International Vessel Casualties & Pirates Database For Year 2000

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Vessel Loss Dispatches 2000

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Year 2000 -- The Cargo Letter

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Year 2000 Vessel Cassualties & Pirate Attacks

December 2000

November 2000

October 2000

September 2000

August 2000

July 2000

June 2000

May 2000

April 2000

March 2000

February 2000

January 2000

May God Bless Those At Sea Tonight. God's Speed & Following Seas!

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Vessel Loss Dispatches For January 2000

M/V Straits Peace, the 1st Taiwan vessel permitted to sail directly to rival China in more than 50 years was forced to turn back on New Years Day (Dec. 31 Los Angeles time), beset by heavy seas & mainland red tape. The vessel ferrying more than 50 tourism industry businesspeople from the Taiwan-held frontier island of Quemoy to the southeastern Chinese city of Xiamen turned back after sailing for about 15 minutes, passengers said. "The waves are too big, we are on our way back. The boat is rocking stronger and stronger," said one of the passengers on the 20-ton vessel. Some of the passengers are reporters & the mainland will not agree to let them land," the passenger added. Some people on the vessel have been in contact with mainland officials via mobile phones. The vessel would have been the 1st to take advantage of the Taiwan cabinet's decision last month to permit direct travel between the heavily fortified frontier islands of Quemoy & Matsu. (Dec. 31 2000)

IMB PIRATE Alert ___

The Int'l Maritime Bureau announced that ships plying the Straits of Malacca have been alerted to be vigilant following an upsurge in piracy. IMB's Piracy Reporting Center in Kuala Lumpur said pirate attacks have been recorded in the Malacca Straits between the co-ordinates 01 to 02N-101 to 103E. The most risky area is within 25nm radius surrounding 02N-102E, where pirates are active. The center said ships calling at Davao in the Philippines have also reported men firing rocket-propelled grenades at ships from banca (small canoe with outriggers). In the past 4 weeks, four ships have been attacked this way. Attacks against ships have been reported at Chittagong, Mongla and Chennai while they were at anchor. Ships calling at the Indonesian ports of Belawan, Dumai, Jakarta, Merak, Samarinda and Tanjong Priok have reported numerous pirate attacks whilst at berth & at anchor. The center said persons in small fast boats have been trying to board several ships off Bab Al Mandeb in the southern tip of the Red Sea, around 13N-43E. Masters said small boats wait at the northern end of traffic lane where ships slow down to make a turn. Somalian waters also continue to be a risk-prone area for hijackings. Ships should keep at least 50 miles and if possible 100 miles from the Somali coast. The center has advised that the use of radio communications including VHF transmissions in these waters should be kept to a minimum.(Dec. 31 2000)
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All 27 crew members of the 2,731-ton Chinese timber carrier M/V Jia Ding Guan were resued after it listed & shipped water in rough seas about 107 miles (178 km) S. of Hong Kong. The Chinese crew members abandoned ship in a lifeboat & were picked up by the Liberian-registered container ship M/V Dolphin Hope on Dec. 28 afternoon. There is no information about the fate of the Jia Ding Guan (Fri. Dec. 29 2000)

The 4 crew of the Greenock-based tug, Flying Phantom have been rescued by coastguard teams after it was in collision with an Egyptian cargo vessel M/V Abu Egila carrying 1,000 tons of fertilizer. The accident happened on the River Clyde near Clydebank, Dunbartonshire. The cargo vessel is now moored at the King George V dock in Glasgow. Tug is aground further down the river & is due to be moved, when salvage teams will attempt to repair the damage. (Fri. Dec. 29 2000)

The Bangladesh ferry M/V Rajhangshi with nearly 400 passengers sank early Dec. 29 after colliding with another vessel in a dense fog in southeastern Bangladesh. At least 80 people killed & 170 missing. Police recovered the dead from the Meghna River in Chandpur district, about 40 miles southeast of Dhaka, but fear many more bodies were trapped inside. A salvage ship located the sunken ferry about 30 feet below the water this evening. The double-decker ferry sank late at night while most passengers were sleeping. (Fri. Dec. 29 2000)

The 594-foot M/V Dynamic, with potash (potassium carbonate) & the 331-foot M/V Ocean Venus, with grain, collided at Bolivar Peninsula in Galveston County, but the 42 people aboard both boats are OK. The Venus is taking water, & the U.S. Coast Guard is on the scene trying to determine what happened & get the situation under control. (Fri. Dec. 29 2000)

Chinese M/V JIA DING GUAN (4,999 gt, built 1985) reported taking water & listing heavily in lat 20 53N, long 114 19E, on Dec 28. Crew of 27 abandoned ship & were rescued by container vessel M/V Dolphin Hope. Jia Ding Guan still adrift. (Fri. Dec. 29 2000)

Seventeen people were injured Dec. 27 when the private charter ferry carrying 44 people M/V Pool Scene hired for a Christmas cruise collided in thick fog on the estuary of the Clyde with the 2,500-ton container vessel M/V Nordsee. A lifeboat & an RAF rescue helicopter were alerted shortly after 10.30 am. The ships, which were travelling in opposite directions, left the bow of the 45ft passenger boat badly damaged. It ran alongside the starboard side of the Nordsee. Both vessels managed return to the port of Greenock, 12 miles from Glasgow, where the injured passengers &endash; suffering shock, cuts & bruises &endash; were met by ambulances. (Wed. Dec. 27 2000)

French sailor Alain Pastor (29), a teacher, was rescued off the south Irish coast Dec. 26 after his 11-meter yacht S/V Saturnin collided with Norwegian tanker M/T Sunstamn. Pastor was sailing solo from Brest to Kinsale, Co. Cork, when the incident happened 5 miles south-east of the Old Head of Kinsale. The Saturnin, was dismasted & capsized before righting itself. However, its rigging had been snagged by the ship, & it was dragged for several minutes before the tanker was able to lose speed. Pastor was shocked & still on board when the lifeboat reached him. The lifeboat crew had to pass him wire-cutters to cut the rigging, while the tanker stood by. The waves were 25 ft - a big sea running - and he had lost all radio contact after he was dismasted. He is a very lucky man. Mr Pastor was preparing for a round-the-world single-handed yacht race. (Wed. 27 Dec. 2000)

The Panama-flagged, Taiwanese-owned 6,788 dwt M/V Melati, bound for China has been abandoned off Vietnam's southern coast, near Vietnam's Dai Hung oilfield, after a fire broke out onboard. Ships working in the Dai Hung oilfield area came in & rescued all 18 crew. Content of cargo is not clear. The ship was last reported late on Dec. 26 drifting south of Vietnam's southern coast, 47 NM S.W. of Dai Hung. The vessel is thought drifting toward Singapore. (Tues. Dec. 26 2000)

The 170-meter (557-foot) Hong Kong-registered M/V Coral Bulker, from Tallinn (Estonia) with wood, ran aground during a storm off northern Portugal on Dec. 26 triggering fears it could spill several hundred tonnes of fuel oil. The vessel ran into trouble as it waited to enter the northern port of Viana do Castelo which was closed due to the bad conditions, officials from the Maritime Safety and Rescue Service said. The Coral Bulker was carrying some 700 tons of fuel although there was no sign yet of any significant leak. The sea was too rough to attempt to remove bunker fuel, aground on a rocky strip of coast near the entrance to the harbor. The 22-man crew was lifted to safety by a Portuguese Air Force helicopter. (Tues. Dec. 26 2000)

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19 Dec. 2000 at Lagos anchorage, Nigeria. Pirates armed with knives boarded a general cargo ship. The ship weighed anchor & proceeded to open sea with two of the pirates on board. The two pirates threatened the master with death when he enters port and escaped by jumping overboard. After checking it was discovered that some of the ship's safety equipment was stolen. The ship informed the port control but received no response. (Tues. Dec. 26 2000)

19 Dec. 2000 at 1000 LT at Kotabaru anchorage, North of Pulau Laut, Indonesia. Five pirates armed with knives boarded a bulk carrier and stole a life raft from the forecastle deck. (Tues. Dec. 26 2000)

18 Dec. 2000 at Cilacap port, Indonesia. Three pirates armed with long knives boarded a tanker & tied the mechanic on duty in the engine room. Pirates escaped with engine spares. Port control did not respond to ship's call for help. (Tues. Dec. 26 2000)

14. Dec. 2000 at 0520 LT in position: 01:46N - 102:28E, Malacca straits. Pirates attempted to board a container ship via a speedboat. The attempt was abandoned when an alert crew directed searchlight at the boat. (Tues. Dec. 26 2000)

13 Dec. 2000 at 2310 LT in position: 01:58N - 102:14E, Malacca straits. Four pirates armed with long knives boarded a container ship. Pirates fled after seeing the alert crew on deck. (Tues. Dec. 26 2000)

12 Dec. 2000 at 2130 LT in position: 01.15.15N - 104:07.10E, Indonesia. Twelve pirates armed with guns 7 sharp knives boarded a tanker. They threatened the crew & locked them in the mess room. The ship was under control of pirates for three hours. Pirates stole ship's stores & crew belongings. They departed at 0030 LT on 13.12.2000 in position 01:14.6N - 104:05.9E. No injuries to crew. (Tues. Dec. 26 2000)

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The 300-foot diesel-powered Brazilian navy submarine S-21 Toneleiros sank at its mooring in Rio de Janeiro's harbor, local media reported Dec. 25. Officials said there were no injuries or environmental damage. S-21 Toneleiros was undergoing repairs at a navy maintenance dock in the harbor when a malfunction in the vessel's hydraulic system caused it to fill with water late Dec. 24 night. The vessel was reportedly capable of holding at least 4 missiles, but it was not armed at the time of sinking. (Mon. Christmas 2000)

The 3,500-ton M/V Union Star 17, which was dislodged off Pantai Sri Tujuh on Dec 13, sank off Kuala Besut in Terengganu due to a leakage. The merchant vessel, which was on its way to Batam, Indonesia, for repairs, sank between 4pm and 5pm on Dec 16, six nautical miles off Kuala Besut. The captain and 16 crew members were rescued in their life boats by marine police. Some 1,000 tons of sugar on the vessel were transferred to the M/V Union Star 20. (Mon. Christmas 2000)

The 250,000 deadweight ton M/V John R registered in Cyprus, in ballast, ran aground in winter darkness off Arctic northern Norway. northwest of Tromsø about 1 pm despite reportedly good weather in the area. Initial reports claimed that all 26 crew members had abandoned ship & taken to lifeboats. All 26 aboard were taken onto a Puma or a Sea King helicopter (Mon. Christmas 2000)

Coast Guard teams searched Dec. 24 for survivors of the Haiti-bound 163-foot, Belize-flagged freighter M/V Anita -- presumed lost in rough seas with 8 crew members aboard. The Anita left Miami for Haiti early Dec. 23. About 10 a.m., the Coast Guard received a signal from the ship's emergency beacon. Searchers found life rafts, some of the ship's cargo & an oil slick about 45 miles S.E.of Miami, but no sign of the ship or survivors. The search was being hampered by 12-foot seas & 30-mph winds. (Sun. Christmas Eve 2000) UPDATE: The 7th Coast Guard District in Miami has notified that it intends to investigate the apparent sinking of an island freighter Dec. 23 with its captain & 9 crewmen aboard. The missing include Capt. Jose Carvallo of Mertaire, La., & the crew mostly Haitians & Nicaraquans. The Anita left Miami for Gonaives, Haiti, Dec. 23 with a cargo of cooking oil, 13 new cars, 700 tires, 1,200 cases of liquor, 900 cases of champagne, 4,080 cartons of powdered milk, 1,200 bags of beans & sacks of plastic pellets. More than 14 hours out, the Belize-flagged ship's emergency beacon began pulsing. Speculation on the cause of the sinking include a rogue wave or shifting cargo or both. Seas were heavy in the Gulf Stream but not enough to sink a vessel of that size. (Wed. Dec. 27 2000)


By John Masefield

A wind is rustling 'south and soft,'

Cooing a quiet country tune,

The calm sea sighs, and far aloft

The sails are ghostly in the moon.

Unquiet ripples lisp and purr,

A block there pipes and chirps i' the sheave,

The wheel-ropes jar, the reef-points stir

Faintly - and it is Christmas Eve.

The hushed sea seems to hold her breath,

And o'er the giddy, swaying spars,

Silent and excellent as Death,

The dim blue skies are bright with stars.

Dear God - they shone in Palestine

Like this, and yon pale moon serene

Looked down among the lowing kine

On Mary and the Nazarene.

The angels called from deep to deep,

The burning heavens felt the thrill,

Startling the flocks of silly sheep

And lonely shepherds on the hill.

To-night beneath the dripping bows

Where flashing bubbles burst and throng,

The bow-wash murmurs and sighs and soughs

A message from the angel's song.

The moon goes nodding down the west,

The drowsy helmsman strikes the bell;

Rex Judaeorum natus est,

I charge you, brothers, sing Nowell,


Rex Judaeorum natus est.

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The German 5,200 deadweight ton M/V Janra, Finland for Germany with 260 tons of oil & paper products, capsized in the Baltic Sea on Dec. 23. Finnish coastguard authorities said it had probably hit a lighthouse. The 11 crew were all rescued & suffered no injuries. Janra was drifting with the stern visible above the water some 60 km (35 miles) south of the island of Aland in the Baltic Sea. The Troeskeln Vaestra lighthouse has disappeared. The steel lighthouse structure at Troeskeln Vaestra, which stands about 20 meters (yards) clear of the water, has been rebuilt 4 times over the past 10 years after being hit by ships. Visibility at the time of the accident -- around 4 a.m. (0200 GMT) -- was low because of rain & snow. (Sat. Dec. 23 2000)

A crane atop M/V Rickmers Tianjin slammed into a bridge over the Houston Ship Channel, injuring at least 3 motorists on a bridge over the waterway. The Ship Channel & northbound lanes of the Loop 610 bridge were closed soon after the 9:30 p.m. Dec. 21 incident.. The deck crane boom's impact with the underside of the bridge left a hole at its highest point, about 135 feet above the water. Two vehicles apparently smashed into debris that was thrust into the northbound lanes. (Fri. Dec 22 2000)

British yachtsman Pete Goss acknowledged on Dec. 22 that S/V Team Philips, the world's largest racing catamaran, was lost at sea and that his dream of nautical greatness was over. After being abandoned during a gale in mid-Atlantic on Dec.10, the US$5.9M Team Philips was tracked until contact was lost Dec. 18. (Fri. Dec 22 2000) Read Our Original Story & Scroll Down < Click

Bulk carrier M/V IRAN SHARIAT (25,168 gt, built 1983), with 31,000 metric tons of wheat for Iran, grounded at 0345, local time, Dec 20, while proceeding out of the Nidera Jetty in front of the El Transito Terminal, San Lorenzo. She is presently obstructing the access channels to both El Transito and Nidera Berths. (Fri. Dec. 22 2000)

6 Polish crew have been rescued from the 75 meter cargo vessel Barbados-registered M/V Botno in lat 59 51N, long 01 33E (1,097 gt, built 1971) laden with 1,246 tons of coke & 34 tons of gas oil, Humber Estuary for Norway, after it began to take on water. Aberdeen Coastguard received an urgent mayday call from the Botno after it experienced problems 90 miles south east of Lerwick in the Shetland Isles. A Norwegian rescue helicopter airlifted 3 of the crew from the vessel, while an Aberdeen coastguard rescue helicopter arrived from Shetland & deployed coastguard rescue pumps to the three remaining crewmen. The Aberdeen helicopter will standby until the situation is resolved. Preparing to abandon(Wed. Dec. 20 2000)

The tug Trey Deloach & the dredge tender M/V J. C. Love Jr. collided in the Houston Ship Channel, killing a deckhand & sending 5 others into chilly waters before they were rescued. The tug was pushing 2 empty barges at 6 a.m. on Dec. 19 when it collided with the dredge tender. The barges slammed into the dredge and opened a large hole above the waterline. The victim, Juvencio E. De La Garza, died of an apparent drowning, Miller said. He was pulled from the 56-degree water but couldn't be revived, Miller said. The deckhands from the dredge were taken to the hospital and released after treatment for hypothermia and exposure, said interim administrator Jack Julius. The collision didn't cause any vessels to sink, but it forced the channel's closure for 3 hours. (Wed. Dec. 20 2000)

A welder was overcome by smoke & died when a fire swept through the engine-room of container vessel M/V MSC ROSEMARY (24,602 gt), which was undergoing repairs in Durban's dry dock Dec. 19 afternoon. (Wed. Dec. 20 2000)

The 610-foot Panamanian-flagged cruise ship M/V Seabreeze I (21, 010 gt), with a crew of 34, but no passengers, sank off the coast of Virginia Dec. 17 after its engine room flooded. The ship's captain had radioed a distress call Dec. 17 saying he was down to one engine & taking on water. Winds were gusting to 60 mph at the time & the Atlantic waves were hitting 30 feet. Two helicopters rescued the crew from the Sea Breeze I shortly before the vessel sank. The Coast Guard received a distress signal from the ship at about 11:30 a.m. The Sea Breeze I, which is owned by Int'l Shipping Partners of Miami, was about 200 miles east of Cape Charles, Virginia. The ship had been owned by Florida-based Premier Cruises Ltd. until Sept. There were no passengers aboard. Two Coast Guard helicopters rescued the crewmembers, hoisting them from the deck in baskets. They were flown to Oceana Naval Air Station in Virginia Beach. One man with possible cardiac problems was taken to a hospital. All other crew members were checked by Navy medical personnel & released. A review of recent U.S. and Canadian inspection records showed no serious problems. (Mon. Dec. 18 2000)

Hundreds of British passengers on a Christmas cruise to the eastern Mediterranean Dec. 17 staged a mutiny on the 1st day at sea when the M/V Costa Riviera began to list & her lavatories overflowed. Passengers, including families with children, said that Christmas had been ruined. 200 British passengers opted to leave the ship at Naples, & spent last night in hotels. They said the Costa Line, based in Genoa, had agreed to pay for the stay and "return them to their starting point" today. Most had flown to Savona to join the ship. The rebellious passengers claimed the crew of the Costa Riviera had at 1st refused to give them information or admit that she was in trouble. "There was a near riot. We could see that the liner was listing," said Eric Operti, one of the passengers. (Mon. Dec. 18 2000)


11 Dec. 2000 at 2330 UTC at Cochin anchorage, India. Whilst at anchor pirates boarded a tanker via anchor cable & stole Ship's stores. Pirates escaped in a small wooden craft. (Mon. Dec. 18 2000)

11 Dec. 2000 at 1930 LT at crude oil tanker jetty, Cochin, India. Six pirates with knives, crowbars & other weapons boarded a tanker. They cut & stole a forward mooring rope and escaped. This was the second such attack on the same ship. -- Then on10 Dec. 2000 at 0427 LT while anchored at Cochin, pirates armed with knives & crowbars boarded, stole ship's stores & fled in a 50 meter long boat. (Mon. Dec. 18 2000)

11 Dec. 2000 at 0130 LT at Tanjong Manis anchorage, Sarawak, Malaysia. While loading duty a/b on a general cargo ship observed six pirates near forecastle. The alarm was raised & the crew mustered on deck. The intruders jumped overboard & fled taking ship's stores with them. The ship tried to contact the port authority but received no response. (Mon. Dec. 18 2000)

10 Dec. 2000 at 0742 UTC in position: 12:17N - 045:04E, Gulf of Aden. While underway, two small high speedboats each with 2 men in military uniform approached a refrigerated cargo ship. The ship raised alarm and anti-piracy crew mustered on deck. On seeing the crew the boats retreated. (Mon. Dec. 18 2000)

