, May 16, 2009
Friday, May 15, 2009
Thursday, May 14, 2009
Wednesday, May 13, 2009
Tuesday, May 12, 2009
So there's a physical relocation portion, there's a data center/ IT backbone portion, there's a staffing portion where we load resources and staff from the RECs in. Then there's the creation of new staff functions, one of which is the medical competency folks who are capable of screening these records (medical exams) in one central location. We've phased the movement of the records from the RECs to the central point in a responsible manner I think, where we tried to move as fast as we could, while being mindful of the impact on our stakeholders in the field. Where is the Coast Guard with TWIC implementation? As you know, we're heading toward an April deadline to have everybody in compliance. We started back before the end of the calendar year. We do find that there are unique issues related to each port. One of my predecessors once said, "if you've seen one port, you've seen one port." So we get to places like Alaska or Hawaii where there are issues with accessibility because people are on islands or at great distances, and we've dealt with those.
There have been some issues with the contractor that was retained with TSA regarding the acquisition of the data and the production of the cards, but in general, I think it's gone very smoothly. Our next challenge of course, is to issue the second regulation regarding the card readers and figure out where we want to go with the biometrics that are captured in relation to our merchant mariner credentialing, so it only has to be done once. What kind of feedback are you getting from the field?Generally, good feedback. It's usually a supply and demand issue where the enrollment centers have been established by the contract. Are they in the right place and can they handle the throughput? We've worked with TSA and the contractor to adjust that, and in some cases, there were more resources needed at one place than another. In other cases it was to our advantage to put a mobile enrollment center on the road and take it to large populations like a maritime school, for example, where you know you have a significant group that can be dealt with in one place.Can you talk about the Centers of Expertise (COEs)?Sure. I'm going back 10 or 15 years ago, when we trained our marine inspectors by sending them to a training port. We would send them to a large port like New York with the knowledge that in a very large port, they would get a great cross section of the different types of inspections that they would have to do. Changes over the years caused us to move away from training ports. Some ports now specialize in certain types of maritime activities that others do not. For example, Houston and Galveston have a high concentration of petroleum and chemical type traffic and LA/Long Beach has a very high amount of containership traffic. So by sending someone to a port to train them in their first tour, they're not necessarily going to get what they need to be an effective inspector.
We decided to break the industry into segments and then go where they're actually conducting those operations in the private sector and co-locate out training nodes so when our inspectors come into that particular area they'd be trained on the specific type of platform. We recently stood up the COE related to inland towing, the brown water fleet, in Paducah, Ky., near the convergence of the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers, where there are a lot of barges. We put the COE right where the businesses are, so if you're going to get into that line of work we're going to send you there to train no matter where you're going to be dealing with towing operations in the country. In a similar manner, for cruise ships it will be Miami, because that is the largest cruise ship port in the United States. For the offshore oil and gas industry it will be down on the Louisiana coast. Morgan City or Houlma are the likely candidates. In Duluth, we will probably set up the Lake Carrier COE because those are different types of vessels up there. There's a lot of steam plants that aren't operated anyplace else. The final COE, probably somewhere on the Gulf coast as well, will be for Liquefied Natural Gas.What were your priorities when you started your tour as Commandant and what progress has been made?The overwhelming priority when I became Commandant was to reposition the Coast Guard in the 21st Century to be a more flexible and agile organization. We're accomplishing that by looking at our command and control structure and our mission control structure. We're also looking at operations where we haven't been as focused on our customers as we need to be. Marine Inspection is a good example of that. We're looking to stand up two organizations inside the Coast Guard, one is a mission execution organization and the other is a mission support organization that will be headed by two deputy Commandants.
