China Says it Confronted U.S. Warship Near Contested Islands
China identified and warned a U.S. navy destroyer near South China Sea islands on Wednesday, according to a posting on People’s Liberation Army’s southern command’s WeChat account. China said it firmly oppose U.S.’s “so-called navigation and overflight freedom”, adding that it severely damaged China’s sovereignty and security, and jeopardized peace and security in South Sea area; China said its armed forces will take all necessary measures to guard the country. The USS Wayne E. Meyer, a Arleigh Burke-class destroyer, sailed within 12 nautical miles of Fiery Cross and Mischief Reefs “in order to challenge excessive maritime claims and preserve access to the waterways as governed by international law,” the U.S. 7th Fleet said in a statement to several media organizations, adding the U.S. will continue to “fly, sail and operate wherever international law allows,“ including in the South China Sea.
Insight: Practical Effects from the Supreme Court’s Decision Limiting Punitive Damages for Sailors
The U.S. Supreme Court’s recent decision that sailors injured aboard unseaworthy ships can’t seek punitive damages from shipowners resolved a federal appeals court split. The U.S. Supreme Court’s June 24 opinion in Dutra Group v. Batterton (2019), resolved a split among federal appellate courts by concluding that punitive damages are not available in a general maritime law unseaworthiness action brought by a Jones Act seaman. Read more HERE.
DOT Awards $32.8 Million in Passenger Ferry Grants
Earlier this month, the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Transit Administration (FTA) announced approximately $32.8 million in project selections to improve the safety and reliability of passenger ferries and enhance mobility for ferry users across the U.S. A total of nine projects in nine states will receive funding from FTA’s Passenger Ferry Grant Program. FTA Passenger Ferry Grant Program funds projects to purchase, replace or rehabilitate passenger ferries, terminals and related infrastructure and equipment.
Scrubber Retrofitting Driving Spike in the Charter Market
Ocean carriers are biting the bullet and agreeing charters for significantly higher daily rates as markets tighten ahead of IMO 2020. The IMO’s maximum 0.5% sulfur content regulation for maritime fuel becomes law in less than 120 days and is widely seen as a ‘game-changer’ for the shipping industry. Dry docks are said to be full of vessels requiring the fitting of scrubbers, and reports are emerging of the installation process taking some two weeks or more over estimates of 25-30 days, creating further uncertainty for fleet operators.
Gulf Island Constructing Passenger/Vehicle Ferry for Texas
Gulf Island Fabrication Inc. is building a new 495-passenger, 70-vehicle, double-ended ferry for the Texas Department of Transportation. The vessel will be built at their Jennings, Louisiana, facility, with delivery scheduled for late 2021.
Crowley Building New ATB for Alaska
Crowley Fuels has signed construction contracts to build a 55,000-bbl., articulated tug-barge (ATB) that is specifically designed to serve the Western Alaska market with delivery of clean fuel products. Master Boat Builders will build the tug, and Gunderson Marine LLC will construct the 350′, 55,000-bbl. tank barge. Construction on the barge will begin in the first quarter of calendar 2020, and delivery of the ATB is expected by January 2021.
American Shipping Company says Jones Act tanker market up
TradeWinds – Matt Coyne – 26 August 2019
Jones Act tanker rates are surging, according to American Shipping Company. The Oslo-traded US-flag shipowner said time charter fixtures were hitting $60,000 per day in its second quarter earnings report Monday. “It is encouraging to see that the overall market dynamic is playing out as expected with… new time charter contracts being secured at higher levels compared to last fall,” said chief executive Pal Lothe Magnussen. “We expect this market development to continue going forward, resulting in gradually improving market conditions.”
SOV specialist plans foray into US offshore wind market
Rivera – David Foxwell – 27 August 2019
The last 18 months have seen vessel owners target the fast-growing US offshore wind market. Among the latest is the Danish company that pioneered the concept of service operation vessels (SOVs). Speaking exclusively to OWJ, Esvagt deputy chief executive Kristian Ole Jakobsen says the US market was the logical next step for the company, which is already a leader in the market in the North Sea and Baltic. “The North American offshore wind industry is emerging and Esvagt sees significant potential in bringing its competence and track record to the US market,” Mr. Jakobsen says. “Most global companies in the offshore wind industry are looking at the US,” says Mr. Jakobsen. “We have taken a decision to enter the market on the east coast and are looking for a partner.”
Dutra Launches New Hydraulic Dump Scow ES15
Dredging Today – 27 August 2019
Dutra Group has launched its new 6,000cy Hydraulic Dump Scow built in Corn Island Shipyard, Grandview, Indiana. The launching ceremony took place on August 20, 2019. Following the launching, christening and commissioning of the Dump Scow ES15, the vessel will finish sea trials and additional testing this week.