10 Dec. 2000 at 0440 LT in position: 01:06.57N - 103:28.75E, Malacca straits. While anchored, 5 pirates boarded a tanker & tried to steal ship's stores. Alert crew foiled the attempt. (Mon. Dec. 18 2000)

9 Dec. 2000 at 0125 LT Atkipevu oil Terminal, Mombassa port, Kenya. One man cut forward mooring ropes tied to a dolphin thus leaving the tanker with unsafe moorings. The ship informed Mombassa port control & the police arrived at 0310 LT. (Mon. Dec. 18 2000)

8 Dec. 2000 at 1507 LT in position: 00:18.0N - 108:15.0E, Indonesia. While underway, 8 pirates in a speedboat attempted to board a multi purpose car carrier. The master took evasive action & the pirates fled to the nearest island of Pengikik Besar (position: 00:15N - 108:02E). (Mon. Dec. 18 2000)

7 Dec. 2000 at 1515 UTC at anchorage, Santan, East Kalimantan, Indonesia. Pirates boarded a tanker via anchor chain & tried to steal stores. Deck watchman raised the alarm. As a result the pirates fled empty handed. (Mon. Dec. 18 2000)

5 Dec.2000 at 0545 LT at berth no.18, container terminal, Mombassa port, Kenya. A pirate with long knife attacked the ship's watchman on a container ship. Duty officer went to help & found that some of the ship's equipment was stolen. Water police were contacted by VHF. The pirates fled when the police boat arrived. (Mon. Dec. 18 2000)

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Radio Australia reports that Malaysian police have arrested 10 Indonesian pirates in the Straits of Malacca. Marine Police Commander Muhamad Muda said the pirates, aged between 20 and 39, were captured after a nighttime chase. Police seized axes, long knives, swords, hammers & helmets. Three of the 10 pirates were seriously injured trying to flee & were reportedly admitted to a state-owned hospital in the southern state of Johore. Newagencies reported the pirates have been on the wanted list for a long time and had been preying on merchant ships and fishing boats plying the Straits of Malacca. They were also involved in smuggling motorcycles from Malaysia to Indonesia. The group is also suspected of attacking merchant vessels & raiding local fishing boats in the straits. (Sun, Dec 17 2000)

The M/V Steinfalk, with gravel, radioed the Norway National Rescue Center near Stavanger for help in the early hours of Dec. 14 morning, after it had developed a list in gale force winds & heavy seas. Two helicopters & several ships are carrying out a search. Rescue coordinator Terje Langaas at the Rescue Central says to NRK that they are no longer looking for the vessel, but for life rafts & men in survival suits. It is feared that the vessel has gone down, and an oil slick has been discovered in the area. This could be from the missing vessel. A mini sub will be used in an effort to try to locate the wreck. There is bad weather, with heavy rain and poor visability. (Sat. Dec. 16 2000)

The 16 crew of grounded refrigerated Bergen-registered vessel M/V Green Alesund, with 3,500 tons of frozen fish, off western Norway were winched to safety by helicopter on Dec. 15 2000 before the vessal sank & began to leak 400 tons of bunker oil. The Norwegian captain & mostly Polish crew, none of whom was injured, were rescued in high winds just north of Haugesund. Green Alesund had sent a distress signal that it had engine failure & was adrift. The ship with 400 tons of fuel ran aground on an islet just off the west coast & was leaking small amounts of fuel. (Fri. Dec. 15 2000)

The 73 ton Cyprus-flagged ferry M/V Royal Prince sank in rough seas Dec. 13, 125 kilometers SE of Cape Cavo Kiti, Cyprus. The vessel had returned a number of illegal immigrants to Lebanon & was headed back to Cyprus when engine trouble developed in rough seas. Royal Prince began to take in water and sank shortly afterwards. The vessel's 9 crew took to liferafts, from which they were later rescued by a Wessex helicopter from the Akrotiri RAF base in Cyprus. The crew were subsequently transferred to the HMS Herald, a Royal Navy ship responding to the Royal Prince's mayday call. (Thurs. Dec. 14 2000)

Thirty workers on the North Sea drilling rig Stena Spey have been airlifted to dry land after the installation lost an anchor in bad weather & ran across the flow line of a nearby floating production vessel. The workers were taken off the Stena Spey, situated 209 miles east of Aberdeen, when it dragged across the flow line of the Uisge Gorm. (Thurs. Dec. 14 2000)

The damaged M/T Westchester that spilled more than a half-million gallons of oil into the Mississippi river near Port Sulphur has been moved. The tanker has been taken upriver so that the remaining cargo can be unloaded & repairs can begin. The tanker ran aground on Nov. 28 after losing power. As of early this week, crews had recovered almost 524,000 gallons of oil from the river. See Nov. 29 & 30 for original stories. (Thurs. Dec. 14 2000)

The 93-meter German registered M/V Lagik, with steel, is stuck in the River Nene at Sutton Bridge, Lincolnshire, blocking the Port of Sutton Bridge & at risk of breaking up. Crew managed to get to safety & emergency services are waiting for high tide, expected at 8am this morning, to assess how she can be recovered. The Port of Sutton Bridge has confirmed that the Lagik got into trouble as she was manoeuvring into position at 9.20 pm on Dec. 13. (Thurs. Dec. 14 2000)

Cambodian M/V SALAVAT YULAEV (1,426 gt, built 1969) was towed into Corfu morning of Dec 12 by tug Megalohari after experiencing engine failure approximately 16 miles south of Paxos. Repairs to be effected at Corfu. (Wed. Dec. 13 2000)

Pirate Alert >>> Fears are growing that pirates have hijacked the 17-year-old coastal ship M/V Jasmin 1 which disappeared with its 10 crew over a week ago in the Strait of Malacca between Malaysia and Indonesia. The 57-meter, 1,300 dead weight ton Jasmin 1 with $263,000 cargo of sugar, left the port of Batam, near Singapore, on Nov. 29 and should have arrived at its destination on the northern tip of Sumatra island a week ago. The Jasmin's captain is Burmese & the 9 crew are Indonesian. Thieves could easily sell the sugar. An official at the Piracy Reporting Center in Kuala Lumpur said on Dec. 12 the center had been informed that the ship was reported missing. In its latest weekly Internet report (, the Piracy Reporting Center said "increasing numbers of piracy incidents have been reported in the Malacca Straits...the same armed gang of pirates seems to have repeatedly attacked ships." The strait is a major shipping route and the most pirate-infested stretch of water in the world. In the first 9 months of this year pirates attacked 32 ships in the strait, making off with goods worth an average US$20,000 in each attack, according to a report by the Int'l Maritime Bureau. (Tues. Dec. 12 2000)

Rough seas & gale force winds forced the cargo carrier M/V BBC Brazil into a Cape Breton harbor for repairs to a 2 meter long crack in its hull on Dec. 10 afternoon. The BBC Brazil, a German-owned carrier, was slammed by 10 meter seas Dec. 10 morning in the Cabot Strait, forcing it to seek shelter along the Cape Breton coast. Earlier in the day the ship -- about the length of a football field -- reported a shift in its deck cargo, which caused the ship to list badly. Vessel subsequently berthed Sydney, NS, for inspection. (Mon. Dec. 11 2000)

Ghost Ship >>> The British-registered Spanish F/V Zorro Zaurre believed to have sunk a week ago has floated 140 miles in to the south-west Irish coast & has landed on rocks close to where its sister ship was wrecked more than a decade ago. Navigational warnings have been issued since Dec. 8, giving the location of the Zorro Zaurre, now submerged on rocks near Roancarrig lighthouse in Bantry Bay. The ship was last heard of when it got into difficulties with 13 crew on board 140 miles south of Mizen Head on Nov. 30th. All the crew were airlifted by the RAF to Cornwall after the vessel sprang a leak. The crew described the ship as being swamped with water and said they believed it was within an hour of sinking. On Dec. 8 the naval ship LE Orla was asked to follow up a report that a slight diesel slick & fish boxes had been seen in Bantry Bay just east of Castletownbere. A Naval Service diving team identified the sunken wreck, which landed 400 metres from its sister vessel, the F/V Nuestra Señora de Gardotza. WOW! (Sun. Dec. 10 2000)

Rescued 1 am Pacific >>> The crew of S/V Team Philips, the world's largest racing catamaran, has been rescued from the US$11M vessel after it was badly damaged in the Atlantic. The container ship M/V Hoechst Express answered a mayday call from the 7 crew aboard the stricken catamaran. The transfer has been effected successfully. The crew are safe and well and now on their way to Halifax, Novia Scotia. The Hoechst Express used a lull between 2 bad weather systems to get alongside the US$11M catamaran and allow the crew to scramble up nets and through the pilot entrance into the ship. The vessel has been secured as far as possible. It will be left to drift around for the moment but a plan is being put together to effect a recovery. (Sun. Dec. 10 2000)

Rescue Update 12 am Pacific >>> The container ship M/V Hoechst Express answered a mayday call & has reached the stricken catamaran. "A transfer is taking place as we speak. We are waiting to hear that everybody has been taken off," the spokesman said from the Team Philips base. The 7 crew sent out a mayday call after the British vessel lost most of its steering control when it was hit by a series of heavy waves in gale force conditions about 750 miles (1,200 km) off the west coast of Ireland. (Sat. Dec. 9 2000)

Rescue Update 11 pm Pacific >>> The crew of S/V Team Philips, the world's largest racing catamaran, will abandon ship at 1st light after the vessel was badly damaged by severe storms in the Atlantic. The British vessel lost most of its steering control when it was hit by a series of heavy, frequent waves in gale force conditions about 750 miles off the coast of Ireland. Help in the form of a container ship M/V Hoechst Express is expected to reach the stricken vessel by 0700 GMT. (Sat. Dec. 9 2000)

Rescue Operation 8 pm Pacific >>> The crew of Britsh S/V Team Philips, the world's largest racing catamaran, are preparing to abandon ship after being hit by storms in the Atlantic Ocean.The spokeswoman said the sailors sent out a mayday call after the British vessel was hit by a series of heavy, frequent waves in gale force conditions about 750 miles (1200 km) off the coast of Ireland. Conditions are very extreme with very large waves. The spokeswoman said the 7 crew members, including Capt. Pete Goss, were safe & were assessing the damage. They were making preparations to abandon the ship, aware that another severe storm was bearing down on their location. The plans were precautionary at this stage. Help is on the way in the form of an unidentified container ship diverted to the scene by the Falmouth Coastguard in England. But at 0100 GMT, help was still nearly 4 hours away from reaching the stricken vessel. This is the latest in a series of problems for the US$11M catamaran. In Oct., it had to turn back 18 hours into a trial voyage to New York when one of its masts began to sway. In March, the catamaran suffered near disaster off the Isles of Scilly when part of its starboard bow snapped off. Team Philips was conducting sea trials in preparation for The Race, a non-stop round-the-world race which starts in Barcelona on Dec. 31. (Sat. Dec. 9 2000)

The damaged Panamanian-flagged tanker M/T Eastern Power that had leaked crude oil off Canada's eastern coast was given approval Dec. 9 to head for Newfoundland for repairs at an oil refinery dock. Federal officials are confident that the Eastern Power won't spill any oil as it enters Placentia Bay bound for the Come by Chance oil refinery in Newfoundland. Upon arrival, the tanker will be inspected and repaired before oil is unloaded from its tanks. It is expected to arrive in Placentia Bay by Monday. Canadian officials had first denied the Eastern Power, carrying 1.9 million barrels of crude, entry into the country's 200-mile sea limit due to fears spilling oil would damage the environment. The ship was in no danger of breaking up as it lurched through 16-foot-high waves driven by hurricane-force winds, said Landry, speaking for the government ministry that handles shipping. The ship sprang a leak late Dec. 6. The ship's Master assured officials the leaking stopped after the crew transferred 13,500 barrels of oil from one tank to another. A Coast Guard reconnaissance flight on Dec. 7 confirmed that the leaking had stopped. But Transport Canada had refused to allow the ship inside Canada's 200-mile jurisdictional limits Dec. 8, as officials considered the company's plan to prevent more oil from escaping once the Panamanian-registered vessel resumed its journey. (Sat. Dec. 9 2000)


3 Dec. 2000 at 0320 UTC in position: 12:31.5N - 045:00E, Gulf of Aden, five small high-speed crafts each with 2 persons inside approached a general cargo ship. Crew were mustered & the boats aborted attempted boarding & departed towards Aden. (Fri. Dec. 8 2000)

02 Dec. 2000 at 0410 LT at Fazendinha anchorage, Santana port, Brazil. Anti-piracy watch on a bulk carrier spotted 3 pirates armed with knives & guns on the forecastle. Port control was informed but took no action. Pirates escaped with ship's stores. (Fri. Dec. 8 2000)

1 Dec. 2000 at 0130 UTC at Owendo port, Gabon. While berthed, duty crew found 2 pirates on forecastle. Duty officer raised alarm & mustered the crew. Pirates stole ship's stores & jumped Overboard. (Fri. Dec. 8 2000)

30 Nov. 2000 at 2118 UTC in position: 01:42N - 102:34E, Malacca Straits. Pirates armed with long knives boarded a tanker. They stole ship's stores & cash from the crew and escaped in a small boat. (Fri. Dec. 8 2000)

30 Nov. 2000 at 0245 LT at Panjang anchorage, Indonesia. Three pirates armed with long knives boarded a tanker from the poop deck. They were spotted by anti-piracy watch who raised alarm & mustered the crew. The pirates jumped over board & escaped in a small boat. (Fri. Dec. 8 2000)

28 Nov. 2000 at 1530 UTC in position: 25:03.5N - 056:27.9E, 5.8nm from Kalba breakwater, off UAE coast. While at anchor, 4 pirates on a small craft attempted to board a LPG carrier by throwing a line with hooks. The crew chased away the pirates by using high pressurised jet water. The pirate's craft with outboard motor was 7 - 8 meters long, 2 meters wide with white hull & red stripes. (Fri. Dec. 8 2000)

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Panamanian tanker M/T EASTERN POWER (126,993 gt, built 1976), Middle East for Come by Chance with cargo of crude oil, sustained crack in No 1 starboard cargo tank below the waterline on Dec 6 due to heavy weather. Vessel continuing on voyage and will be inspected by Transport Canada before she enters Come by Chance, ETA Dec 8. (Thurs. Dec. 7 2000)

Maltese ro-ro M/V NEPTUNIA (8,457 gt, built 1977), Boulogne for Folkestone, had trimethylacetyl chloride drums on a lorry rupture during heavy weather on Dec 4. Neptunia failed to enter Folkestone in very heavy seas & returned to Boulogne. The chemical had spread over the vessel's deck & Boulogne firemen were assessing the situation. Several passengers & crew were being treated in hospital. (Thurs. Dec. 7 2000)

Maltese container vessel M/V ULTRA CONTAINER (6,111 gt, built 1990) was in collision with American bulk carrier M/V LIBERTY SPIRIT (33,337 gt, built 1986) at Haifa on Dec. 3. Bow of Ultra Container struck starboard side of Liberty Spirit, causing a hole 4.5 meters x 2.5 meters at the waterline. Seawater entered cargo hold No 4 & a substantial quantity of soyabean cargo. Seawater entered cargo hold No 4 & a substantial quantity of soyabean cargo. Ultra Container sustained heavy hull damage. (Tues. Dec. 5 2000)

The Antigua flagged M/V Southern Queen anchored at the Jetty No 1 of the Chittagong Port with 2,000 MT of copra caught fire Dec. 3. She arrived in the port on Nov. 28 from Singapore. Almost all the fire fighting vehicles of the port city rushed to the spot and extinguished the blaze at about 9.00 pm tonight after 3 hours of frantic efforts. The ship was badly damaged in the fire. The origin of fire could not be immediately known. UPDATE: The vessel sank, being 70% under water on Dec. 5. (Mon. Dec. 4 2000)

Six sailors of an unidentified cargo ship which sank near the estuary of the Yangtze River Nov. 30 evening were rescued. So far, 2 crew have been found dead & 12 are still missing, said officials with the Shanghai Salvage Bureau. There were 20 crew aboard the ship, belonging to Zhenhua Shipping Company of neighboring Zhejiang Province. The ship sank when it encountered strong gale force winds. The rescue efforts are still underway. (Sun. Dec. 3 2000)

There was an early Nov. 29 morning collision between a Japanese tanker M/T Taisei Maru, & a fishing vessel approximately 10 km east of Kamaishi, a major fishing port, approximately 460 km north-east of Tokyo, spilling hundreds of thousands of litres of petrol into the Pacific Ocean. Later reports suggest that the fishing vessel caught fire around 4 hours after the collision. It remains unclear if the fire resulted directly from the collision, the subsequent spill, or another unrelated incident. Seventeen crew members on board the fishing vessel were injured in the blaze, while 5 have been hospitalised in stable conditions. (Sun. Dec. 3 2000)

The 73-foot shrimper F/V Miss Suzanne arrived safely in Ft. Myers on Dec. 1, after taking on water about 45 miles northwest of Key West Nov. 30 when the U.S. Coast Guard was alerted. F/V Captain Adams, another commercial fishing vessel, assisted the Miss Suzanne until a dewatering pump was dropped by a Coast Guard HH-60 helicopter from U.S. Coast Guard Air Station Clearwater. Then, the USCGC Chincoteague, a 110-foot patrol boat from Key West, arrived on the scene. A rescue team went aboard & was able to control the flooding. Miss Suzanne was escorted by the Coast Guard to Ft. Meyers. (Sat. Dec. 2 2000)


26 Nov. 2000 at 0530 UTC in position: 12:17N - 044:52E, Southern Red Sea. Seven persons in 3 speedboats made two attempts to board a French sailing yacht. The yacht took evasive action & the boarding was averted. (Fri. Dec. 1 2000)

25 Nov. 2000 at 1400 UTC at port of Nacala, Mozambique. While discharging, duty crew found a stevedore armed with knife lowering ship's stores in to the sea. He was caught & handed over to police. (Fri. Dec. 1 2000)

23 Nov. 2000 at 0330 UTC in position: 05:44N - 095:17E, 3 miles off Pulau We, Northern tip of Sumatra, Indonesia. While underway three speedboats with red & blue stripes chased a general cargo ship. The ship raised alarm and crew mustered on deck. The boats came very close to the ship's port and stbd bow. At 0430 hrs the boats slowed down & retreated. (Fri. Dec. 1 2000)

22 Nov. 2000 at 0230 UTC in position: 08:49N - 076:13E, India. Pirates in 5 speedboats boarded a barge, which was under tow & stole spare parts. An hour later pirates reboarded but did not steal anything. (Fri. Dec. 1 2000)

20 Nov. 2000 at 2335 LT in position: 01:47.2N - 102:25.3E, Malacca Straits. While underway about 15 pirates boarded a tanker & took the master, chief engineer & radio officer hostage. They ransacked the accommodation and stole US$7,000 & personal effects from crew. Pirates left after 40 minutes in a speedboat towards Indonesian coast. (Fri. Dec. 1 2000)

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Vessel Loss Dispatches For November 2000

A 13-mile (21-km) section of the lower Mississippi River remained shut to southbound traffic on Nov. 30 after a crude oil spill, keeping some 35 ships from entering the Gulf of Mexico. Northbound traffic was opened up on Nov. 29 evening as planned and the Coast Guard expected southbound traffic would reopen sometime Nov. 30 morning. But 35 ships were queued up & many others up the Mississippi were not leaving their origination points because of the delays caused by yhe groundiing of M/T Westchester. See below for Nov. 29. (Thurs. Nov. 30 2000)

