Constantza Won’t Have Paris For 3 Months

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Mar 082011

Contantza - 94 deficiencies in one year

Comoros-flagged general cargo ship Constanza has been banned from Paris MOU ports for at lest three months due to multiple detentions. The 1970-built 1939 gross tonnes vessel is owned by Trans Ocean Navigation, based in Turkey.

In 2010 the vessel was detained three times in the Bulgaria port of Varna for a total of 11 days. Throughout the year 94 deficiencies were noted.


Sri Lanka Gets The Nod, Georgia Gets The Bullet

 maritime safety news  Comments Off on Sri Lanka Gets The Nod, Georgia Gets The Bullet
Dec 072010

...But seafarers unwanted

Sri Lanka dodged the bullet but in the first of what may be several such cases to come, the European Commission has withdrawn recognition of STCW certificates issued by Georgia. The entire Georgian Maritime Administration has been fired and criminal prosecutions are being considered.

Says the country’s President, Mikheil Saakashvili: “… Now you see what type of results could be brought by someone’s incompetence, laziness, corruptness and crime”.

Based on the inspections held in 2006 the European Commission decided to determinate recognition of the country’s STCW certificates enabling EU member states to hire Georgian seafarers since 2001.

The unprecedented move has led Georgian Minister of Economy and Sustainable Development Vera Kobalia to fire the heads of the United Transportation Administration and appoint Captain Mamuka Akhaladze as head of the Maritime Administration.

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Filipino, Syrian Officers Charged in Bulgaria

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Dec 062010

Alessandro DP

Officers of two ships, a Syrian captain and a Filipino chief officer have been charged in Bulgaria following a collision in the Black Sea this week. Their documents have been seized, reports the Sofia News Agency Novinite.

The Syrian captain of the Karam I cargo ship and the Philippine chief officer of a Dutch tanker, the Alessandro DP, were charged with breaching naval transportation rules and causing the death of one or more people, the Burgas regional prosecutor’s office announced.

The two ships collided Monday, at about 5:40 pm local time 20 km southeast of cape Emine. The Karim 1 cargo ship, carrying scrap, and sailing under the Sierra Leone flag sank immediately after the collision. Five of its 10 sailors – an Egyptian and four Syrians – were rescued right after the clash, while another five were still missing after the search for survivors was called off on Friday.

There is minor damage to the Alessandro DP.

The Regional Prosecutor’s Office in the Black Sea city of Burgas is probing three possible causes for the clash – a technical failure on one of the ships, human error, or bad weather, with the most probable being human error.

Even Dummies Have Their Place In Pirate Alley

 piracy, pirates  Comments Off on Even Dummies Have Their Place In Pirate Alley
Nov 032010

A Dummy on watch

Hristo Papukchiev, former chief investigator for Bulgaria who resigned in the face of political interference and other shennagigans among those in charge of ensuring the safety of the country’s ships and seafarers has long been back at sea. On one recent voyage he sent MAC these photographs of his anti-piracy efforts, held over until he, his crew and his vessel were in a place of safety.

Says Hristo: “Kindly please note my crew attempts to keep the vessel well protected away from the enemies hands when passing strait of Malacca .Probably this was just a simulation for hard time preparation to protect and secure the Federica Prima domain”.

A handful of dummies and wooden AK47s backed up by an alert and well-trained crew, of which Captain Papukchiev is very proud.

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Shipowners’ Incompetence Leads To UK Detentions

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May 292010

image Port State Control detentions are a microcosm of shipowner incompetence, venality and disregard for human life. The four-ship shocker in the latest Maritime & Coastguard Agency announcement of ships under detention in UK ports during April 2010 after failing Port State Control inspection highlights owners who shouldn’t be allowed a bathtubs, let alone a ship.

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Bulgarian Volunteers Slam SAR Incompetence

 Accident, news  Comments Off on Bulgarian Volunteers Slam SAR Incompetence
Feb 092010

BULSAR: Critical of SAR management

Bulgarian search and rescue efforts following the sinking of MV Tolstoy have been forcefully criticised by a volunteer SAR service in a paper based on official records and reports but not yet, as far as we know, published in the West. BULSAR alleges that two key personnel were not competent, a third critical position had yet to be filled, and that many survivors were doomed by inadequate SAR equipment and poor search methodologies.

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Jul 222009
Captain Hristo Papukchiev0001
Captain Hristo Papukchiev

Just one day after being tasked to lead a re-opening of the investigation into the January 2008 sinking of the general cargo ship Vanessa Captain Hristo Papukchiev resigned as chairman of the Commission of Investigation. It was a frustrating end to a mission to enhance safety for seafarers on Bulgarian ships and in Bulgarian waters.

Papukchiev’s story raises issues regarding the country’s commitment to maritime safety, safety investigation, and search and rescue. The issues are not unique to Bulgaria,they are common in those countries where shipping interests wield tremendous political power, power enough to make or break presidents. What makes his story unique is that such tales are usually kept behind well-closed doors but Papukchiev has gone public.

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