Ship of Shame: Craig Trans

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Jul 102014

craigtransParis MOU’s Caught in the Net is possibly the nearest thing to a maritime Stephen King story, tales of shipowners who should not be entrusted with  a secondhand rubber duck let alone with responsibility for a ship and the lives of its crew. Such a one is Mr. Gerard Antoine of Vesta Shipping Lines which owned the Bolivian-flagged tug Craig Trans which arrived at Halifax, Nova Scotia on 18 December 2012, with engine and generator problems, during a voyage from the Panama Canal to Montreal, Canada.

When Craig Trans arrived, the pilot noticed that the port anchor was missing. As the master wanted to anchor in Halifax harbour, the pilot asked how much chain was on the Starboard anchor. The Master told him that there was 40 metres of chain, which the pilot believed was not enough for the depth in the anchorage, as the weather forecast was for 50 Knots wind that night. The pilot arranged for a berth at Pier 26.

The crew of Craig Trans then went to the Mission to Seafarers and asked for food, as they had not eaten for three days. The Mission gave them food.
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Ships Of Shame: The “Uninhabitable” Gorgonilla

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Jul 122010

imageWhen a cold, tired, exhausted crew plead for its ship to be inspected then you can be shore it’s an unhappy ship. In the case of the Panama-registered tanker Gorgonilla. commercially operated by Uni-Chartering,  it was more than unhappy, it was uninhabitable says the ParisMOU’s Caught in the Net campaign.

On 27 January 2010 the ship’s main engine failed some three miles off Europa Point, Gibraltar. she spent several hours not under control until the engine were restarted.

A dozen days later, she’s on passage from Gibraltar to Kalunborg by way of the Kiel Canal. The outside temperature was –9 degrees Celsius. Inside the accommodation the temperature falls to 0 degrees Celsius because the ship has no heating. The sanitary water has already frozen in the pipes.

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Ships Of Shame – MV Aspet – No Way Top Treat A Lifeboat

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Jan 132010

image Last summer the almost 30-year old, Georgian-registered MV Aspet limped into the French port of St. Nazaire with flooding in her hold. The shipowner couldn’t be bothered to pay for repairs, which isn’t surprising because the crew hadn’t been paid for months. The ship remains in drydock in detention.

Norton Maritime Corporation owns Aspet, the ship manager is BAF Denizcilik Ve Ticaret Ltd, who share offices in Istanbul. No strangers to detention: In mid-2009 the vessel spent 115 days in detention at Hull following 57 deficiences,  in the UK, just before being detained in St. Nazaire,  four days in Rostov in 2008 for 13 deficiencies and, in 2007, 132 days detention for  23 deficiencies in Thessalonika.

image It’s just as well the ship made it into St. Nazaire because had she been lost at sea it’s doubtful that her crew would have survived the lifeboats, as these photographs, courtesy of the Apostolship Of The Sea and sent to us by Yann Chauty of Ceps-Survie, the French non-profit maritime training association, who saw conditions on the vessel himself.

Says Yann: “I was very surprised by the portside lifeboat” as well he might have been. Continue reading »

Ships Of Shame X 10

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Dec 272009

imageNine new detentions in November, and one carried over from October, show just how little certain shipowners, some flag states, and others who should know better, care about the lives of the seafarers on their vessels and even the vessels themselves. These detentions were not matters of minor paperwork not being in order, they were matters that should not have happened and which, if not rectified, put every seafarer on them at risk.

Firefighting equipment unusable and seafarers not adequately trained, equipment for confined space entry unusable and seafarers not adequately trained, the sorry, shameful list goes on.

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SOS – Ships Of Shame – Christine O

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Nov 172009

This months Ship Of Shame comes from Silvertown in the UK where port state inspectors detained the Antigua and Barbuda-flagged bulker Christine O for 13 days to fix 41 deficiencies. That may not be a record but nothing to be proud of as the following photographs, courtesy of the UK’s Maritime & Coastguard Agency demonstrate. Continue reading »

SOS – Ships Of Shame: What the Zeus?

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Oct 162009

imageThis ship of shame, the Panama-flagged bulker Zeus 1, owned by Falcon Shipping Inc, can hardly be described as a rust bucket, her keel was laid as recently as 2007, but she was, and perhaps still is, a death trap for the seafarers working on her.

She was detained for 15 days by Maritime New Zealand due to a long list of frightening shortfalls that would have doomed those aboard her in an emergency.

What sort of emergency? With significant contamination in the galley exhaust trunking creating a risk of fire, perhaps assisted by a busted fuel oil quick closing valve, let’s look at that first. The official record says ‘Demonstrated fire drills not to the required standard”. Hardly surprising since manufacturer’s stickers were still on the facemasks, suggesting that fire drills were few and far between.

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