RAF rescue helicopters have winched the 13 crew members of the sinking Spanish trawler F/V Zorro Zaure to safety. The British-registered boat, the Zorro Zaure, was within 30 minutes of sinking as her crew were airlifted off about 200 miles south west of Lands End. She broadcast a distress signal, which was picked up by Valencia radio & passed to Coastguards at Falmouth, Cornwall. The Coastguards scrambled helicopters from RAF Chivenor in Devon & RAF Kinloss in Scotland. At the time of the rescue, there was a Force 8 to 9 gale, with heavy seas & a 9 ft swell. (Thurs. Nov. 30 2000)

Final Tragedy .......... as as a senior shipping executive whose company faced snowballing lawsuits over sinking of the Greek ferry M/V Express Samina that killed 80 people in Sept., plunged to his death from his 6th floor office on Nov. 29. Police said Pantelis Sfinias, VP of the board of directors of Minoan Flying Dolphins, a subsidiary of Minoan Lines, was seen by passersby & employees falling off the building in the port of Piraeus. The Express Samina sank off the island of Paros with 500 people aboard in Greece's worst maritime tragedy in decades. Police said Sfinias stepped out of his office onto the balcony & then threw himself on to a car on Greece's main shipping avenue, Akti Kondyli. They said they had not found a note. Friends told television that Sfinias had been depressed since the sinking & felt unjustly blamed for the tragedy. (Wed. Nov. 29 2000) NOTE: Read The Full Story

The 800-foot M/T Westchester lost power Nov. 28 evening & apparently ran aground about 60 miles south of New Orleans, spilling 546,000 gallons of crude oil & closing traffic to a 26-mile stretch of the Mississippi River. The cause of the spill was not known. A cargo tank lost about 13,000 barrels of Nigerian sweet crude. A standard barrel contains 42 U.S. gallons. Closures stretched from the accident site to near the mouth of the Mississippi River. The cleanup could last for weeks. (Wed. Nov. 29 2000)

The 81-foot tugboat Sea Way 10, apparently abandoned since summer, broke free of its illegal mooring during the weekend & drifted 20 miles through heavily traveled Puget Sound. The rusting derelict eventually ran aground in Useless Bay on southern Whidbey Island. A marine towing company was hired to haul the 146-ton Sea Way 10 back to the site it had been moored. Coast Guard inspectors boarded the derelict last month & found that it has no fuel or oil on board, although its batteries still contain acid. Coast Guard officials said they hoped to board the vessel Mon. to confirm that no fuel was on board. The Sea Way 10 appeared in midsummer when it was illegally moored to a Corps of Engineers buoy near the mouth of the Lake Washington Ship Canal in northern Seattle. (Mon. Nov. 27 2000)

Turkish M/V DENIZ KIZI (1,596 gt, built 1976), Le Havre for Algeria with cargo of bagged sugar, had water ingress into one ballast tank on Nov 22. Tug Abeille Flandre escorted vessel to anchorage off Camaret. On Nov 24, Port State Control inspectors concluded it was necessary to divert vessel to Brest. Vessel anchored off Brest the same evening to await representatives from owners & Classification Society. (Mon. Nov. 27 2000)

Pollution experts were on standby Nov. 26 after a partly disabled Chinese cargo M/V Hebei Treasure, for the Irish port of Cork, drifted close to the rocky English coast in high winds. The vessel sent out a distress call Nov. 25 night after it suffered steering problems off the Cornish coast. But the ship then recovered some power, and was being escorted by tug to the southern English port of Falmouth. Hebei Treasure was carrying a cargo of metal ore, including magnesium, which reacts violently with water. But the major pollution threat came from 370 tons of diesel & oil aboard. (Mon. Nov. 27 2000)

RESCUE OPERATION >>> The South African hydrographic survey navy vessel SAS Protea proceeding, in rough seas, for the remote South Atlantic -- Gough Island to rescue 3 fishermen stranded for a week with the body of a drowned shipmate. SAS Protea, with helicopter aboard, is due to reach the British-administered island -- 2,350 kM southwest of Cape Town -- by Nov. 28 . The fishermen have been on the island since 2 of their colleagues drowned, & were living on emergency rations sent on a "rocket line" fired from their vessel F/V Edinburgh. The men, who had apparently been fishing for crayfish, were stranded and unable to be rescued by their ship. (Sun. Nov. 26)

French naval authorities have sent a tug to rescue the 264 ft Cypriot general cargo M/V Olivia with motor trouble as it drifted at sea. Olivia was bound for the Scottish port of Leith with a shipment of corn. She is floating about 12 miles from the city of Biscarosse in south-west France with 8 crew. France has been especially mindful of reports of trouble at sea since a tanker broke in two off the coast of Brittany in December, spilling millions of gallons of oil into the Atlantic and on to the region's beaches. On October 31, another tanker, the M/T Ievoli Sun, sank in the English Channel with a cargo of dangerous chemicals. (Sun. Nov. 26 2000)

Riverboat M/V Princesa Amanda believed to be carrying more than 80 passengers capsized Nov. 25 in the northern Brazilian jungle state of Amazonas, officials said. At least 16 people drowned, with 14 more missing. Princesa Amanda apparently struck a sandbar on the Solimoes River near the city of Manaus, 1,640 miles northwest of Sao Paulo. Many of the passengers -- sleeping on hammocks strung up on the boat's upper deck -- were hurled into the river's murky waters. Some managed to swim to shore, and others were rescued by residents of small villages located along the river's margins. (Sat. Nov. 25 2000)


18.Nov. 2000 at 0130 LT at Panjang Pilot station, Indonesia. About 8 pirates from a small boat boarded a bulk Carrier via forecastle and entered the engine room. They tied up the duty oiler, stole engine spares & escaped in their boat. (Fri. Nov. 24 2000)

18 Nov. 2000 at 2156 LT in position: 01:16N - 104:07E, Singapore. A small unlit craft came alongside a tanker but was noticed by crew who switched on the aldis lamp. The attempted boarding was abandoned. (Fri. Nov. 24 2000)

17 Nov. 2000 in position: 22:10.2N - 091:45.9E, Chittagong, Bangladesh. Eight pirates in a boat approached the stern of a General cargo ship. One pirate boarded & stole Ship's stores. When challenged by crew the pirate threatened the crew. (Fri. Nov. 24 2000)

On 16 Nov.2000 at 1400 UTC in position: 01:6N - 102:9E, Malacca straits. Several persons in four fishing boats came close to a multi purpose ship and tried to board. They aborted the attempted boarding seeing the alert crew. (Fri. Nov. 24 2000)

16 Nov. 2000 at 0700 UTC at position: 04:21N - 049:49E, approximately 80 miles off Somalian coast. A suspicious supply boat/fishing trawler, chased a general cargo ship for 2 hours. The ship took evasive action until the chase was aborted. The suspicious boat had white accommodation & grey hull. (Fri. Nov. 24 2000)

15 Nov. 2000 at 1115 UTC at Vott veg oil terminal, jetty No.3, Chittagong, Bangladesh. Pirates stole zinc anodes on rudder of a chemical tanker. The duty engineer heard a knocking sound at stern & alerted the crew. Pirates fled seeing the crew on deck. Theft took place although shore Watchmen were stationed on the poop deck.

14 Nov. 2000 at 1040 LT position: 08:05.79N - 077:02.56E, off Cape Comorin, India. Four pirates on a wooden boat boarded a barge which was being towed by a ship. They stole emergency towing wire and fled at 1105 LT when the alarm was raised. They tried to board the barge again at 1155 hrs. (Fri. Nov. 24 2000)

12 Nov. 2000 at Mongla, Bangladesh. While at anchor, four wooden boats each carrying about 5-6 pirates tried to board a general cargo ship. The Ship's own anti piracy watch & 6 shore guards prevented the boarding. However, the pirates stole zinc anodes welded to the hull. (Fri. Nov. 24 2000)

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Tanker M/T DESTINY (23,333 gt, built 1980), in ballast, bound Ishigaki, grounded in strong winds in lat 24 28.8N, long 123 48.61E, on Ishigaki Shima, off coast of Taiwan, on Nov. 21. Crew evacuated by Japanese Coast Guard helicopter. Salvage tug is on scene together with representatives of the ship management company. Hoped vessel will be refloated at 1800, local time, Nov 24. (Fri. Nov. 24 2000)

Ole Mindor Myklebust, the 51-year-old skipper of the whaler M/V Kato, was given a suspended 6 month jail sentence and fined US$2,100 plus costs by the Stavanger City Court for shooting at Greenpeace activists during a confrontation at sea. The Winchester rifle he used was also confiscated. He has a month to decide whether to appeal. Confrontations between environmentalists & Norwegian whalers have become commonplace since the nation resumed its hotly protested hunts in 1993, despite a global ban. However, the July 1999 conflict off Norway's west coast was among the most serious, when a shot fired from the Kato hit a rubber boat with 2 Greenpeace activists aboard in the North Sea. The demonstrators had tried to get between the Kato and a harpooned whale. Myklebust had said earlier that the activists were at fault for getting in between him and the wounded whale he was trying to kill. He was not available for comment. (Fri. Nov. 24 2000)

The Master of Swedish (1,700 gt) Ro-Ro car ferry M/V Britta Oden, Southampton for Vigo, Spain, made a Mayday call at 2:07 a.m. after suffering engine failure 30 miles south of Portland Bill. With 16 passengers & the cargo of cars in danger in the severe force 9 winds, Portland Coastguard issued a Mayday Relay to area vessels. Rescue helicopter from RAF Chivenor was in the air &1st to arrive. Britta Oden now under tow by the ET/V Anglian Earl, assisted by ET/V Anglian Duke, escorted by HMS Kent. (Thurs. Nov. 23 2000)

Greek passenger vessel M/V N. KAZANTZAKIS (11,174 gt, built 1972), from Piraeus with over 550 passengers on board, grounded in the port of Iraklion on November 18. Vessel was safely refloated & inspected by divers. Vessel subsequently effecting repairs at Iraklion. (Wed. Nov. 22 2000)

The ro-ro cargo/ferry M/V ASIA MALAYSIA (2,439 gt, built 1974) was in collision with M/V SULPICIO CONTAINER V (2,677 gt, built 1978) at Fort San Pedro port area in Iloilo on Nov. 17. Both vessels sustained damage. Asia Malaysia holed at upper port quarter, Sulpicio Container V sustained dents in bow. (Wed. Nov. 22 2000)

Bahamian M/V MILLENIUM AMETHYST (14,153 gt, built 1978), in ballast to load grain at Duluth, contacted lock wall while entering Eisenhower Lock & vessel docked at Wharf 2, Welland Canal, for repairs to starboard bow. (Wed. Nov. 22 2000)

Firefighters are still trying to extinguish a 2 alarm blaze aboard the 280-foot F/V Pacific Scout at Portland's Swan Island which started about 10:30 Nov. 20 morning after a piece of molten metal from a cutting torch fell down a vent & into the ship's living quarters. Firefighters worked through the night to contain the fire. Crews cut holes in the hull to allow water spill inside, hopefully putting out the flames. Pacific Scout was being scrapped at the Cascade General Shipyard. (Wed. Nov. 22 2000)


13 Nov. 2000 at Anowra Thana, Bangladesh. An Indonesian ship was attacked when the local agent refused to hand over "toll" to the pirates. A number of persons on the ship were injured. Local police arrested 3 pirates. The ship was attacked again by another group of pirates a day later & goods worth millions of Takas were looted. The pirates attacked the guards on board & one guard is in a critical condition. (Fri. Nov. 17 2000)

13 Nov. 2000 Berthed at C.I.B. no. 2, Cilacap, Indonesia. Three pirates armed with knives boarded a tanker. They were spotted by anti piracy watch who raised the alarm. The pirates jumped overboard & escaped in a small motorboat. (Fri. Nov. 17 2000)

12 Nov. 2000 at 1220 LT at Tg. Priok anchorage, Indonesia. 5 pirates armed with long knives boarded a chemical tanker & stole valuable engine spares. (Fri. Nov. 17 2000)

9 Nov. 2000 at 0340 LT in position: 01:46N - 102:27E, Malacca straits. 15 pirates from2 speedboats boarded a container ship. They stole cash, documents, ship's property & crew's valuables. (Fri. Nov. 17 2000)

9 Nov. 2000 at 0055 LT at Chennai outer anchorage, India. 6 pirates boarded a bulk carrier. Duty crew observed them & raised the alarm. Off duty crew joined the deck patrol & chased the pirates who fled in their boat. (Fri. Nov. 17 2000)

8 Nov. 2000 at 1730 UTC in position: 22:15N - 091:44E, Chittagong 'A' anchorage, Bangladesh. Pirates boarded a chemical tanker from the stern. Duty officer raised the alarm. The pirates jumped into the water & escaped in a waiting motorboat with 2 other accomplices. The ship tried to call port control for reporting the incident but there was no response. (Fri. Nov. 17 2000)

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The 8,450-ton ferry M/V Neptunia (Folkestone for Boulogne) collided with the Dutch tug, Pieter in the English Channel early today, 6 miles (10 kms) off the southeastern English port of Dover. Both vessels were slightly damaged, but were able to continue their journeys, and the ferry which took in a small amount of water. A member of the tug's crew suffered a minor head injury. (Tues. Nov. 14 2000)

Tug boats towed the Malaysian 23,150-ton M/V Bunga Teratai Satu with dangerous cargo off the Great Barrier Reef on Nov. 14, 12 days after it ran aground on the coral. Bunga Teratai Satu became stuck Nov. 2 on a section of the reef near Cairns in N.E. Australia. Four tug boats dragged it off the reef at high tide. The ship was loosened over the weekend when salvage teams set off small explosive charges around the hull to blast away coral - a move that environmental groups worried could damage the fragile marine ecosystem. There is no immediate sign of pollution from the ship, whose cargo included chemicals-based products listed as "dangerous". First officer, Mashkoor Hussain Khan of Pakistan, has just pleaded guilty to charges of negligently navigating a ship & damaging the coral reef. Indeed, there is word that the Capt. was not aboard at the time of loss. Khan & the company face fines up to US$53,000 for each violation of environment laws protecting the reef. The incident prompted conservation groups to call for ships carrying dangerous cargo to be banned from the Great Barrier Reef. The 1,200-mile Great Barrier Reef is the largest complex of coral reefs & islands in the world, comprising more than 2,600 individual reefs & some 300 islands off Australia's east coast. The reef, listed as a World Heritage Site, is a magnet for scientists as well as snorkelers & divers & a major tourist draw card for Queensland state. Indeed, we love this place as quite "one of a kind" and to be protected at all costs. (Tues. Nov. 14 2000) Follow our coverage of this story << CLICK HERE. ,

The Maltese-registered 150,000 ton bulk carrier M/V XL, drifting off northwestern Australia since a fire killed 2 crew on Nov. 10, is due to be towed to Singapore Nov. 16. Tug dispatched. Fire broke out in the XL's engine room on Nov. 10 night when the carrier, believed to be unladen, was sailing to Port Hedland in Western Australia from Singapore. The bodies of the 2 men who died in the engine room were taken to Port Hedland on today. The ship had probably been en route to pick up a cargo of iron ore from BHP Ltd. (Sat. Nov. 11 2000)


06 Nov. 2000 at 0128 LT in position: 01:56.5N - 102:19.0E, Malacca Straits. While underway, about 20 armed pirates boarded a bulk carrier and took hostage all crewmembers & robbed their valuables & cash. (Sat. Nov. 10 2000)

05 Nov. 2000 at 0300 UTC in position: 09:10N - 013.44.7W, Conakry, Guinea. Pirates armed with machine guns boarded a general cargo ship and robbed the master of USD 3,000 and ship's equipment. (Sat. Nov. 10 2000)

05 Nov. 2000 at 0125 LT in position: 01:49.5N - 102:23.2E, Malacca Straits. While underway, pirates boarded a general cargo ship and robbed cash & valuables from crew. They escaped at 0445 by a speedboat. (Sat. Nov. 10 2000)

04. Nov. 2000 at 0510 LT in position: 01:45.9N - 102:32E, Malacca Straits. While underway, duty officer of a general cargo ship spotted pirates on board and a 10 metre long red boat alongside on the starboard quarter. The duty officer fired one warning shot from his shotgun and mustered all crew. The pirates jumped over board & escaped. (Sat. Nov. 10 2000)

04 Nov. 2000 0200-0400 LT Tg. Priok, Indonesia. While at anchor pirates boarded a bulk carrier & stole 2 life rafts. (Sat. Nov. 10 2000)

3 Nov. 2000 at 0325 LT at Sandakan inner roads, Malaysia. A speedboat approached a bulk carrier's bow and a pirate boarded by using a rope & a hook. A crewmember spotted him, the alarm was raised and crew mustered. The pirate jumped into the water and escaped in a boat, which had 6 other pirates. (Sat. Nov. 10 2000)

30 Nov. 2000 at 2300 in position:00:31S - 103:24.4E at inner harbour anchorage, Kuala Enok, Indonesia. Eight pirates in a wooden boat approached a tanker within five meters of ship's side. The duty officer raised emergency alarm; all crew mustered & fired 3 rockets. After 30 minutes the boat retreated.

