The APL England, a 5,780 TEU capacity containership which lost around 40 containers off the coast of New South Wales in Australia has been detained in Brisbane by the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) since the 26th May..
After AMSA inspectors were satisfied that the ship was fit to sail, the empty APL England was released on 19th of June and allowed to sail from Australia to undertake repairs in China..
If getting seafarers off these ships causes chaos in supply chains, if ports back up from Singapore to San Francisco, and if this causes ship insurance providers to pull their coverage and global trade to grind to a halt; then that is on the heads of politicians, not the world’s seafarers.
This is the message from Steve Cotton General Secretary of ITF reiterating that Seafarers have done their part in this COVID-19 pandemic, and plenty more. Enough is enough, it is time to go home now.
Haven, Inc., the California-based Software as a Service company that produces the premier Transportation Management System for international shippers, was selected among hundreds of candidates as one of the World Economic Forum’s “Technology Pioneers”.
The World Economic Forum’s Technology Pioneers are early to growth-stage companies from around the world that are involved in the design, development and deployment of new technologies and innovations, and are poised to have a significant impact on business and society. Technology Pioneers community is an integral part of the larger Global Innovators community of start-ups at the World Economic Forum.
Fresh from their recent positive results in Q1 2020, ZIM has launched a new service in record time to cater to the growing e-Commerce market demand..
The New service is a speedy, dedicated service from South China to Los Angeles US West Coast which will commence on the 22nd of June 2020..
The service aptly named the Speedy ZIM eCommerce Xpress (ZEX), is a custom made service for time-sensitive cargo with a transit time of only 12 days from Yantian and DaChan Bay in South China to Los Angeles in the US West Coast making it the fastest service in the market..
“There is an urgent need for inter-governmental organisations, governments and industry stakeholders concerned with maritime trade and logistics to come together and accelerate the pace of digitalisation“..
This is the message from several industry bodies representing a range of shipping, port, cargo handling and ship operating organisations..
“The restrictions for crew change due to COVID-19 is unsustainable for the safety and wellbeing of over 150,000 seafarers who will require international flights to be changed over to and from the ships they work on from the middle of June 2020. These seafarers are having to extend their service onboard ships after many months at sea, unable to be replaced or repatriated after long tours of duty.”
This is the message from The Secretary-General of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), the Director-General of the International Labour Organization (ILO) and the Secretary-General of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) who issued a joint statement to enlist the support of Governments for the facilitation of crew changes in ports and airports in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic.
2019 was quite the year for maritime disasters with ships on fire, containers falling off ships etc.. 2020 seems to be hitting the industry in other ways which could also be considered a kind of maritime disaster..
But in what may be the first reported case of containers falling off ships in 2020, the APL England a 5,780 TEU capacity containership lost around 40 containers off the coast of New South Wales in Australia.. It has also been reported that around 74 containers are lying in a collapsed state within the stacks on board the ship..
Such incidents bring to the fore the question whether the ship register or ship registry is liable for containers falling off a ship and who is really responsible..
Ballast Water Treaty is an important international treaty which helps prevent the spread of potentially invasive aquatic species by ships.. This treaty got a major boost following China’s extension of the treaty to the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region.
Ships flagged to Hong Kong, China – the fourth largest flag Administration in the world by shipping tonnage – will now be required to apply the requirements of the Ballast Water Management Convention (BWM).. This mean that this treaty now covers more than 90% of shipping worldwide..
The COVID-19 pandemic has put seafarers around the world in precarious situations. Travel restrictions mean some cannot leave their ships, be repatriated home, or even get urgent medical assistance. Other seafarers have seen their contracts unilaterally terminated or have been quarantined on board ships for more than 14 days, without getting paid.
A large number of seafarers, as well as their spouses and family members, have reached out to IMO to share their concerns about a variety of difficult situations caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
IMO has established an internal team to help resolve individual cases, often working alongside other organizations like the International Labour Organization (ILO), the International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF) and the International Chamber of Shipping (ICS).
We have read many articles, extolling the virtues of Seafarers who are considered the backbone of the shipping industry and how they are important to the industry etc etc.
However, due to the ongoing COVID-19 restrictions, these Seafarers are facing significant challenges with extended service on board, unable to go ashore for a bit of fresh air after many months at sea, unable to be relieved of their duties and go home to be with their loved ones etc.
This is despite international maritime compliance regulations which require Seafarers to be changed on a regular basis from ships they work in to ensure safety, crew health, welfare, and the prevention of fatigue.
There have been calls from many quarters for appropriate action to be taken to address these issues faced by Seafarers.