Probably the biggest change in the Coast Guard is taking the entire logistics and maintenance system to a standardized business practice, what we call bi-level maintenance. We're pretty much on track. We've most recently stood up logistic centers to focus on our various platforms. The Surface Forces Logistics Center is in Baltimore. The Shore Infrastructure Logistics Center is down in the Tidewater area. The Command and Control Computers, Intelligence and IT (C4IT) Center of Excellence is going to be in Alexandria, Virginia. We already have an Aviation Center of Excellence in Elizabeth City, North Carolina. Moving ahead, the two largest challenges that remain are working with the Congress to establish the two senior leadership billets [Deputy Commandants] and, what I probably won't see done on my watch, the transformation of our financial management system. That's somewhat linked with the new financial management system that's coming on-line with the Department [Homeland Security] and that's likely to extend past my tenure.
Sunday, May 10, 2009
According to available builder’s data the steel hull is welded steel-alloy plating on 5/32" X 1" X 1" – 18" OC frames with the following plate scantlings (nominal thickness):
Keel Shoe – 25/32" (0.78")
Keel Plate – 13/64" (0.203")
Hull Plate – 5/32" (0.197") or 5.0mm
Deck Plate – 9/64" (0.140")
The vessel was carefully lifted out of the water and blocked for inspection. The hull was remarkably clean and unfouled. The exterior of the hull was not pressure washed prior to visual and ultrasonic gauging. The topsides are substantially filled and faired which precluded a visual and mechanical examination. Similarly, weather decks are such that precluded examination as well. Therefore – the vessel was not belt gauged – only the underbody and keel was subject to steel gauging.
No corrosion or damage was observed on the topsides, weather decks and or superstructure. Dissimilar metal corrosion at the mast deck step was observed to be slight, properly controlled and monitored by ownership. No visual evidence of grounding or other damage was observed above or below the waterline. The hull underbody and keel plating is coated with anti-fouling paint generally smooth and uniform in thickness with only minor flaking in localized areas. The keel is rather full – with integral lead ballast down low. Tankage for liquid stores is incorporated into the keel. The water tank was recently renewed as evidenced a replaced (welded) section of plating on the portside. The bronze alloy propeller is well protected in its aperture. The rudder is of steel construction with negligible play in the hinges.
Upon visual examination – the surface of the hull and keel showed no rust blooms, pitting, corrosion, fatigue, structural failure, and or wastage and was fair to the eye with no hard spots or proud plates. Minor inward hull plating buckling was observed below the water line - portside to at the lower underbody and keel at the frame bays. Minor buckling was also observed sporadically starboard side to. Welded plate seams were observed to be in serviceable condition with no visual cracks - fractures or corrosion. Welded in place through-hull penetrations were thoroughly examined – again with no visual evidence of wastage or fatigue. Sacrificial zinc anodes are properly attached to the steel hull plating and to the propeller tail-shaft. The keel shoe was found to be smooth and unabraded. The leading edge of the keel and stem showed no evidence of damage or abrasion.
The steel hull plating was systematically ultrasonically gauged to provide a quantitative basis for evaluating a questionable local and overall condition. In preparation – a TM-8811 portable 5mhz ultrasonic gauging instrument was carefully calibrated just prior to inspection with a known 5mm or 0.197" steel plate (medical grade glycerin was used as an interface agent for all readings).
The underbody of each hull side was prepared for mapping by identifying and referencing a (welded) deck cleat (on each beam) forward of amidships (eventually known as station number 7). An accurately marked fiberglass measuring tape was carefully positioned (slightly down from the bottom of the black boot stripe) longitudinally along each hull side on the unfilled and faired water line section of the hull. The tape was extended forward to near the cut-water aspect of the stem (tape set at the ‘zero’ foot mark) and then aft to the stern (ending at approximately the ‘32’ foot mark). On both beams, the tape’s approximate ten (10) foot mark was visually observed to be vertically aligned with the above mentioned deck cleat and identified as station number 7. Reference stations 1 through 16 were set along the tape at every twenty-four (24) inches fore and aft. From this tape-line - a series of parallel reference lines running down to the so-called garboard seam at the upper most portion of the keel plate were established on approximately twelve (12) inch centers.