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All 14 crew of Russian cargo M/V Yelena were rescued after their vessel sank near Iran's Caspian Sea port of Bandar Anzali today. Yelena, carrying 3,200 tons of cargo including iron goods & wood, sank 3 miles out to sea after a container broke loose and smashed a hole in the ship's hull. (Fri. Nov. 9 2000)

An explosion on the Turkish tanker M/T Olcay S. in balast on Nov. 6, Istanbul for Libya, off the Greek island of Crete killed 1 crewman & injured 2 others. The injured crew were taken to hospital on Crete. The tanker, currently in Int'l waters, is now returning home. (Mon. Nov. 6 2000)

All 25 crew members were rescued Nov. 5 from cargo vessel M/V Ryazan that began listing when its cargo shifted in a severe storm in the Bering Sea in Russia's Far East. Ryazan sent a distress signal when it reported a list of about 40 degrees after the cargo was displaced. Two fishing trawlers safely removed the crew from the listing ship, anchored off the coast of Cape Navarin in the northern Kamchatka Peninsula. The Ryazan was still afloat late Nov. 5, and the icebreaker Krasin was expected to arrive on the scene Nov. 6 to possibly tow the stricken cargo ship to port. (Mon. Nov. 6 2000)

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29 Oct. 2000 at 2030 UTC in position: 05:31S - 105:19E, Tarahan anchorage, Indonesia. Pirates boarded a bulk carrier. They entered the engine room, broke into the storeroom by destroying locks and stole a large quantity of spare parts. (Sun. Nov. 5 2000)

29 Oct. 2000 at 0220 UTC in position: 05:33S - 104:38E, Teluk Semangka, Indonesia. While at anchor a pirate boarded a tanker but was caught by anti piracy watch. Later he was transferred to a police boat. (Sun. Nov. 5 2000)

29 Oct. 2000 at 1900 LT in position: 00:14.0S - 117:34.8E, Samarinda anchorage, Indonesia. Seven pirates armed with long knives boarded a bulk carrier via stern and stole ship's stores. (Sun. Nov. 5 2000)

26 Oct. 2000 at 0510 LT in position: 01:43N - 102:46E, Malacca straits. While underway, persons in a speedboat attempted to board a general cargo ship. Boarding was avoided by alertness of the crew. (Sun. Nov. 5 2000)

26 Oct. 2000 at 0510 LT in position: 01:27N - 103:11E, Malacca straits. While underway, a speedboat approached a container ship. Pirates from the boat attempted to board but alert crew prevented boarding. (Sun. Nov. 5 2000)

25.10.2000 in position 00:44.8N - 103:42.2E, Malacca straits. About 60-80 pirates boarded a ship at anchor. The ship's crew fought with the pirates & eventually the pirates left the ship. Two crewmembers were slightly injured. The ship cut off anchor chain and proceeded to Singapore. (Sun. Nov. 5 2000)

25 Oct. 2000 at 0730 UTC in position: 12:43N - 043:17E, Northern end of Bab El Mandeb, Red Sea. Several speedboats surrounded a chemical tanker & persons from two boats attempted to board. The ship's crew mustered & activated fire hoses. On seeing crew alertness, the boats retreated. (Sun. Nov. 5 2000)

25 Oct. 2000 at 0740 LT at Vott terminal, RM-no.3, Chittagong, Bangladesh. During discharging operations, pirates in 2 boats approached the stern of a chemical tanker. They stole zinc anodes welded to the sternpost. Theft took place although there were 10 local watchmen on board. (Sun. Nov. 5 2000)

24 Oct. 2000 at 2315 LT at Haiphong, Vietnam. Duty officer on a LPG carrier noticed pirates trying to open the forecastle store. He raised the alarm and crew were mustered. On seeing the crew the pirates climbed down into their boat using own rope & escaped. (Sun. Nov. 5 2000)

24.10.2000 at 0045 LT in position: 22:11.9N - 091:44.8E at anchorage 'B' Chittagong, Bangladesh. About 25 persons armed with long knives in 3 boats boarded a tanker. Crew tried to resist but the pirates outnumbered them. Pirates threatened the crew and stole ship's stores. Port control was informed and one and half-hours later a coast guard ship arrived on the scene. (Sun. Nov. 5 2000)

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The Brazil oil tanker M/T Verginia II smashed into a pier as it tried to dock at Sao Sebastiao on Nov. 4, spilling more than 22,000 gallons of crude oil into the ocean at a port in southeastern Brazil. Sao Sebastiao, is a tourist resort area some 120 miles east of Sao Paulo. Workers set up floating barriers & used vacuums in an effort to remove the stains from the beaches. The fine will be US$515,000. (Sun. Nov. 5 2000)

Panamanian asphalt tanker M/T TOWA (1,202 tons gross, built 1973) sank in lat 24 38.5N long 119 18.4E on Nov 2. Crew rescued from lifeboat. (Sat. Nov. 4 2000)

The Panamanian-registered cargo ship M/V Manila Spirit sank during Typhoon Xangsane (the storm's name means "elephant" in the Thai language) off Taiwan's northeastern Sanhao Point on the northeast coast & only 1 of the 24-member crew had been found. One crew member swam to shore and was in hospital. The sailor, Tahar, who like many Indonesians uses one name, told reporters at a hospital that the ship broke into 3 pieces after being hit by very strong winds. Two helicopter searches failed to turn up any more survivors and a rescue ship had been sent to the area. Xangsane, which left Taiwan on Nov. 1, dumped rain on Taiwan for 3 days causing landslides and flash floods that killed at least 53 people. (Thurs. Nov. 2 2000)

The Malaysian container M/V Bunga Terati Satu, Singapore for Sydney, carrying an unspecified dangerous cargo ran aground on Australia's World Heritage-listed Great Barrier Reef today, but there were no reports of pollution. The 184-metre (603-feet) vessel ran aground in int'l waters on Sudbury Reef, 50 km (31 miles) east of Cairns in Australia's tropical north. Some chemicals are on board & 1,300 tons of fuel. Attempts to refloat the ship had been put off until divers could further assess the extent of damage to the ship's hull. The ship had suffered damage to at least the port side of its hull. It was resting above water on the reef and was believed to have suffered substantial damage to its hull. Port ballast tanks, which had been emptied, were reported to be full of water. The vessel is owned by Malaysian Int'l Shipping Corp Bhd. Australia's Great Barrier Reef Marine Park covers the biggest coral structure in the world. Home to complex coral reef systems, dugong habitats, seabird nesting colonies, reef systems, rocky headlands and sandy beaches, it runs almost 2,000 km (1,250 miles) from near Papua New Guinea down Australia's northeast coast. The Marine Park, set up in 1975 to protect the reefs, is the largest in the world. (Thurs. Nov. 2 2000)

Italian chemical tanker M/V IEVOLI SUN (4,189 tons gross, built 1989) sank in lat 49 26W long 04 05W on Oct 30. 14 crew recovered from vessel. Manifest show 6,000 tons of dangerous chemicals. "Styrene that has escaped from a forward storage tank,'' said Shell France managing director, referring to the hydrocarbon -- a recognized pollutant -- used for making synthetic plastics. Officials threw a 4 km (4 miles) exclusion zone around the site. Surveillance flights reported an iridescent film 700 by 10 yards spreading from the wreck site. The ship is about 200 to 250 feet below the surface. Plan may be to raise the vessel. (Wed. Nov, 1 2000) UPDATE >> Initial results from air & water samples taken at the site of the M/V IEVOLI SUN that sank in the English Channel show no presence of a highly toxic chemical that was feared to have leaked into the water. (Thurs. Nov. 2 2000)

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Vessel Loss Dispatches For October 2000

M/V Grandeur of the Seas, a Royal Caribbean Int'l cruise ship carrying 2,040 passengers, lost electrical power on Tues. & being towed to Curacao, off the coast of Venezuela. Emergency generators had restored air conditioning, plumbing & lighting aboard Grandeur by late morning, about 4-1/2 hours after the outage began some 7.5 miles (12 km) from Curacao. Tugboats have been dispatched to tow Grandeur, at sea since leaving San Juan, Puerto Rico, on Sat., to Willemstad on the Dutch island of Curacao. Repair staff were being flown to Curacao to help crew aboard the 74,410-ton vessel. (Tues. Oct. 31 2000)

In the worst English Channel area storm since 1987, the 33-year-old skipper of the Dutch-registered vessel M/V Almenum was killed after falling into the ship's hold as it was tossed on heavy seas as it anchored off Torbay on Oct. 29 evening. Offshore, 6 ferries were forced to seek shelter in a bay on the southeast coast of England after gale-force winds & high seas made docking unsafe at Dover. By late Monday afternoon, all but one ferry had docked, allowing about 4,300 shaken passengers to disembark. (Mon. Oct. 30 2000)

The 14-man crew of the Italian tanker M/T Ievoli Sun was evacuated by helicopter on Oct. 29 after the ship sank off Brittany's Ile d'Ouessant. Rescuers spotted a pool of chemicals from the cargo polluting the waters around the ship. (Mon. Oct. 30 2000)

The Luxembourg-registered M/T Manuella stranded in heavy seas off northern France has taken advantage of a lull in stormy weather to head toward a British port. Manuella & it's 9c rew ran into problems soon after leaving the port of Boulogne late Oct. 28. Initial attempts by 2 tugs to tow it away from the coast & out to sea failed. The 109-meter (363 feet) tanker had managed to push clear of shore under its own power thanks to a break in the weather this afternoon. The Manuella's tanks were empty & no threat of an oil spill. A 2nd vessel that ran into problems late yesterday, the Cyprus-registered M/V Krems carrying a cargo of salt, was being towed to the French port of Le Havre. France is highly sensitive about the dangers of shipwrecks after the Maltese-registered oil tanker M/T Erika broke in half in stormy seas off Brittany in Dec. last year, spewing up to 15,000 tons of oil onto the rocky shoreline. The environmental disaster wrecked local tourism, killed tens of thousands of sea birds & forced almost all sea salt producers and oyster farms in the area to close until they were sure there was no more risk of pollution. (Sun. Oct. 29 2000)

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23 Oct. 2000 at 1245 LT in position: 13:20N - 042:58E, 17 nm off Ras Fatuna (Eriteira), Southern Red Sea. Four pirates in a speedboat tried to board a general cargo ship. The persons inside were armed with swords & other weapons. The ship took evasive action, sounded whistle, mustered the crew and activated fire hoses. On seeing the crew alertness, the boat retreated. (Fri. Oct. 27 2000)

23. Oct. 2000 at 1000 LT in position: 22:26.55N - 089:35.5E, off Khulna, Bangladesh. About 12 pirates armed with long knives boarded a general cargo ship. The port police onboard fired warning shots in the air. Pirates escaped taking ship's stores & equipment. (Fri. Oct. 27 2000)

22. Oct. 2000 at 2330 LT at Chittagong anchorage, Bangladesh. Ten pirates in two unpainted wooden boats approached a RO/RO ship. Alert duty officer raised general alarm & crew mustered on upper deck. As a result the boats retreated. (Fri. Oct. 27 2000)

21 Oct. 2000 at night at anchorage in open sea between Singapore & Indonesia. Eight armed pirates, reportedly Indonesians, attacked a fishing vessel. Master & injured & hospitalized. Further details awaited. (Fri. Oct. 27 2000)

21 Oct. 2000 at 0450 LT at 00:08.1N - 117:34.9E, Bontang, Indonesia. While at anchor 2 pirates armed with knives boarded & locked the seaman on duty inside the crane post. The chief officer raised alarm and pirates fled. (Fri. Oct. 27 2000)

18 Oct. 2000 at Sandakan, Malaysia. While berthed, pirates boarded a tanker & attempted to steal ship's stores. Alert crew repelled the attack. (Fri. Oct. 27 2000)

18 Oct. 2000 at 0500 LT at Kandla, India. While berthed, pirates boarded a tanker & broke open the storeroom at the stern. They stole a large quantity of ship's stores & equipment. Police were informed. (Fri. Oct. 27 2000)

18 Oct. 2000 at 2030 LT at Chennai, India. Six pirates in a speedboat attempted to board a bulk carrier via stern. Alert crew on anti piracy watch foiled the attempted boarding. (Fri. Oct. 27 2000)

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Going Home >> The damaged USS Cole will be loaded onto a Norwegian ``heavy lift'' M/V Blue Marlin under contract to the U.S. Navy in the Gulf of Aden on Oct. 30 for transport to the US. Blue Marlin, which normally is used to lift & transport commercial cargo such as oil rigs, is expected to arrive in the Gulf of Aden, off the coast of Yemen, on Sunday from the Dubai, where it was outfitted for the job. The Navy signed the US$4.5M contract with the Blue Marlin's owner, Offshore Heavy Transport of Oslo, Norway, just a few days after the Cole was attacked while refueling in Aden, Yemen, on Oct. 12. The schedule calls for the Blue Marlin to take the crippled Cole onto its deck in a process that will take at least 24 hours. The Cole has a hole in the port side estimated at 40 Ft. wide & 40 Ft. high. The explosion killed 17 sailors, wounded 39 & tore much of the midsection of the ship to shreds of metal & wire. Most of the crew of about 300 has remained aboard the 8,300-ton ship since the attack. A small number will stay aboard for the voyage back to the U.S.; the rest will be flown home. (Fri. Oct. 27 2000) Read The Full Story

Oct 25 >> SUB Kursk DOWN UPDATE: Oct 25 (Intial Reports below) >> Laboring in the frigid murk of the Barents Sea on Oct. 24, divers found & removed the 1st bodies from the wreckage of the sunken nuclear submarine Kursk. The bodies of 3 crew were found several hours after 2 Russian divers entered the submarine, where 118 sailors died on Aug. 12. The remains were taken from the wreckage. A team consisting of one U.S. diver, one Norwegian diver, one South African, & 10 British divers -- the rest being Russian divers worked for 5 days to enter the submarine. The bodies were found after the team finished cutting the 1st hole in the thick double hull of the Kursk. There is virtually no chance of recovering all the dead, as all were probably pulverized by a massive explosion that tore through the Kursk. (Wed. Oct. 25 2000) READ OUR ORIGINAL COVERAGE

Oct 24 >> SUB Kursk DOWN UPDATE: Oct 24 Rising winds & high seas halted divers' attempts Oct. 23 to cut into the sunken Kursk nuclear submarine & remove remains of the crew. Winds of 56 mph were buffeting the M/V Regalia mother ship, which serves as the HQ for retrieval operation. Divers working on the dangerous operation are attached to the Regalia by tethers, & risk being jerked about if the storm intensifies. Deep-sea divers were working for a 4th day to recover any remains of the 118 seamen who died when the vessel was ripped by explosion & sank. The divers hope to cut 7 holes through both hulls around the mangled submarine to pull out bodies or body parts. Russian officials have warned that safety concerns - including fears about the Kursk's 2 nuclear reactors & threats to divers from jagged debris - might force the Navy to call off the difficult work 330 feet below. Divers have carved a passage as far as the thick, pressurized inner hull in the 8th compartment, aft. On Oct. 23, divers cut through the 2.5-inch-thick sheet of steel, but had not enlarged the hole enough to enter. Divers over the weekend punched a test hole & found no radiation, oil or air bubbles inside the compartment. Work began to set up equipment for cutting through the outer hull leading to the 7th compartment. The 7th & 8th compartments are packed with mechanical equipment used to power the submarine's 2 screws. The Regalia, normally used for underwater work in Norway's offshore oil industry, was at anchor above the Kursk about 100 miles north of Russia's Arctic Coast. Teams of divers have been working around the clock since Oct. 19, manipulating robot arms & specialized cutting equipment that sprays pressurized water & diamond dust to slice through the submarine's hull. (Tues. Oct. 24 2000) READ OUR ORIGINAL COVERAGE

Some of this history was precdictd by The Cargo Letter back on 15 Aug. 2000. CLICK HERE

United States yacht SEAS THE DAY sank approximately 18 NM Southest of Cape Lookout, NC, USA, on Oct 17. Survivors were flown to U.S. Coast Guard Group Fort Macon in good condition. Coast Guard cutter remains on scene picking up debris. (Tues. Oct. 24 2000)

The freighter M/V Mary Star sunk near Government Cut, Miami, just before Midnight, Oct 22, after reported taking water. All 5 crew rescued by U.S. Coast Guard. (Mon. Oct. 24 2000)

Tamil Tiger rebels in boats carrying explosives launched a suicide attack on a naval base today & shot down an air force helicopter coming to the base's aid. Fourteen people, including 8 rebels, were killed and 43 were injured. A Sri Lankan navy personnel carrier anchored at Trincomalee port where the attack took place was badly damaged & sinking after it was rammed by a rebel boat. Shortly afterward, an MI-24 helicopter coming to the aid of the embattled base was shot down by the rebels 6 miles from Trincomalee & the 2 pilots & 2 gunners are dead. Trincomalee is one of the finest natural harbors in South Asia. The military uses it for transporting troops & material but it is rarely used for commercial trading because of the separatist war. (Mon. Oct. 24 2000)

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16 Oct. 2000 at 0100 UTC in position: 05:45.8N - 096:28.3E, off northern coast of Sumatra, Indonesia. Five speedboats approached a general cargo ship simultaneously from head on & port side. They came within 30m from the ship. Boats were blue in color with white red horizontal stripes. Each boat had two men onboard. Chief officer spotted them and raised alarm and took evasive action by altering course. Crew mustered at poop deck & near port gangway. After ten minutes, the boats retreated. (Sun. Oct. 22 2000)

14 Oct. 2000 at 1930 UTC at Chennai anchorage, India. Four pirates in a speedboat attempted to board a bulk carrier via anchor chain. Due to the alertness of the crew on watch at forecastle deck, the pirates aborted the attempt and fled. (Sun. Oct. 22 2000)

12. Oct. 2000 from 1050 - 1140 LT in position: 12:36N - 043:01.3E, Southern tip of Red Sea. Five high-speed boats with 6 - 7 persons in each boat attempted to board a tanker. The duty officer noticed the boats & raised alarm. Crew mustered on deck and activated fire hoses with jets of water. As a result the boats fled. (Sun. Oct. 22 2000)

12.10.2000 in Int'l waters off east coast of Sri Lanka. A 40 ft fishing boat operated by motor & sail approached a U.S. naval ship. The fishing boat came within 20 ft from the warship & her crew demanded money from the warship's crew. Two persons in the boat appeared to be concealing weapons in their waistbands. The warship's crew displayed small arms & the fishing boat retreated. (Sun. Oct. 22 2000)

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The Liberian tanker M/T Knock Dun that ran aground off Antigua on Oct. 13 the ship has resumed its journey to St. Croix after being re-floated Oct. 19. Antiguan authorities had ordered the vessel held pending a court hearing on damage to a prized coral reef caused by the impact of the tanker when it ran aground on Oct. 13. But officials for Red Band, the Olso company that manages the Knock Dun, said the ship left Antiguan waters on Oct. 20 night after posting a bond with the Antiguan government. (Sat. Oct. 21 2000)

The entire crew of Russian F/V Taifun-1 that sank in freezing, stormy seas early today has been rescued. A life raft carrying the last 8 missing sailors from the sunken Taifun-1 had been found & the crew members were now on board another fishing boat, along with 12 rescued from a life raft earlier in the day. The ship had been out of contact since early morning near the Kurile Islands, north of Japan, when the captain reported that the vessel was listing & in danger of sinking. Heavy winds, rain, snow & choppy seas had hampered rescue efforts. Two of the ship's 6 life rafts were found empty. Japan helped in the rescue, dispatching ng a reconnaissance plane & a patrol boat. (Thurs. Oct. 19 2000)

A Greek sailor died after the Greek-flagged M/V Ytong I, sank Oct. 15 in the latest deadly accident to plague this maritime country. The Ytong I, sank near the north Aegean Sea island of Samothrace, the merchant marine ministry said. Nine other Greek crew members were rescued by a passing Turkish merchant vessel and a navy search operation involving a frigate & 2 helicopters. The sinking was apparently caused by displacement of the ship's cargo of plywood. (Sat. Oct. 16 2000)

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9 Oct. 2000 at 0135 LT in position: 14:36.7N - 120:53.7E, Manila anchorage, Philippines. Eight pirates from an unlit boat boarded a container ship. They broke open forward store & stole ship's stores. Crew noticed them & sounded alarm. As a result the pirates fled. (Sun. Oct. 15 2000)

7 Oct. 2000 at 1330 LT in position: 14:38.64N - 042:03.92E, Red Sea. About 40 pirates in 5 boats attempted to board a tanker. Another ship passing by came to scene to assist the tanker. As a result the pirates aborted the attempted boarding. (Sun. Oct. 15 2000)

6 Oct. 2000 at 0057 LT in position: 22:14.3N -091:44E, Chittagong, Bangladesh. Two boats with six pirates in each approached an offshore supply ship. When crew on deck tried to prevent boarding, the pirates opened fire with their guns injuring 2nd officer. He received wounds to his arms & stomach. General alarm was raised. The pirates stole ship's stores & fled. A naval craft arrived to assist. Injured 2nd officer received medical attention. (Sun. Oct. 15 2000)

5 Oct. 2000 at 2000 UTC at anchor in position: 05:49,2N 118:06.7E, Sandakan, Malaysia. Four pirates armed with knives boarded a tanker. The duty officer raised the alarm and the pirates fled. (Sun. Oct. 15 2000)

5 Oct. 2000 at 1230 LT in position: 06:03.06S -106:53.8E, Jakarta anchorage, Indonesia. Six pirates armed with long knives boarded a container ship from port side. The duty watchmen raised alarm. Pirates stole ship's stores & escaped. (Sun. Oct. 15 2000)

3 Oct. 2000 during night at Chittagong anchorage 'C', Bangladesh. Five pirates boarded a bulk carrier & stole ship's stores. Earlier the same pirates had twice attempted to board. Subsequently a Bangladeshi naval ship anchored close to the area & there were no further attempts. (Sun. Oct. 15 2000)

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The Master of the Antiguan flagged cargo vessel M/V Maria D informed Dover Coastguard the vessel had broken down on Oct. 13 due to gearbox problems & was drifting from a position around 10 miles S.E. of Hastings. The vessel is 2370 Gross Tons, 87.5 meters in length, has a beam of 12.8 meters and is carrying a cargo of scrap & 74,000 litres of gas oil as fuel. Maria D dropped anchor & Dover Coastguard tasked the Coastguard Emergency Towing Vessel (ETV) M/V Far Turbot to the scene to stand by. (Sat. Oct. 14 2000)

A seaman died today when the Greek-flagged freighter M/V Ytong 1, with wooden planks, Porto Lagos in northern Greece for Izmir in Turkey, listed & started sinking in choppy seas off the northern Aegean island of Samothrace. The seaman was injured, and later died of his injuries, when the crew of 8 & 1 passemger abandoned ship. Cargo movement was the likely cause for the freighter listing. It ran into choppy seas about 15 NM southeast of the island of Samothrace, near Int'l waters. A nearby Turkish vessel sped to rescue the crew when it abandoned ship. A Greek frigate, 3 helicopters & 3 Coast Guard boats also raced to the scene to assist. (Sat. Oct. 14 2000)

An unidentified M/V cargo vessel in collision with a rickety boat carrying Haitian immigrants late last night off the Bahamas,about 350 miles N.W. of Haiti, killing at least 10 people & leaving another 18 missing. Crew of the cargo ship rescued 87 Haitians as their 45-foot boat sank following the collision at 1 a.m. Wed. near Staniel Cay, about 50 miles N.W. of Great Exuma island, the Bahamas Defense Force said. The cargo ship's crew said they did not see the Haitian boat in the dark because it had no lights. Divers retrieved the bodies of 10 Haitians on Thurs, & planned to resume their search Fri. A Defense Force ship sent to retrieve the survivors intercepted 2 other Haitian boats, one carrying 23 people & the other carrying 10. (Thurs. Oct. 12 2000)

FROM THE PAST >>> The U.S. Senate voted today to exonerate 2 American military commanders accused of dereliction of duty in the 1941 bombing of Pearl Harbor & urged that the President posthumously reverse their demotion in rank. On a tumultuous day that brought a deadly attack on a U.S. Navy ship in the Middle East, the measure -- included in a defense spending bill -- revisited the circumstances of the surprise Japanese attack that occurred 59 years ago. The legislation seeks to reverse the demotions handed Adm. Husband E. Kimmel & Gen. Walter Short, the 2 senior commanders of U.S. military forces in the Pacific when Pearl Harbor was attacked Dec. 7, 1941. The House passed the measure yesterday. (Thurs. Oct. 12 2000)

ALERT! >>> UPDATED Oct. 17 PM >>> USS Cole (DDG-67) in port Aden on the Arabian Peninsula was attacked Oct. 12 from a small inflatable boat in a terrorist act by suicide bombers that killed 17 Americans & injured more than 36, 5 seriously.

UPDATE of 17 Oct. : In all, 17 sailors were killed in what U.S. officials believe was a terrorist suicide attack on the Cole. Five bodies were recovered last week & were flown back to the United States. Two other bodies had been spotted aboard the ship last week but could not be removed due to the extreme damage caused by the bomb. In addition, there were 10 whom the Navy presumed had been killed but could not be found. The recovery of 7 bodies Tuesday left 5 others to be accounted for.

Women sailors were among the casualties. The registry of the boat was not immediately known, but it was apparently providing assistance to the Cole which was along side a refueling bouy. The 505 ft. Arleigh Burke Class "Aegis" (air defense) destroyer, one of the world's most advanced warships, with a crew of about 350 sailors, was in port at Aden, Yemen, for brief refueling when the small craft came alongside the ship. According to witnesses, the 2 civilians aborad suddenly stood to attention -- an explosion followed. Details of the incident remain sketchy, but officials at the Pentagon said it appeared that the small boat was carrying some form of high-explosive powerful enough to rip a large hole -- 40 feet by 40 feet flooding the main engine spaces. The Cole is a US$1B guided missile destroyer home-ported at Norfolk, Va. It had sailed through the Red Sea & was en route to the Persian Gulf where it was to perform maritime intercept operations in support of the U.N. embargo against Iraq as part the battle group of the carrier USS George Washington << link. The ship is named after Marine Sgt. Darrell S. Cole, a machine gunner killed in action on Iwo Jima on Feb. 19, 1945. That was the day 30,000 Marines landed on the southeast coast of the Japanese-held island. The ship's motto is "Determined Warrior." >> VISIT >> USS Cole (DDG-67) homepage (Thurs. Oct. 12 2000)

>>> Photo Feature >> Our prayers today remain for the crew & familes of USS Cole (DDG-67) See Oct. 12, below. Plese visit our photo feature on the USS Cole including dramatic photos and eye witness accounts. CLICK HERE

The Panamanian-registered M/T Natuna Sea, Saudi Arabia for China, grounded Oct. 3 about five miles southeast of Singapore, spilling oil 2 million gallons of crude that washed up onto beaches off Singapore. No one aboard the ship was injured. The tanker was successfully refloated today but could continue to leak. Oil believed to be from the Natuna polluted the country's southern Pengerang beach, with one slick stretching over 12 miles in surrounding waters. On Thurs, dozens of technicians in 6 tugs refloated the tanker as helicopters hovered above. Ruptures in the ship's hull have not been repaired Cleanup was expected to take 3 to 4. The remaining oil from the Natuna Sea was transferred to other ships. (Thurs. Oct. 12 2000)

The Italian navy rescued 461 would-be immigrants, including 128 children, found adrift on rusty freighter M/V Diler in stormy seas off Italy's southern coast. Rescuers towed the ship to the port of Otranto, where scores of the passengers required treatment for dehydration. Most of those aboard the freighter were ethnic Kurds from Iraq. Palestinians, Afghanis, Syrians and Indians also were on board. The navy received a distress signal from the vessel & boarded the ship a few miles off shore. Authorities later arrested 5 Turks. Officials said they suspected the five were the vessel's captain & crew and that they tried to hide among the passengers. The Diler, left the Turkish port of Izmir 8 days ago. The passengers said they had little food, water or protection from the cold. People-smuggling is a serious problem along Italy's coast, with smugglers charging refugees - mainly from Kosovo, Turkey & North Africa - large sums for the journey. Kurds who ask for asylum typically are released while Italy considers their request, allowing them to head toward job markets elsewhere in Europe. (Thurs. Oct. 12 2000)

The Philippine M/V Super Ferry 6, General Santos City in the southern Philippines for Manila, saw 700 passengers rescued early Thurs. after a fire broke out on the upper deck. Some on board jumped into the ocean to escape & were picked up by other vessels. Most were transferred to another ship. There were no immediate reports of any serious injuries. A plane passing Batangas south of Manila said that smoke was still coming from the Super Ferry 6, but company officials said the fire was under control. The cause of the fire was not immediately known. Sea disasters are frequent in the Philippines, an archipelago where the main form of inter-island transportation is often rickety & dilapidated ferries. In one of the world's worst peacetime shipping disaster, the Philippine ferry M/V Dona Paz collided with a tanker on Dec. 20, 1987, killing 4,341. (Wed. Oct. 11 2000)

The Captain of Singapore-registered M/T Neptune Dorado oil tanker that arrived in the San Francisco Bay with safety violations, including oil leaks, was charged on today with falsifying documents & lying to Coast Guard inspectors. The Greek Captain was arrested over the weekend after his Neptune Dorado was found with oil in the ship's ballast tanks. If ignited, vapours from the oil could have caused the ship to explode, officials said. Ballast tanks are only supposed to hold water, in order to stabilise a ship, but the tanks on Neptune Dorado contained more than 500 tons of crude oil, according to court documents, which called it a "serious safety hazard." The ship's cargo of more than 500,000 barrels of Australian Cossack crude oil had not been unloaded at Tosco Corp.'s Rodeo oil refinery as scheduled. Tosco officials were not available for comment. The tanker arrived in the Bay on Sept. 23 & was due to unload at the Rodeo oil refinery. Oil product traders said the delayed delivery could be contributing to higher wholesale fuel prices for Northern California. Charged with lying in the ship's logs & to the Coast Guard, Kiriakos Daioglou is scheduled for a Thurs. hearing in U.S. District Court in San Francisco. For more on this story see Oct. 3 (Tues. Oct. 10 2000)

Forty-four years after it was thrown from a ship into the Indian Ocean, a bottle with a message has turned up in New Zealand not far from the home of the author. Austrian Hans Schwarz, now 66, wrote the message in English & German while sailing to Australia in 1956 to attend the Melbourne Olympics. The note -- including a line about "looking for a Pacific woman" -- was found by a man living around 70 km north of Wellington, where Schwarz now lives. Where it was found & the contents of the message have not been revealed because the finder, who was not named, has signed an exclusive media deal, the newspapers reported. Schwarz, who got a phone call from the finder, was surprised the bottle turned up at all, particularly as he dispatched the message without realizing that the continent of Australia lay between his ship & the Pacific. "It's a million-to-one may have landed up somewhere in southern Chile or a Pacific Island & then been washed away again," he told reporters. Schwarz visited New Zealand after the 1956 Olympics & then returned to Austria. But 5 years later he headed back permanently, saying he missed the "easy-going lifestyle in New Zealand." (Tues. Oct. 10 2000)

A barge on the Columbia River capsized on the afternoon of Oct. 6, spilling a load of debris into the water. Stiff winds & heavy waves breaking against the secured vessel caused it to list and take on water around 4 p.m. near the I-5 bridge south of Hayden Island. Several large drums of paint debris, equipment & a 5,000-gallon drum of fuel fell off into the river. The fuel drum floated away, but was recovered. The ship was part of a repainting work project. Crews from the Portland Fire Bureau & Foss Environmental Services are working to assess possible environmental damage. A Coast Guard helicopter is also on the scene. No one was aboard the ship & no injuries were reported. River traffic and traffic on the bridge are reportedly unaffected. About 250 gallons of diesel fuel leaked into the river from two pieces of heavy machinery. A crane barge & a team of divers will try to retrieve the drums of leaded paint, which officials believe were still sealed. (Mon. Oct. 9 2000)

The Maltese M/V OBOD (13,607 gross), Masan for Miami, reported drifting about 1,000 miles east of the Hawaiian Islands Oct 6. Tug Master Cody proceeding. Vessel will be towed to Balboa. (Sun. Oct. 8 2000)

The Norwegian M/V SUNNMORE (2,706 gross), Kvinesdal for Egersund, grounded outside Kvinesdal today. Sustained water ingress. Refloated & anchored at Kvina Verft, near Kvinesdal, awaiting inspection. (Fri. Oct. 6 2000)

The Russian M/V SALMI (1,778 gross) & the Belgium trailing suction hopper dredger M/V JADE RIVER (4,284 gross) were in collision at Westerschelde Buoy No.64A on Oct 4. Salmi sustained damage to starboard side above waterline & anchored near Buoy 69. She may return to Antwerp for repairs. Jade River is proceeding to Antwerp. (Wed. Oct. 4 2000)

Pirates killed the 9 man crew of a Bangladeshi fishing boat and made off with its nets & engine. The decomposed bodies of the victims were found on board the vessel floating in the Bay of Bengal today. The bodies bore multiple injuries, reports said without elaborating. (Wed. Oct. 4 2000)

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On 2 Oct. 2000 at 2330 LT in position: 02:21.6N - 101:41E, 10 nm from Tg. Tuan, Malacca straits. An attempt to board a container ship was foiled by alert crew. (Tues. Oct. 3 2000)

On 1 Oct. 2000 at 0250 LT in position: 01:57.5N - 102:15.0E, Malacca Straits. While underway, pirates armed with guns & long knives boarded a container ship. They initially took C/O as hostage. They then used his master key & entered the cabins of Master, C/E & C/cook and took them hostage. They robbed their cash & personal valuables. They also stole ship's stores & cash from ship's safe. Pirates left the ship at 0325 LT in a speedboat. (Tues. Oct. 3 2000)

1 Oct. 2000 at 0210 LT in position: 16:38.77N - 096:15.56E at new explosive anchorage, Yangon River, Myanmar. Pirates in a small boat tried to board a container ship from port side. Duty A/B observed them & raised the alarm. Pirates fled towards the new container terminal. (Tues. Oct. 3 2000)

1 Oct. 2000 at 0200 LT at Dumai port anchorage, Indonesia. Four pirates armed with knives in a small-motorised wooden boat boarded a tanker. Duty officer raised the alarm & pirates fled. (Tues. Oct. 3 2000)

1 Oct.2000 at 0140 LT in position: 01:55.2N -102:22.5E Malacca Straits. Five pirates in a speedboat attempted to board a general cargo ship. Alert crew foiled the attempt. (Tues. Oct. 3 2000)

1 Oct. 2000 at 0130 LT in position: 01:13.15N - 103:34.39E, Singapore Western OPL anchorage. About 21 pirates (suspected by the master to be Indonesians) boarded a bulk carrier with daggers & pistols. They overpowered the crew who were asleep, tied their hands at the back & taped their mouths. The pirates then ransacked all parts of the ship including cabins. They robbed cash & personal belongings of the crew. They also took a list of ship's particulars. The pirates then enquired about the nature of the cargo & asked the master to start the engines. It seems the pirates had planned to hijack the ship. This was averted as the ship's engines were dismantled for repairs! (Tues. Oct. 3 2000)

29 Sept. 2000 at 0420 LT in position 01:54.7N - 102:13.4E, Malacca Straits. Pirates in a boat attempted to board a container ship underway. Crew on anti piracy watch raised the alarm. The master took evasive action by altering course. Pirates continued their attempt to board for 10 minutes & finally gave up. The incident was reported to Malaysian Marine Police via Klang VTIS. (Tues. Oct. 3 2000)

28 Sept. 2000 at 1158 UTC at Tema anchorage, Ghana. Pirates attempted to board a container ship from a small wooden boat while crew were preparing to heave up anchor. Crew on anti piracy watch saw them & chased them away. Another attempt was made by the pirates & one of them tried to board the ship via hawse pipe. Alert crew saw the pirate & raised alarm. The pirates fled leaving behind a 50 cm knife. The incidents were reported to port control. (Tues. Oct. 3 2000)

28 Sept. 2000 at 1045 LT in position: 05:23.4S - 106:57.2E, Indonesia. Pirates in small speedboat approached a ship from port quarter at speed of 21 knots. Duty officer raised the alarm & anti piracy crew were stationed at forward & aft. The boat followed the ship for 25 minutes before abandoning the attempt. (Tues. Oct. 3 2000)

28 Sept. 2000 at 0030 LT in position: 13:05.0N - 080:21.3E at Chennai anchorage, India. Pirates with knives boarded a bulk carrier. The duty A/B reported to bridge via walkie-talkie & the duty officer raised the alarm. The pirates jumped overboard & escaped. The incident was reported to port control & a police patrol boat arrived to investigate. (Tues. Oct. 3 2000)

27 Sept. 2000 at 1800 LT in position: 00:30.0N - 108:07E, Indonesia. A fast powered boat (white hull) with a speed of 22 knots with 10 pirates attempted to board a tanker from stern. The alarm was raised & the boat disappeared in the direction of Pulau Pengikik. (Tues. Oct. 3 2000)

26 Sept. 2000 at 0405 LT in position: 01:15.6N - 104:54.5E, Indonesia. Ten to 15 pirates in a speedboat attempted to board a tanker from starboard quarter. Crew alertness & use of searchlights prevented boarding. (Tues. Oct. 3 2000)

25 Sept. 2000 at 0230 LT in position: 01:40N - 106: 18E, off Indonesia. Pirates boarded & hijacked an oil tanker en route from port Dickson to Kuching. The crew were held captives & the tanker was taken to an unknown destination. Pirates stole about 2,200 metric tons of cargo of gas oil by transferring it to another ship. Pirates left the tanker somewhere near OPL Singapore around 0600 LT on 26.9.00 & the crew regained control. (Tues. Oct. 3 2000)

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The 55,000 ton luxury liner M/V Veendam about 20 miles off the Oregon coast with 1,700 people aboard lost electricity for about 3 hours, causing passenger inconveniences but no major problems. An electrical generator failed on the Veendam, leaving the ship without heating, cooling, lighting, ventilation, or running water. The 720-foot Holland America Line ship, bound for San Diego, was never in danger and that an auxiliary power system provided electricity when the main power failed. (Tues. Oct. 3 2000)

The U.S. Coast Guard today gave the Singapore oil tanker M/T Neptune Dorado until 6 p.m. to vacate the San Francisco Bay after finding "severe" safety & pollution violations, but said it may allow it to deliver its cargo, under supervision, to a Tosco Corp. refinery. Coast Guard called the vessel a safety & environmental threat after boarding Neptune Dorado over the weekend & finding fuel oil leaks in the engine & other safety violations. It gave the tanker, which held 580,000 barrels of Indonesian crude, until late Tues. to leave the Bay unless safety problems were fixed. Coast Guard spokesmen said 30 major operational defects had been repaired, & U.S. officials might allow the ship to deliver the oil with strict oversight. (Tues. Oct. 3 2000)

The Panamanian tanker M/T NATUNA SEA (51,095 gross), from Persian Gulf with crude oil, grounded off Batu Berhanti Beacon, in lat 01 11.31N, long 103 53.10E, Oct 3. Four cargo tanks damaged. About 7,000 tonnes crude oil spilled. Salvors on scene. (Tues. Oct. 3 2000)

The Turkish registered M/V Canakkale carryiny wood capsized & sank off the Portuguese coast today. A Portuguese Navy statement said the Canakkale began to take on water while leaving Port of Aveiro because its cargo of 878 tons was unevenly distributed. A pilot launch rescued the 8 crew members after they abandoned ship. A tug then towed the 71 meter Cannakkale 1 mile offshore before the vessel sank. A lifeboat evacuated the captain. (Tues. Oct. 3 2000)

The Saint Vincent & Grenadines M/V Eurobulker IV carrying coal broke up & sank off the coast of Sardinia on Mon., nearly a month after it ran aground. Eurobulker IV was still holding some 14,000 tons of its original 17,000 tons of coal when it split in two & sank after 2 days of strong winds. The ship's 16-member crew was evacuated when the tanker ran aground on September 8 off Portovesme. Operations to remove the cargo were halted on Sun. because of bad weather. See also Sept. 8. (Tues. Oct. 3 2000)

The U.S. Supreme Court refused to free Exxon Mobil Corp. from having to pay US$5B in damages for the 1989 M/T Exxon Valdez oil spill in Alaska, the nation's worst ever. The nation's highest court, acting without comment today, let stand the award stemming from the tanker spill that polluted more than 1,000 miles of shoreline, killed tens of thousands of birds & marine mammals and disrupted fishing. The oil company still has a variety of other appeals pending, & the high court action does not obligate the company to pay anything right away, said company spokesmen. In this appeal, lawyers for Exxon Mobil had urged the justices to throw out the punitive-damages award on grounds of irregularities during jury deliberations. (Mon. Oct. 2 2000)

>> It Has Happened Again! >>> An elderly American died after the chartered M/V Zeus Three, grounded & sank off the island of Naxos. Thirty, mostly American, passengers & 7 crew survived the ordeal. Zeus Three sank in relatively calm seas not far from the holiday island of Paros where the M/V Express Samina sank last Tues, killing at least 77 people in gale force winds. Some 452 people were rescued from Express Samina but officials fear that the death toll in Greece's worst maritime disaster in 35 years will rise as divers explore deeper into the wreck, notably the car deck. In a 3rd incident, early Fri, the ferry M/V Express Artemis ran aground near the port of Naxos with 1,081 passengers on board. No one was hurt but the 2 ferry incidents spurred the Greek government Sat. to confine 65 cruise ships & ferry boats to port for failing to meet safety requirements. See also M/V Express Samina for Sept. 26, below. (Sun. Oct. 1 2000)

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Vessel Loss Dispatches For September 2000

The German-registered 4,113 dwt general cargo M/V Graneborg & the 1,430 dwt Bahamas-registered general cargo M/V Geta were in collision, before 3 p.m. (1300 GMT) in sunny conditions with clear visibility off Sweden's Baltic coast. Geta is limping towards the southern Swedish port of Karlskrona as military salvage vessel M/V Belos used heavy-duty pumping gear in a desperate struggle to keep it afloat. There were still no reports of injuries. A helicopter in the area had reported no signs of any cargo in the sea, but Geta was holed below the water line & is listing heavily. There was no immediate explanation for the crash. Three of the Geta's 6 crew had been taken onto one of several vessels that rushed to the scene in response to its radio SOS message, & the remaining 3 are still on board with the engines running. (Fri. Sept. 29 2000)