All steel plate measurements were taken with a eight (8) millimeter probe on clean, smooth steel plate hull surfaces at the intersection of the above described horizontal and vertical reference lines (12" X 24"). In the event a reading coincided with an interior transverse framing member – the probe was slightly repositioned. All readings were hand recorded then compared with the original scantlings. If wastage - corrosion in the steel plate surface was visually observed outside the pre-determined ultrasonic steel gauging points - it would be considered a justifiable basis for requiring gauging in that affected area. The criteria for such would be deep pitting, holes, fractures, excessively thin edges on structural shapes, bands and or belts of corrosion across hull and keel plating).
Reference to NVIC 8-68 nomograph Table 2-1 "Percentage of Wastage" was made to set the parameters to determine the scantling’s maximum wastage limits and facilitate evaluation of the results based on a recommended standard of no more than 25% wastage of original thickness. The limits of wastage were determined to be as follows:
Hull plating – approximately 0.148"
Keel plating – approximately 0.152"
Saturday, May 9, 2009
Thursday, May 7, 2009
Ten (10) hull planking fasteners (#14 X 2" marine-grade bronze wood screws) were opened up at various locations at the vessel’s underbody (garboard, broad planks, at the waterline, chine, butts, transom, and hood ends) and examined and found to be generally serviceable condition. The bronze wood screw fasteners at the forward garboard and broads showed evidence of moderate (visible) alloy breakdown while the fasteners amidships and aft were generally visibly wasted from stray-current corrosion. Ownership indicated that the vessel’s wiring was found to be in a state of disrepair when he acquired the vessel and spent much time tidying-up electrical wiring in the bilge. These fastenings were deemed unserviceable were replaced with new silicon-bronze wood screws provided by ownership. New fasteners hardened-up when installed. Two (2) bronze wood screw fasteners (forward and below the water line on the starboard bow) suffered from alloy breakdown. One fastener on the starboard garboard plank near amidships spun-out. Given the total number of hull fasteners (plank, butt, and garboard) – based on this inspection – that there are still an adequate number of serviceable fasteners for a reasonable period of time. All open fastenings were sealed with glued mahogany bungs or fill with seam compound.
More recently, ocean exploitation and environmental assessment have become the important national projects to be promoted, and these have created afresh a necessity for consolidation and expansion of holdings of basic scientific data concerning the ocean and their more effective utilization by analyses. Meanwhile, the needs for hydrographic surveys and oceanographic observations are increasing year after year, and there is a keen demand for raising the technical levels of private firms which are engaging in these operations.
In the circumstances, it has become fully realized that the hydrographic services by the government alone can no longer cope sufficiently with these various necessities. Indeed, it is an urgent task to make practical applications of basic data to the increasing demand and to take a timely step as the occasion demands for hydrographic services. In view of this situation, the Japan Hydrographic Association was founded in March 1971.
Monday, May 4, 2009
Hi John – Saw your posting about Dreamboats and wanted to comment. (Alas there is no way to comment unless you have a blog somewhere.) Anyway, here’s what I was going to say:
The Classic Yacht Association has a great article on their website about Lake Union Dreamboats, at http://classicyacht.org/ludreamboat
Note: The Lake Union Dreamboats were designed by Otis Cutting, not Ted Geary. Not sure how that got started, but you see it written sometimes that they were Geary designed. He did design a couple of similar boats, but not the Lake Union Dreamboats or Blanchard Stock Cruisers.
Our family boat when I was growing up was a Lake Union Dreamboat (Orba – she’s still going strong today. . .), and I can attest that they are a great all-around boats for the Pacific Northwest – simple, comfortable and robust.
Oh a P.S.: Although the boat you have pictured may have been built by Lake Union, it is not a “Dreamboat”. Some owners of Lake Union built boats have come to think of anything built there as a “Lake Union Dreamboat” – a romantic sounding name for sure. But the name was specifically applied to their entry into the Stock Cruiser market, and only applied to the house aft, raised bow style. There are quite a few examples around here: Winifred, Orba, Turning Point, Zella C, Island Runner, Vagabond, Marian C, etc. Again, check out the CYA page for more details.. .