The former Soviet aircraft carrier Minsk's has arrived at Shenzhen, China & looms ominously over a harbor full of traditional Chinese fishing boats. The pride of the Soviet Union's Pacific Fleet during the Cold War, the Minsk is now an amusement park, its decks crammed with carnival attractions & souvenir booths. Stripped of armaments, engines & communications equipment, its only working weapons are coin-operated machine guns loaded with BB pellets which visitors can fire at balloons. The Minsk was sold for scrap in 1995 to South Korea, which sold it on to China in 1998. When the 43,000-ton Kiev class vessel reached Shenzhen, some defense analysts & Hong Kong newspapers noted that China has long coveted an aircraft carrier to extend its military reach. But Minsk World seems harmless enough, even if many of the military trappings of the 20 year old ship are still there, such as 2 retired MiG-23 fighter jets, replicas of antisubmarine missiles & long-range antiship missiles. The gloomy hangar is enlivened by Russian female performers posing like James Bond girls, & tourists screaming in virtual spacecraft. There's a shopping complex & a display of Chinese tanks & anti-aircraft guns. (Thurs. Sept 28 2000)

The United States research vessel M/V JOE G. JR. (291 gross) grounded on rocks in lat 29 03N, long 90 20W, Sep 23. Various tanks holed. Still aground. Salvors pumping out bunkers. (Wed. Sept. 27 2000)

Greenpeace activists unsuccessfully tried to board a tanker M/T PECOS filled with a million barrels of crude oil, then followed the 900-foot vessel as it made its way toward port. The U.S. Coast Guard joined the convoy to ensure the confrontation didn't end with an oil spill. Five activists left Greenpeace's ship M/V Arctic Sunrise, on small inflatable boats to meet up with the Pecos, contracted by British Petroleum Amoco to deliver Argentine oil to a terminal in Long Beach. The Pecos' deck was too high above the waterline for the activists to board. Coast Guard boats kept the activists at least 100 yards from the tanker. Activists broke the law by interfering with a ship's passage, but it is not known if anyone would be charged. (Wed. Sept. 27 2000)

The 345-foot, 4,407-ton Greek ferry M/V Express Samina struck a patch of rocks in the Aegean Sea & sank, killing at least 66 of the more than 500 people aboard. Many of the victims panicked & jumped off the boat. The ship's captain & 4 crew members were arrested after the accident Tues. night, amid reports at least some of them were watching a soccer match on T.V. at the time. Government officials accused them of criminal negligence, & survivors criticized the shipping company for complete disorganization. "You have to be blind not to see it," said Coast Guard chief Andreas Sirigos. "It is inexplicable how the ship collided with a well-known rock that carries a light visible from a distance of 7 miles." At least 443 people were rescued, including 4 Americans There were also passengers from Britain, France, Germany, Italy & Norway. Many of the dead were young children, who were not required to be counted on the passenger list. A port official suffered a heart attack & died after hearing news of the sinking. The 34-year-old Express Samina was on its daily meandering route through the Aegean Sea with -- tourists heading for holiday isles, residents heading home, army conscripts returning to military bases from leaves. The ship left Athens' port of Piraeus at 5 p.m. Tues. headed for Paros, the 1st of 6 stops that would eventually bring it to the tiny Lipsis islands near the Turkish coast. About 10 p.m., ferry rammed into the Portes islet, a large rocky outcrop near Paros harbor that is marked on maritime charts & has a navigation light. A small flotilla of fishing boats rushed to the scene, followed by dozens of other vessels & British Navy helicopters. But rescue efforts were hampered by gale-force winds. British helicopters rescued at least 12 people, clinging to rocks in the swelling seas & took them aboard the HMS Invincible for treatment. They were suffering from cold, shock and minor cuts & bruises. The causes of the crash were not immediately known, but Justice Minister Michalis Stathopoulos said the accident was caused by "criminal negligence." Results of a preliminary investigation indicated that captain Vassilis Yannakis was not on his bridge -- see Sun. 1 Oct - above. (Tues Sept. 26 2000)

Dominican Republic fishing vessel F/V CRISTAL sank in stormy waters off Haiti Sep 21. Twenty-seven people believed to have drowned. (Mon. Sept. 25 2000)

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25 Sept. 2000 at 0130 LT at Manila Bay anchorage, Philippines. 3 pirates boarded a container ship. The duty A/B noticed them & sounded the general alarm. The pirates jumped overboard and fled with some of the ship's equipment. (Mon. Sept. 25 2000)

24 Sept. 2000 at 1810 UTC in position: 01:17.0N - 104:57.8E, off Indonesia. 6 pirates armed with long knives boarded a container ship from starboard side. One crewmember was robbed of cash & personal valuables. Alarm was raised & the pirates escaped. (Sun. Sept. 24 2000)

24 Sept. 2000 at 0300 LT at Sandakan, Malaysia. While loading, pirates armed with knives were seen by duty patrol trying to open the paint locker of a bulk carrier. 12 other pirates waited in 2 boats tied to the anchor chain. The duty officer fired rocket flares at them & the pirates fled. A 2nd attempt to board was also foiled due to crew alertness. (Sun. Sept. 24 2000)

24 Sept. 2000 at 0230 LT at Samarinda, Muara Berau, Indonesia. Pirates boarded a bulk carrier & stole a life raft. (Sun. Sept. 24 2000)

23 Sept. 2000 between 0045 - 0107 LT, NW Kalimantan, Indonesia. While underway, a large craft amidst fishing boats in the vicinity approached a LPG carrier from the port quarter. The craft switched on searchlights & ordered on VHF to stop engine. Persons in the craft said they were customs & wanted to board. When asked to identify, the craft replied 9yk. The LPG carrier activated anti piracy watch & contacted the IMB piracy-reporting center, which advised her not to stop. After unsuccessful tries, the craft switched off lights, turned around & moved in the opposite direction. (Sat. Sept. 23 2000)

22 Sept. 2000 at 0130 LT in position: 01:51.5N - 102:20E, Malacca Straits. While underway pirates armed with guns & long knives boarded a tanker & took hostage 2 crew on anti piracy watch. They tried to enter the accommodation but the doors were locked. They tried to break the bridge door but were unable to gain access. An Indonesian crew negotiated with the pirates & got the 2 hostages released. On the way they stole ship's equipment. (Fri.. Sept. 22 2000)

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A Colombian man who had hidden in a cargo container aboard the German-flagged M/V CC Antartico that sailed from his homeland to the port of Miami -- -- died & 2 other stowaways are being sent back to the South American country. Authorities did not know why the men had become stowaways aboard the ship for the dangerous trip, speculating that they had sought to become illegal immigrants. The container had no ventilation, bathroom or water -- which proved fatal for one of the stowaways. (Sat. Sept. 23 2000)

The Cyprus M/V OSTKAP (5,600 gross), from Sorel, lost steering & grounded about 33 miles west of Cornwall Island Sep 20. Refloated same day & proceeded to Snell for inspection. (Sat. Sept. 23 2000)

>>>>> NOTE: Today Was Date of Temporary Site Closure For OUr Holland Trip. All Stored Data Is Above.

The South Korean M/V IL SHIN (3,881 gross), Busan for Tsukumi, dragged anchor & grounded on rocks off Sogodo Island, in about lat 35 04.7N, long 128 43E, during Typhoon Saomai Sep 16. Sustained heavy bottom damage & various tanks holed. Large amount of oil spilled into sea. Still aground. (Thurs. Sept. 21 2000)

Unknown attackers fired a ''small missile'' at the headquarters of Britain's MI-6 intelligence agency in central London late Wed., causing an explosion on the 8th floor. The blast caused limited damage at the 10-story structure at the heart of Britain's intelligence abroad. MI-6, formed in 1921, is responsible for foreign intelligence. The high-tech spy headquarters bristles with security features. Much of the complex is below street level to protect the most sensitive areas from terrorist attacks. This is not maritime news, but you won't read it anywhere eslse -- so we told you. (Wed. Sept. 20 2000)

The Gibraltar tanker M/T WESTGATE (2,072 gross), Immingham for Belfast with oil, contacted the Cloghan Jetty, Belfast Harbor, Sept. 18. Sustained damage to fore part. Berthed Belfast same day. Survey under way. (Tues. Sept. 19 2000)

M/V HARMONY DOVE (10,415 gt, built 1976) struck breakwater while entering Abidjan port/Vridi canal on Sept. 17. Currently anchored at the inner lagoon awaiting discharge berth. Underwater damage suspected. (Mon. Sept. 18 2000)

The United Kingdom ro-ro ferry M/V EUROPEAN LEADER (12,879 gross), Dublin for LIverpool w/ passengers, grounded on soft sand in the Crosby Channel, in lat 58 30N, long 03 05W, Sep 17. Refloated same day & escorted to Gladstone Dock, Liverpool. No apparent damage. (Sun. Sept. 17 2000)

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On 11 Sept. 2000 at 0328 LT at Bintulu anchorage, Malaysia. 5 pirates armed with long knives & guns boarded a bulk carrier, broke open the forecastle store, & stole ship's stores. They also broke open a life raft & stole food rations and equipment inside. The duty watch spotted the pirates & alerted other crew. The pirates jumped overboard & escaped in a waiting speedboat. (Sat. Sept. 16 2000)

On 09 Sept. 2000 at 0015 LT in position: 02:34.8S - 105:46.30E, Bangka str, Indonesia. Pirates armed with long knives boarded a tanker & held duty officer and A/B as hostages. They then took them to the Master's & Chief engineer's cabins & robbed their cash & personal valuables. The pirates also robbed cash from ship's safe, cash, & personal belongings from other officers. (Sat. Sept. 16 2000)

On 08 Sept. 2000 at 0140 LT at Tg. Priok anchorage, Indonesia. A boat with about 20 pirates came at the stern & 4 pirates boarded a bulk carrier. The ship raised the alarm & crew mustered. The pirates escaped without stealing anything. (Sat. Sept. 16 2000)

On 07 Sept. 2000 at 0315 LT while at anchor at Chittagong Roads Bangladesh. Five pirates armed with long knives boarded a tanker from stern & another 5 pirates remained in the boat. The duty officer raised alarm& alerted the crew. The pirates managed to steal 4 mooring ropes before escaping. Port control was informed & a navy patrol boat was sent to intercept the pirates. (Sat. Sept. 16 2000)

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All 25 crew of the abandoned Liberian-registered bulk carrier M/V Madona were rescued from 2 life rafts by a nearby livestock carrier & are being taken to Colombo. The 33,000 ton, 183-meter long Madona, which was carrying a cargo of cement, issued a distress signal during the afternoon when it was about 200 nautical miles north of the Cocos Islands, in the Indian Ocean, south of Indonesia & west of Australia. Australia's search & rescue organization, AusSAR, diverted the livestock vessel M/V DANNY F.II to the scene & sent an aircraft from Christmas Island. AusSAR said Madona, built in 1982, was understood to be listing heavily with water flooding into a cargo hold. Lloyds said the ship was still afloat, but tilting to port. Weather in the area was poor with winds of up to 33 knots & waves of up to 6 meters. (Sat. Sept. 16 2000)

Premier Cruise Lines of Port Canaveral, Fla., was shut down after its primary lender seized the ships, which had been put up for collateral. M/V Rembrandt & M/V SeaBreeze were seized Thursday in Halifax, & M/V Oceanic was impounded in Nassau in the Bahamas. M/V Big Red Boat III was seized the same day in Cozumel, Mexico. Happy travelers are just crazed. In Halifax, the seizures caused pandemonium on the dock, where confused & irate passengers begged reporters to use their cell phones to call home. Passengers said they had been given 15 minutes to pack & leave the ship. Happy sailing! (Fri. Sept. 15 2000)

The Honduras tanker M/T PLAYBOY 3 (199 tons gross, built 1974) in collision with M/V HERON (12,474 tons gross, built 1977) 20 miles off Sattahip early Sep 14, causing the Playboy 3 to sink & about 200,000 liters of diesel oil to spill onto shore. Eight crew from Playboy 3 rescued; master killed. (Fri. Sept. 15 2000)

Over 250 Iraqi immigrants, mostly women & children, were rescued from an unidentified sinking trawler off the western coast of Cyprus on Sept. 13. Tourists at a luxury hotel in Paphos watched in horror as the immigrants screamed for help & threw themselves from the sinking vessel only 100 yards away. Police said they thought the Iraqis were Lebanon for Italy & suspected the Capt. had abandoned the ship and her passengers. The immigrants had paid around US$4,000 each for the trip. Women & children were rescued 1st, with police launches & a helicopter, by which time the men who had been on board were already in the water, clinging to life rafts as the ship lay on its side. 4 or 5 people were taken to hospital but later released. Eyewitnesses said the Iraqis appeared to have had no food/water for several days. (Wed. Sept. 13 2000)

The Bahamas refigerated M/V Arabian Sea (9,901 gt, built 1968) had a fire on board Sept. 9 while moored at the Industrial Molinera private terminal, Guayaquil River, for repairs. Fire started in kitchen & effected machinery-room. Vessel sustained serious damages. (Tues. Sept. 12 2000)

Tanker M/T OLYMPIC BREEZE (133,862 gt, built 1976) was in collision with M/V HARBEL TAPPER (9,232 gt, built 1981) in the Gulf of Mexico. Minor damage sustained to Olympic Breeze & proceeding to Sabine for inspection. Harbel Tapper reported no damage. (Sun. Sept. 10 2000)

The Polish S/V Bieszczady, which belonged to a maritime school based in Poland's Baltic port of Gdynia, sank off Denmark's northwestern coast on Sun. after being rammed by a merchant ship & up to 7 people are feared to have drowned. One of the 8 people on the yacht, a woman, was rescued while the bodies of 2 passengers were recovered & 5 passengers were missing, the Danish maritime rescue center (SOK) told Reuters. The yacht "sank after it was rammed by a merchant ship,". The survivor, Malgorzata Kedzielska, 19, told Danish police that she & the skipper had misunderstood the red & green navigation lights on the vessel into which they rammed. The crew members thought they were following the other ship but instead were heading toward it, & rammed head-on before sinking at 6 a.m. (0400 GMT) in fair weather. There are no details about the merchant vessel's origin, cargo & destination. The surviving woman was the yacht's Polish skipper. Helicopters & several boats continued searching around the North Sea site of the sinking some 20 nautical miles off the coastal town of Thyboroen. Bieszczady had left Cuxhaven, Germany, on Sept. 4 for a 2 week trip through the Baltic Sea to the Polish port of Swinoujscie. (Sun. Sept. 10 2000)

The Chinese M/V Zhehai 314, towed more than 100 North Koreans aboard a barge back to North Korea after it found them drifting at sea. Crew spotted the motorless, flat-bottomed barge on Thurs. as it drifted about 54 miles S. of Dandong port, near the North Korean border. Its passengers said that their vessel was being pulled by a tugboat on Mon. when the tow line snapped. They were waving their clothes to draw attention. Reports did not say where the barge had been headed. Tens of thousands of North Koreans live illegally in China. Many fled food shortages & tough conditions back home. (Fri. Sept. 8 2000)

Bulk carrier M/V EUROBULKER IX (16,038 gt, built 1979) with 17,200 tons of coal, grounded off Porto Vesme at about 0630, Sep 8. The vessel is heavily listing on her port side & her crew have been taken off. See also Oct. 3. (Fri. Sept. 8 2000)

A Russian-designed submarine, being built to smuggle drugs out of Colombia, was confiscated today outside of Bogota. The 100-foot (30- meter) sub was seized in a raid on a warehouse in a working-class neighborhood 18 miles W. of the capital. Police Chief Gen. Luis Ernesto Gilibert said Russian-language documents found alongside the partially completed vessel led authorities to conclude that "the Russian Mafia or Russian technicians" were involved in its construction. He did not speculate on why work on the ship had been started in the landlocked Colombian capital, which is perched in the Andes mountains 8,530 feet (2,600 meters) above sea level. Good thinking! It would have had the capacity to carry at least 150 metric tons of cocaine or heroin. No arrests were made, but this is reminiscent of a case in 1994 when 2 mini-subs used by Colombian drug traffickers were seized off the Caribbean port of Santa Marta. (Thurs. Sept. 7 2000)

Bulk carrier M/V FORTUNA EUROPA (17,265 gt, built 1986) experienced steering/engine problems Sep 5 & collided with pier no.14 of the Balboa-Hutchinson terminal at the Panama Canal. Substantial damage was sustained to both vessel & jetty. (Wed. Sept. 6 2000)

The container vessel M/V Manoa, Yokohama for Oakland, will make an emergency call in Alaska because crew heard a pounding noise coming from a deeply buried container, raising fears that it might contain stowaways. Manoa is expected to reach Dutch Harbor late today. The container originated in China. Crew heard the pounding after a power outage silenced the reefer container. The sound was traced to a 40-foot, dry box, 2nd from the bottom of the cell. Crewman in response tapped on the outside, and there was a responding tap from the inside. The crew punched an air hole into the container but heard nothing more. The container can't be opened because the space between the containers is too narrow. Once the 861-foot vessel docks at Dutch Harbor, options include lifting the other containers off with a shore-side crane or sending a welder into the ship to cut open the container doors. APL chartered the Manoa from Matson. (Wed. Sept. 6 2000) UPDATE: Coast Guard & immigration officials ended their search Thus. after efforts to find the source of a mysterious pounding sound aboard a ship diverted to this mid-Aleutians port came up empty. No signs of any stowaways were found during searches late Wed. & Thurs. of 17 of the 1,556 cargo containers. (Thurs. Sept. 7 2000)

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On 02. Sept. 2000 at 2215 LT in position: 01:04.0N - 104:54.5E. While underway pirates armed with machetes & knives boarded a container ship & proceeded to the master's cabin. They tied up the master stole US$22,000 from ship's safe. In departing, they confronted an A/B & robbed his personal belongings. The captain managed to call the chief officer who raised the alarm. (Mon. Sept 5 2000)

On 02 Sept. 2000 at 0045 LT in position: 00:58N - 105:02E. While underway, 6 armed pirates boarded a bulk carrier. They stole cash & other valuables and escaped in a boat towards Indonesian waters. (Mon. Sept 5 2000)

On 01 Sept. 2000 at 0300 LT in position: 12:36N - 046:23E, Red Sea. Two high-speed boats approached a ship, 1 heading towards the bow & the other towards the stern. The ship directed searchlights on the boats & raised the alarm. The pirate boats sped away. (Mon. Sept 5 2000)

On 01 Sept. 2000 at 0820 LT at Samarinda Muara anchorage, Indonesia. Whilst at anchor 9 pirates in a speedboat approached a vehicle carrier & attempted to board via the anchor chain. Alert duty officer & seamen spotted them. Pirates jumped overboard & escaped in their motorboat towards a waiting tugboat. (Mon. Seot 5 2000)

On 31 Aug. 2000 at 0200 LT at Panjang anchorage, Indonesia. Five pirates armed with long knives boarded a livestock carrier whilst their accomplices remained afloat. An alert watchman raised the alarm & the crew mustered. The pirates fled. (Mon. Sept 5 2000)

On 30 Aug. 2000 at 1630 UTC at position: 01:42.0N - 102:36.0E, Malacca Straits. Seven pirates armed with long knives boarded a container ship & entered master's cabin. Pirates ordered the master to open ship's safe and took all money. They also stole personal belongings of crew. Pirates escaped toward Tanjung Tohor. No injuries to master or crew. (Mon. Set 5 2000)

On 30 Aug. 2000 at 0245 LT in position: 03:57N - 098:47E, Belawan port, Indonesia. Seven pirates armed with long knives boarded a tanker. They tied up a pump man, threatened him with a knife & robbed his personal belongings. The duty officer noticed the pirates & raised the alarm & the pirates escaped. (Mon. Sept 5 2000)

On 29 Aug. 2000 at 2345 LT at Tema anchorage, Ghana. Ten pirates approached a general cargo ship & attempted to board the ship by climbing the anchor chain. Alert crew stopped the pirates gaining access to the ship. The ship's alarm was sounded and the local authorities were contacted by vhf. Pirates retreated & fled. (Mon. Sept 5 2000)

On 29 Aug. 2000 at 1920 LT at Chittagong Anchorage C, Bangladesh. Seven pirates from an unlit boat boarded a general cargo ship using hooks. The duty watchman on the deck spotted them & all crew mustered on deck. Pirates jumped over board and escaped in their boat. (Mon. Sept 5 2000)

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A Russian general claimed Sept. 4 that "rescuers" have located an object near the wrecked nuclear submarine Kursk that resembles equipment from a U.S. or British ship, but a navy spokesman denied any such discovery. Col. Gen. Valery Manilov offered no evidence for the claim, which he said supported the theory that a collision with a foreign vessel caused the explosions that killed the Kursk's 118-man crew Aug. 12. Manilov told a news conference that Russian "rescuers" discovered the mysterious object 50 yards from the sunken Kursk, and was being guarded by ships from Russia's Northern Fleet. He did not say when or how it was located or give other details, according to Russian news reports. We are not buying. (Mon. Sept. 4 2000)

M/V HELIOS, 1,329 gt, built 1983, Hikari for Inchon, with 909 tons of steel coils, was in collision with LPG carrier M/T YU HWA HO, 1,419 gt (built 1971) in approximately lat 34 35N, long 125 46.5, off Mokpo. HELIOS sustained heavy damage to side shell plating in way of No.2 port double bottom ballast tank. YU HWA HO sustained damage to bow area. HELIOS berthed at Mokpo around 1800 same day to discharge cargo, as unable to proceed on voyage. YU HWA HO proceeded to Ulsan, where arrived Sep 4. Vessel to sail for Busan for permanent repairs. (Mon. Sept. 4 2000)

Bulk carrier M/V ATLANTIC (15,608 gt, built 1985) with 25,000 tons of wheat, grounded in the River Parana Aug 30. (Sun. Sept. 3 2000)

Philippine coastguard are searching Manila Bay on Sat. for 4 crew missing after Panamian registered cargo vessel M/V Lilac -Singapore for Manila -- & a local barge collided. The local barge sank after the accident. The 732-ton barge, which was carrying gravel & sand, was being towed by another tug when the collision happened. (Sat. Sept. 2 2000)

Bulk carrier M/V ATLANTIC (15,608 gt, built 1985) with 25,000 tons of wheat, grounded in the River Parana Aug 30. (Fri. Sept. 1 2000)

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Vessel Loss Dispatches For August 2000


On 28 Aug. 2000 at 1900 UTC in position: 01:54.7N - 102:18.9E, Malacca straits. Six pirates armed with machetes & knives boarded a container ship from the poop deck from a small boat. They handcuffed the duty officer & held his wife as hostage. The pirates asked the duty officer to phone the master & took him down to the master's cabin. When the master opened the door he was attacked with a machete. The pirates stole ship's equipment & US$23,000 from the ship's safe. The master was seriously injured. (Thurs. Aug. 31 2000)

On 28 Aug. 2000 between 0200 - 0400 LT at Sandakan, Malaysia. Pirates boarded a general cargo ship & stole ship's stores & equipment. (Thurs. Aug. 31 2000)

On 27 Aug.2000 at 0430 LT in position: 05:25.2N - 100:21.1E, Penang port, Malaysia. The duty a/b on a container ship spotted 3 men on the forecastle, the duty officer raised the alarm and the crew mustered at their stations. On seeing the alert crew, the pirates jumped into the water & escaped in 2 small wooden boats. (Thurs. Aug. 31 2000)

On 26. Aug. 2000 at 1550 LT in position: 02:03.5N - 102:08.6E, Malacca straits. A fast boat with 5 pirates came alongside a container ship. Two pirates boarded the ship. Alert crew raised the alarm & directed fire hoses into the boat. Pirates jumped overboard & escaped. (Thurs. Aug. 31 2000)

On 24 Aug. 2000 at 2000 UTC at outer anchorage, Kandla, India. Three pirates boarded a bulk carrier via forecastle from a small wooden boat. Pirates left the ship when the duty officer raised the alarm & mustered all crew on deck. (Thurs. Aug. 31 2000)

On 24 Aug. 2000 at 0140 LT in position: 01:45N -102: 32E, Malacca Straits. While underway a pirate boat approached a tanker. The tanker directed the search lights at the boat & pirates did not board. It is believed the same pirates who attacked the Ro Ro ship an hour earlier were involved in this attack. (Thurs. Aug. 31 2000)

On 24 Aug. 2000 at 0030 LT in position: 01:46.7N - 102:27.04E, Malacca Straits. While underway eight pirates armed with knives boarded a Ro Ro ship from a motorboat. Pirates stole RM100,000 (about US$26,400) from crew & headed towards the Bengkalis Island in Indonesia. (Thurs. Aug. 31 2000)

On 23 Aug. 2000 at 2300 LT at Chittagong, Kutbdia anchorage, Bangladesh. Five men in a fishing boat boarded a bulk carrier from the stern. Crew and stevedores spotted the pirates & chased them. The pirates jumped into the water & escaped in their boat. (Thurs. Aug. 31 2000)

M/V NORDLAND (7.562 gt, built 1986) grounded at Dragonares, Kithira Island, on Aug 29. Cargo holds are reported to be dry, her engine-room is flooded. Some pollution from fuel oil. The situation appears to be serious as the vessel cannot be refloated by her own means. (Thurs. Aug. 31 2000)

A dolphin saved a 14-year-old boy from drowning in the Adriatic sea on Aug. 28, pushing him to the surface & helping him to a nearby boat. The boy, who could not swim, told Italian news agency ANSA he fell from the boat as he was sailing with his father in the gulf of Manfredonia, off the southern Italian coast. As he was slipping under the water, something pushed him up. The mammal carried the boy to the boat & swam away. The dolphin has lived in the gulf's waters for years, locals say, & has been dubbed Filippo. It's nice to have a happy story here. (Mon. Aug. 28 2000)

The Russian hydrofoil M/V Voskhod-42, city of Perm for Naberezhnye Chelny, further south on the Kama River, in collision with barge in a reservoir in central Russia, killing 6 people & wounding 17. All casualties were passengers of the Voskhod-42 which had a total of about 25 passengers on board. The 2 vessels crashed in heavy fog that shrouded the Votkinsky reservoir, located in the Perm region about 750 miles east of Moscow, a duty officer at Emergency Situations Ministry said. No other information about the collision immediately available. (Sun. Aug. 27 2000)

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On 18 Aug. 2000 at Tg. Priok anchorage, Jakarta, Indonesia. Unnoticed by the crew, pirates boarded a container vessel from starboard side while crew were attending to customs on the port side. They broke padlocks and stole safety equipment & ship's stores. (Sat. Aug. 26 2000)

On 17 Aug. 2000 at 0320 LT at SPM Belawan, Indonesia. While discharging, pirates boarded a tanker & stole ship's stores. They attacked a crewmember with steel pipe & a knife. (Sat. Aug. 26 2000)

On 15 Aug. 2000 at 0950 LT in position: 05:35N - 097: 38E, Malacca Straits. Four high-speed boats approached a tanker very close from both sides. Master raised general alarm, sounded whistle. Crew mustered on deck & activated fire hoses. Other ships in the vicinity were warned via VHF ch.16. Pirates retreated & headed towards another vessel. (Sat. Aug. 26 2000)

On 15 Aug. 2000 at 0400 LT in position: 09:05N - 013:49W, at anchor, 26 miles South of Conakry, Guinea. Nine men armed with shotguns in a wooden boat attempted to board a bulk carrier. The duty officer raised alarm & sounded the whistle. The ship's crew fired rocket flares at the boat. The pirates aborted the attempt. (Sat. Aug. 26 2000)

Yugoslav military personnel armed with machine guns boarded the U.S. vessel M/V Delaware Bay carrying humanitarian food supplies in the Adriatic last weekend & allowed the ship to leave after payment of a US$3,200 fee. There were moments of high tension during the incident "This kind of harassment could impede future humanitarian shipments" in the region, the U.S. State Dept.said. The shipment, consisting of grain, was earmarked for Kosovo The vessel was seized in Yugoslav territorial waters off the coast of Montenegro, the smaller of the two republics that make up Yugoslavia. Word of the incident was 1st reported by the newsletter of the American Maritime Congress, which said that the vessel also was carrying military cargo for Israel & Egypt. The incident occurred at a time of growing U.S. concern about the intentions of Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic toward Montenegro, which has a pro-western government & whose leaders have made no secret of their desire for independence. Some U.S. officials believe Milosevic may be poised for a military move against the province. The Yugoslavs demanded that the ship be taken to a military port, that communications be shut down, & that the bill of lading & crew list be turned over. Watch this one. (Sat. Aug. 26 2000)

The German container vessel M/V LUDWIGSHAFEN EXPRESS (53,833 gross), Singapore for Marsaxlokk, collided with the Croatian ro-ro M/V RAPOCA (4,605 gross). Ploce for Tripoli, at Marsaxlokk Harbor Aug 24. Quay damaged in contact. (Sat. Aug. 26 2000)

An as yet unidentified ship carrying 100 passengers from Indonesia has capsized in the Straits of Malacca after being hit by strong waves. Malaysian authorities rescued 7 passengers, but the fate of the rest of those aboard was not immediately known. The vessel was hit by strong waves after it left Dumai in Sumatra, Indonesia, on the way to Malaysia on Aug. 23 night & went down in Indonesian waters, the official Bernama news agency reported.Three of the survivors were rescued by a passing ship which radioed police on Aug. 24. (Fri. Aug. 25 2000)

The Swedish chemical tanker M/T UNITED TRAVELLER (7,973 gross), Dunkirk for Lorient with gasoil, had fire in pump-room while discharging at Lorient Aug 24. Fire extinguished same day. Discharge halted & damage assessment under way. (Thus. Aug. 24 2000)

Failed generators aboard the cruise ship M/V Big Red Boat II, New York for Halifax, stranded 1,100 passengers in Boston this week. Three of the 5 generators aboard failed, forcing the ship to dock in South Boston. Many of the passengers had taken the trip as repayment for another cruise that had similar problems. Instead of a pleasant trip, passengers dined in the dark & slept on deck in order to escape their stuffy rooms. After the power went out, the plumbing stopped working as well. The water was brown. Premier Cruise Lines charged US$1.75 for a bottle of water to use for brushing teeth. Good work. (Wed. Aug. 23 2000)

The former M/V Golden Venture was sent to the bottom of the ocean to form an artificial reef. The 147-foot ship, which grounded off Rockaway Beach, N.Y., in 1993 while carrying a cargo of Chinese immigrants, sank in 20 minutes today after holes drilled into its hull filled with water. It's sitting perfectly upright in the sand & be a good dive site. The Palm Beach, FL county paid US$60,000 for the aging rust-colored ship, renamed the M/V United Caribbean, after its owner couldn't find another buyer because the vessel needed too many repairs. As the Golden Venture, the ship carried about 290 Chinese immigrants who paid up to US$30,000 each to be secreted away under a tarp in the cramped belly of the freighter. Passengers were forced to live on a diet of rice, dirty water & spoiled food as the ship sailed from Kenya to New York. (Wed. Aug. 23 2000)

The Antigua & Barbuda container vessel M/V CITY OF TUNIS (19,819 gross), Beirut for Felixstowe, had engine trouble off Brest, in lat 48 38N, long 05 13W, Aug 22. Taken in tow by tug Abeille Flandre bound Brest for repairs. (Tues. Aug. 22 2000)

SUB DOWN UPDATE: (Intial Reports below) >> The rescue effort is ended. Salvage begins. Controversy for the Russians continues, with valid grounds. This will take time. May God please bless all this crew. They well deserved a better response. Our close news coverage of the SSGN Kursk<<webfeature ends now with great sadness. We will continue to report significant developments in this story for you, but with Winter approaching, we do not expect any major efforts to recover either vessel or crew until next Spring. (Los Angeles PM Aug. 21 2000)

The Indonesian M/V Supera One (35 gt) with 66 passengers & crew missing during voyage from Indonesia's violence-wracked Maluka islands to neighboring Sulawesi island. The Supera One left Ruba Ruba village on Halmahera island on Aug. 19 bound for Bitung in North Sulawesi province, about 180 miles to the west. The vessel had no radio & officials feared it may have broken down. The Maluku islands, also known as the Moluccas, have been plagued by pirates & Muslim-Christian violence that has claimed nearly 4,000 lives since Jan.1999. (Mon. Aug. 21 2000) UPDATE >> M/V Supera One was found Aug. 21 stranded about 24 miles north of Sulawesi island after its engine broke down. The vessel was towed to a nearby island. (Tues. Aug. 22 2000)

SUB DOWN UPDATE: (Intial Reports below) >> Russian & Norwegian officials said today that none of the 118 crew of the sunken SSGN Kursk<<webfeature submarine had survived an accident 9 days ago after divers found the vessel flooded. Rescue operations will be abandoned. Russia has asked for help recovering the sailors' bodies. Russian T.V. said one body had already been found near an escape hatch. "Our worst expectations are confirmed. All sections of the submarine are totally flooded & not a single member of the crew remains alive," Russian news agency RIA quoted Northern Fleet chief of staff Mikhail Motsak as saying. Norwegian divers provided final proof as they opened the inner hatch of the submarine, 354 feet down in the Arctic waters of the Barents Sea, & found it flooded. There 1s growing criticism of Russia's handling of the crisis, as the head of the Norwegian mission complained of excessive Russian bureaucracy and a Russian politician accused the Northern Fleet of not properly assessing the disaster. (Mid Day Mon. Aug. 21 2000)

SUB DOWN UPDATE: (Intial Reports below) >> Three Norwegian divers opened the outer hatch of the sunken Russian submarine on today are getting ready to open the inner hatch which leads inside theSSGN Kursk<<webfeature, believed to be a mass grave of 118 crew. "At 7:45 a.m. LT the divers opened the hatch," said Northern Fleet commander Vyacheslav Popov, who runs the rescue operation at sea. "There was nobody in the airlock," he said. "The next step is to open the inner hatch." Popov said he believed compartment 9 in the aft of the Kursk to which the inner hatch leads was flooded, which meant that there was no chance of finding survivors. "There are several possibilities -- my personal opinion is that it is flooded. This has to be checked by opening the inner hatch," Popov said. Russian media quoted experts as suggesting compartments 8 & 7 could have escaped flooding. Popov said some of the 12 Norwegian divers working on the Kursk had agreed to go inside. The mother ship M/V Normand Pioneer has moved close to site & LR-5 has been lowered into the water. (Los Angeles Late PM Sun. Aug. 20 2000)

Tanker M/T TOULA Z. (57,949 gt, built 1997) was in collision with M/V ARKTIS MISTRAL (6,310 gt, built 1998) in the Houston Ship Channel south of Baytown on Aug 16. Arktis Mistral subsequently grounded but refloated after deballasting. Both vessels damaged. Arktis Mistral presently at Barbours Cut. Toula Z. moored at Exxon Pier, Baytown. (Sun. Aug. 20 2000)

SUB DOWN UPDATE: (Intial Reports below) >> Norwegian divers struggled today to open a hatch into the stricken SSGN Kursk<<webfeature, whose 118 crew members are already believed to be dead. Norwegian & Russian officials contradicted each other as to how tough it would be to release the hatch on the submarine, lying 354 feet down on the bed of the Barents Sea. The hatch 1s so badly damaged it wil have to be torn off. A decision had been made to use a crane on the Norwegian rescue ship to do this. (PM Sun. Aug. 21 2000)

M/V Bangluang (dwt 6042.39/grt 3908/call sign hsdq/crew 23) sending distress signal & all hands have abandoned ship, 0210 UTC, 1708. Signal reads that vessel is "heavy listing & caught in rough seas". SOS sent out location Lat 07' 14.87 N, 111' 44.23" East. Nearest point bearing 187 deg. true and distance 85.0 miles from the Spratly Islands & bearing 124 deg. true & distance 330 miles from V'Tau. Message repeats SOS!. Vessel sailed from Quinhon 1508 1100 LT for Indonesia with 754 bdls/3,412.72 MT pinewood. Captain: Mongkon Reoruad. (Sun. Aug. 21 2000)

SUB DOWN UPDATE: (Intial Reports below) >> Norwegian divers with video equipment went down to SSGN Kursk<<webfeature this morning in a final attempt to find survivors trapped for a week, even though Russian officials said all 118 seamen aboard are probably dead. The Western rescue effort, delayed by initial Russian reluctance to accept foreign aid, involved British mini-submarine LR-5 that waited its turn to dive into the cold depths of the northern Barents Sea. PRAY. (Los Angles Early AM Sun. Aug. 21 2000)

SUB DOWN UPDATE: (Intial Reports below) >> Norwegian deep-sea divers & the British LR-5 rescue mini-submarine will position themselves over the Kursk after dawn, just as this is posted. The Norwegian divers will 1st attempt to enter the submarine's airlock to check a device that monitors pressure within the submarine to see whether it is possible anyone could be alive inside. The British team will then attempt to maneuver the LR5 onto Kursk & form an airlock through which surviving crew could escape. The Int'l effort is the last slim hope for any survivors after devastating explosions wrecked the front sections of the nuclear-powered submarine and sent it plunging 354 feet to the Barents Sea floor on August 12. Today, 8 days after the accident, a Russian naval officer made the announcement everyone feared: most of the crew had been killed outright, & by now the rest were almost certainly dead. (Los Angeles PM Sat. Aug. 20 2000)

Key Events in Russia Sub Trauma

-Aug. 12. - The submarine crashes to the bottom of the Barents Sea during naval exercises.

-Aug. 13. - Russian ships hunt for the missing submarine. The loss is not announced.

-Aug. 14 - The navy announces a submarine has suffered a malfunction in the Barents Sea, but says it has only been missing one day. Officials say surface vessels in radio contact, and air and power lines linked up to the submarine, indicating quick rescue.

-Aug. 15 - Navy says rescue effort underway with underwater capsules. Unconfirmed reports speak of sounds from vessel indicating survivors.

-Aug. 16 - Rescue efforts continue. Top officials give contradictory reports on state of Kursk and chances of survivors. After refusing Western aid, Moscow asks Britain and Norway to send rescue submarine and divers. Public criticism grows of handling of the event and President Vladimir Putin's decision not to interrupt his vacation to handle the crisis.

-Aug. 17 - Government commission says Kursk collided with another object despite U.S. and Norwegian reports of massive explosion in region at time submarine went down. British and Norwegian rescue crews head for Russia on ships.

-Aug. 18 - Russian rescue capsule reaches Kursk's escape hatch for the 1st time, but finds it too badly damaged to dock. Government says huge explosion shattered Kursk, but uncertain as to what triggered it.

-Aug. 19 - Attempts to dock with escape hatch fail again. Russian navy says virtually certainly that all crew dead, most perishing in 1st few moments of disaster. British rescue team arrives on scene. Putin returns to Moscow ahead of schedule.

SUB DOWN UPDATE: (Intial Reports below) >> The British Defense Ministry said Norway's M/V Normand Pioneer mother ship carrying the British navy's LR-5 mini-submarine is now in position 5 miles (8 km) from where the SSGN Kursk<<webfeature is lying 108 meters (354 feet) down on the bed of the frigid Barents Sea. The British state-of-art rescue submarine is the last slim hope to save at least some of the sailors, with the help of Norwegian deep sea divers who are expected by midnight (2000 GMT). A rescue could be hampered if reports that the Kursk's escape hatchs were damaged when the submarine hit the seabed prove true. Deep currents in the area are still strong & have hindered Russian rescue efforts. It also said the weather might worsen. The Russian navy said today the Kursk's crew was almost certainly dead, 8 days after the submarine was involved in a catastrophic accident. (Mid Day Sat. Aug. 20 2000)

The U.S. Navy has suspended testing of the USS Seawolf while engineers investigate a welding problem on the US$2.4B attack submarine. The problem affects the sub's air flasks, which provide buoyancy that allows the submarine to dive & surface. Capt. Keith G. Arterburn, a spokesman for Naval Sea Systems Command, said the problem was discovered while examining 2 air flasks that were purchased for testing & were never installed on the submarine. "The flaws they found were large enough to cause concern, but they could be repaired by cutting them out or grinding them & re-welding," Arterburn said.. The problem is limited to the USS Seawolf & will not affect the 2nd ship of the class, USS Connecticut, which is in a scheduled repair period, or the USS Jimmy Carter, which is under construction & scheduled to be commissioned in 2002. The Navy has said the Seawolf submarines, the newest attack subs in its fleet, are the quietest, fastest & most complex ever built. The USS Seawolf was supposed to be in the middle of a 6 month operational evaluation, a series of tests to determine the range of its capabilities, prior to its 1st scheduled deployment later this year. (AM Sat. Aug. 20 2000)

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On 14. Aug. 2000 at 2235 LT, Cochin anchorage, India. Three pirates boarded a tanker from poop deck & took duty A/B hostage and threatened him with a knife. The duty officer on the bridge suspected something was wrong when he tried to communicate with the A/B on the walkie-talkie. The duty officer raised alarm & the ship's crew mustered on the deck. The pirates escaped in their small wooden boat with two mooring lines. Coast guard was informed and they carried out a search for the pirate boat. (Sat. Aug. 20 2000)

On 13. Aug. 2000 at 0325 LT at Anyer anchorage, Indonesia. Duty oiler on a bulk carrier noticed 3 pirates in the engine room workshop. He informed the bridge duty officer who raised the alarm. The pirates escaped immediately. It was suspected that the pirates entered & escaped through an open door in the galley. (Sat. Aug. 20 2000)

On 10. Aug. 2000 LT, Laemchabang anchorage, Thailand. Pirates armed with knives boarded a container ship & broke into paint locker. Alert crew raised the alarm & the attack was aborted. (Sat. Aug. 20 2000)

On 10. Aug. 2000 at 0240 LT in position: 01:53.5N -102:21E, Malacca straits. While underway, 5 pirates armed with long knives boarded a bulk carrier and robbed the crew of US$1,250 & personal valuables. The pirates disembarked & headed towards the Indonesian coast. (Sat. Aug. 20 2000)

On 09. Aug. 2000 at 0130 LT at outer anchorage, Chittagong, Bangladesh. Whilst waiting for a berth, armed pirates attacked a general cargo ship. The pirates shot one crewmember & a watchman. The other crew resisted & the pirates retreated. Other ships in the vicinity also came to support. The port authorities gave priority berthing to the ship to prevent further attack. (Sat. Aug. 20 2000)

SUB DOWN UPDATE: (Intial Reports below) >> The British team, traveling on a Norwegian ship with their LR5 submersible, hope to maneuver their vessel on to the Kursk, sitting on the bed of the Barents Sea, & form an airlock between the two, through which the crew could escape. The ship is due to reach the site at 6 p.m. on Saturday. A team of Norwegian divers are expected 7 hours later. Meanwhile, the 9th attempt by Russian diving bell to address the situation has failed. (PM Fri. Aug. 19 2000)

The St.Vincent & Grenadines bulk carrier M/V DOUBLE BRAVE (5,078 gross), Hong Kong for Sarawak with textiles, was in collision with a barge, which in tow, & sank at Tanjung Po Anchorage, Sarawak River, Aug 12. All crew rescued. Diesel leaking from vessel. Clean up still in hand Aug 17. Owners ordered to refloat her urgently. (Fri. Aug. 19 2000)

SUB DOWN UPDATE: (Intial Reports below) >> A rescue capsule physically reached one of the escape hatches on Kursk for the 1st time Friday but was unable to gain access because it was so badly damaged. It is now said that both the fore & aft rescue hatches are badly damaged. The Russian rescue craft returned to the surface after repeated attempts failed, said navy spokesman Capt. Igor Babenko. A larger escape capsule took over and was trying to link up with the hatch. Four Russian rescue capsules have been trying since Aug. 16 to reach the 118 men aboard the shattered hulk of sub, lying 350 feet below the surface. President Vladimir Putin, facing a public outcry over the tragedy unfolding in the Arctic, said today there had been little chance from the start to save the crew. (Mid Day Fri. Aug. 18 2000)

SUB DOWN UPDATE: (Intial Reports below) >> The sunken submarine SSGN Kursk<<webfeature has a "terrifying hole" on its starboard side from bow to sail, a top Russian official said today as new underwater film indicated that an explosion wrecked the vessel & sent it plunging to the sea bottom in seconds. As we have suggested to you here since the 1st day, a catastrophic event in the forward torpedo room, after Kursk requested permission to fire training torpedoes, resulted in an explosion in the torpedo room -- and the death of Kursk. Deputy Prime Minister Ilya Klebanov said most of the nuclear submarine's 118 crewmen were likely in the damaged section of the vessel, suggesting they had no time to escape. Simple Russian rescue efforts using objectively obsolete means have failed to reach the sub, which is trapped 354 feet down in the Barents Sea. Rescue teams from Britain & Norway, at long last after 4 days of delay permitted by Russia to help, cannot get to the site until the weekend. We cheer & encourage the efforts of the UK's LR-5 and the British rescuers, but in reading the reports here & below, there is now a long resisted conclusion that hope is no longer a negotiable commodity. We watch, but there is only sorrow. Good luck to LR-5 -- but the mission can have no happy ending. Candor from the Russian Navy would clearly have made these stories read quite differently, days ago. (Early AM Fri. Aug. 18 2000)

The Suriname tug KARL-HEINZ I (205 gross) disabled & not under command off Selsey Bill, in lat 50 37.5N, long 01 00.8W, Aug 17. Towed to St.Helens Road, Isle of Wight, by the Bembridge Lifeboat. Anchored in lat 50 42.9N, long 01 03.7W, same day. (Fri. Aug. 18 2000)

SUB DOWN UPDATE: (Intial Reports below) >> SSGN Kursk<<webfeature is now said down by the bow with heavy damage from bow to the sail. Indeed, results of the torpedo room event appear to be catastrophic. At least half the boat was physically affected. The list to starboard is said now only 12 degrees, which can be handled by England's LR-5. Contrary to Russian reports, U.S. officials now say that no signs of life aboard the sub, such as tapping, have been detected since the event. There are 2 U.S. subs on scene. Film of the submarine being studied showed massive damage reaching from the front to the conning tower that would have sent the vessel crashing to the bottom in seconds, navy officials said. The control room where most of the crew work is below the tower, suggesting many sailors could not escape when the submarine went down. U.S. submarines monitoring Russian navy exercises when the Kursk was lost detected two explosions at the time. The 2nd explosion was much larger than the 1st. The Russian navy refused to confirm the U.S. reports, but officers have said an explosion in the torpedo compartment in the bow of the submarine apparently caused the Kursk to sink. A likely scenario was that one torpedo exploded, setting off a much bigger explosion in the compartment that is packed with torpedoes. The Kursk can carry up to 28 torpedoes & anti-submarine missiles, each with warheads weighing up to 1,000 pounds. An explosion involving even a few torpedoes would have caused catastrophic damag (Mid Day Thurs. Aug. 17 2000)

SUB DOWN UPDATE: (Intial Reports below) >> Britain has loaded rescue mini-submarine LR-5 onto a ship in Norway in a race to help save 118 Russian sailors trapped in Kursk in the Barents Sea. British officials said they loaded LR-5 late on Wed. night onto the chartered M/V Normand Pioneer at the Norwegian port of Trondheim. Britain responded to the Russian early decline of Western assistance by secretly propositioning it's rescue assets to Norway in last several days. Way to go UK! The move of assets such as mini-submarine LR-5 have taken days. The crew of Russia's nuclear-powered submarine have stopped tapping SOS signals on the hull -- for days their only link to the outside world -- but Russian officials say there is still hope they are alive. Commander Alan Hoskins of the British navy's Royal Navy Submarine Recovery Team told BBC television that his team expected to be in place on Sat. "It's about 50 hours to get there. We'll be making maximum speed so Sat. lunchtime is indeed the best estimate," he said. The M/V Normand Pioneer is expected to leave Trondheim early on Thurs. This schedule, although heroic, does not seem to meet life needs. Why did not the Russian Navy act with greater responsibility? Meanwhile, there is no word in any of the Int'l press tonight regarding a previously anounced Russian plan to raise the 508 ft. hull by it's stern, above it's 351 ft. depth. There are ships available which just might be able to make such history, but the Russians have again waited until the clock has run out before callling on such assets. Very sad. Again, USS Avalon would have been "there" by now had the Russians acted responsibly toward it's crew. Pray. (Early AM Thurs. Aug. 17 2000)

An unidentified U.S. ship rescued the 2 man crew of an Iranian helicopter that crashed near an oil rig in the Persian Gulf. In view of the Kursk, it may be well to remind of a U.S. Navy history for rescue of those in peril on the sea. The conditions of the pilot & co-pilot, who were believed to be Iranian, were not immediately known. The helicopter was apparently ferrying personnel between the rig Saga & land when it crashed late Aug. 15 in the South Pars gas field, the biggest offshore gas deposit in Iran. It had 6 people on board, reported the Islamic Republic News Agency. The cause of the accident was not immediately known. The 4 passengers, one of whom was injured, were rescued shortly afterward. The 2 crew members were reported missing. The Foreign Ministry did not say whether the U.S. ship that rescued the 2 was military or civilian. The United States does not have relations with Iran. (Thurs. Aug. 17 2000)

The Phillipines ferry M/V SAN JUAN FERRY (821 gross) had explosion in her engine-room & sank off Liloan Town, off Cebu Island, while undergoing sea trials following repairs Aug 14. All crew rescued. (Thurs. Aug. 17 2000)

SUB DOWN UPDATE: (Intial Reports below) >> Russia finally asked for help from the West today as its own rescuers desperately struggle through swirling sand & strong currents, trying to lower an escape capsule to 116 sailors trapped in a crippled Russian nuclear submarine on the sea bottom. Russia has asked for help from Britain & Norway. Britain had already flown mini-submarine LR-5 and the Royal Navy Submarine Recovery Team to Norway in preparation to assist in a rescue effort, but it may not reach scene until Friday. LR-5 has a crew of 3 and can carry a total of 16. LR-5 faces the same hatch compatability questions dicussed earler. Meanwhile, the Russian navy continues desperate attempts to lower a rescue capsule to the Kursk. But rescuers have had to battle worsening weather in the Barents Sea and high winds & waves that buffeted rescue ships. Attempts to latch on to one of the cargo hatches of the submarine were being frustrated because the current was rocking the rescue capsule, making it difficult to steer. Rescuers were only able to see a few inches through the muddy water even though they had searchlights. A rescue capsule was almost lost during an earlier attempt because of the strong currents. Because the 508 ft. vessel is longer than it is deep, Russia is considering an attempt to raise the Kursk by her stern, so that crew may scramble aft, climb "up" & escape through the aft trunk. This would be an absolute world first. (Mid Day Wed. Aug. 16 2000)

SUB DOWN UPDATE: (Intial Reports below) >> Racing against time, Russian Navy rescuers again began lowering a piloted escape capsule on the morning of Aug. 17 to the crippled nuclear submarine SSGN Kursk<<webfeature in a new attempt to save the 116 sailors trapped inside. The latest bid came after earlier attempts during the night to lower another unmanned rescue capsule to the Kursk failed because they ran out of air & poor visibility made it impossible to connect with the submarine. Oxygen for the vessel's 116 crewmen is expected to last just 2 more days (many experts say time is up NOW), Russia's navy chief said. The 1st capsule is being recharged while the 2nd one is trying to reach the submarine, navy officials said. Efforts to connect with the submarine during the night were frustrated by strong currents & swirling sand that made it difficult to see. The sunken submarine is lying 354 feet below the surface. (Early AM Wed. Aug. 17 2000)

The Netherlands M/V DONGEDIJK (2,500 gross) began to sink at Hectometer 95, eastern Suez Canal, while departing Port Said, Aug 15. Salvors on scene. All 12 crew members of a Dutch cargo ship were rescued. The mishap was due to a mistake in loading the containers, which unbalanced the ship, according to the Port Said prosecutor's office. (Tues. Aug. 16 2000)

SUB DOWN UPDATE: (Intial Reports below) >> As a 3rd attempt (at least) Russian crews lowered a bell-shaped rescue capsule early Wed., Aug. 17, to SSGN Kursk<<webfeature lying on the Arctic Sea floor, but strong currents blocked attempts at docking. Oxygen for the vessel's 116 crewmen is expected to last just 2 more days, Russia's navy chief said. Navy chief, Adm. Vladimir Kuroyedov, said the situation is ''extremely grave'' with oxygen inside the craft expected to run out Fri. Navy officials said water appeared to be leaking into the vessel. Adm. Kuroyedov described what appeared to be extensive damage. He said the submarine's periscope was up but its navigation room was damaged, the railing was dented & the protective cover of 2 missile tubes on the vessel's starboard side was missing. Kuroyedov said earlier today that there appeared to have been an explosion in the torpedo room (as we predicted here two days ago) in the bow of the submarine, sending it crashing to the sea bottom. He said earlier that the Kursk had likely collided with something & it wasn't clear why he had earlier changed his assessment. Late word to Los Angeles tonight is the coded tapping on the pressure hull has ceased. Finally, a group of Russian Admirals has traveled to NATO headquarters in Belgium to discuss the incident. The Russians wanted to know what kind of help the alliance could provide in the effort to rescue the 116 sailors, a NATO source said. On the basis of this information, Russia will decide whether to make an official request. But, when? The Russians act as if this project can be plotted on one of their famous "Five Year Plans." The source said he had no information about the technical details discussed. The best immediate source of NATO help for the Russians would be the Royal Navy Submarine Recovery Team, a 20-member unit made up of experts in submarine rescue & escape. That unit is under the Eastern Atlantic naval command. The team's equipment is located on the south coast of England & could be ready to move in a matter of hours, according to Paul Beaver of Jane's Defense Information Group. "They have a sub that could be put in the back of a large transport aircraft & flown to Mermansk in a matter of hours," Beaver said. "They probably would get a commercial ship to meet them there & could be starting work on Thursday morning." The 2 sides exchanged technical information for about 30 minutes during the conference, the NATO source said. To little, too late. Although there were many obstacles & no guarantee of success, USS Avalon or her sister USS Mystic would have been on scene by now via C-5A air delivery, or very close. A very high price is being paid for Russian security concerning it's rusted & aging fleet which is being used to "fight" a concluded Cold War. (PM Tues. Aug. 16 2000)

ED Note: The Russian Navy used to have a limited submarine rescue capability with it's India Class submarines. Under the circumstances, it seems clear that these vessels are no longer functioning. Sad.

SUB DOWN UPDATE: (Intial Reports below) >> A rescue effort is underway to lower a submersible sphere (obsolete device) over the SSGN Kursk<<webfeature, but the sub is lying at a 60 degree angle. If successful, the rescue bell can perhaps lift out as many as 8 to 12 crew per dive. Arctic daylight is about 4 hours longer than in the lower latitudes, but weather is rain & rolling seas. (Mid Day Tues. Aug. 16 2000)

SUB DOWN UPDATE: (Intial Report below) >> A spokesman for Russia's Navy said Aug. 16 oxygen was running low in Kursk lying on the bottom of the Arctic Barents Sea and signals from the 116 crew are getting weaker.The crew had been sending signals to rescuers by knocking on the side of the ship. It was not clear how the rescuers had heard the signals. But a spokesman for the navy in Moscow said rescuers would remain "optimistic about saving the crew until Friday." The crew was forced to shut down the Kursk's reactor on Aug. 14 & let the craft sink to the bottom of the sea due to an unidentified accident which officials now attribute to a missile mishap of some sort. The commander of Russia's navy said Aug. 15 evening he hoped rescuers would be able to lower an evacuation craft to the stricken submarine Kursk within the next "hour or two", but this obviously has not happened. (AM Tues. Aug. 16 2000)

SUB DOWN (Intial Reports below) >> Both nuclear reactors of the 508 ft. Russian Oscar II Class nuclear submarine SSGN Kursk<<webfeature are shut down, but battery power will not last more than 72 hours. Oxygen candles will be used thereafter to sustain what's left of the poor crew. Tapping is heard from the pressure hull. Last word from the boat was permission to fire training torpedoes, thus in our opinion suggesting a forward torpedo room disaster (for example, both doors open to sea, or torpedo motors running in tube). But Russian Navy says problem was a collision. Offers from U.S. Navy to deploy one of it's DSRVs (Deep Submergence Rescue Vessel), have been turned down. Hope slim. There is no evidence that an American ship or submarine was involved, Pentagon officials said. Two U.S. Navy submarines were operating in the area at the time of the accident, & one reported having heard an explosion at the site on Aug.13. Russian officials said the incident happened Aug. 14, but the U.S. official said it was Aug. 13. All indications are that there was no U.S. involvement in the accident. The U.S. Navy surveillance ship USNS Loyal was monitoring submarine movements in the vicinity of the Barents Sea at the time of the accident but was far from the scene, Pentagon officials said. Russian officials initially said their sub was in a major collision, although the circumstances of the accident remain unclear. (Mon. Aug. 15 2000)

While the Russian Navy says "hope is dim", experts questions why won't it allow the U.S. Navy to at least make an attemp[t? The U.S. Navy's submarine resue vehicle DSRV Avalon can move ex-San Diego on 2 hours notice aboard a U.S. Air Force C-5A for a flight to the trouble area. At the accident site, the 49-foot DSRV rescue vessel dives, conducts a sonar search, & attaches to the disabled submarines hatch. The rescue vessel can take aboard up to 24 personnel at a time for transfer to safety. There are many other problems, such as a proper "mother sub" for the DSRV being closest at Norfolk or whether the docking hatches will work, but we do not understand why Russia has not at least made the "help request." Maybe rescue is possible, maybe it is not. The lack of request says volumes about The Russian Navy.

ED Note: The Barents Sea is often patrolled by U.S. submarines. In 1993, a U.S. submarine, the USS Grayling, collided with a Russian ballistic missile submarine, causing slight damage to both vessels. A year earlier, also in the Barents Sea, the USS Baton Rouge sub hit a Russian sub, also causing minimal damage.

The Panamanian vehicle carrier M/V FENG LI (9,239 gross), Nagoya for Brisbane with cars, lost her propeller off the New Soth Wales coast prev Jul 31. Towed to Melbourne by tug Woona, where arrived Jul 31. (Mon. Aug. 15 2000)

.SPECIAL NOTE >> The Cargo Letter will continue to follow this undersea tragedy, but it must must be known that an understanding of commom submarine technology suggests a reality that the submarine Kursk is dead, alomg with her crew. Our hearts of this day in August 2000 are heavy for the loss of crews which are not seen as capable of being lost. It might not make us a "team player" to just condem the Kursk, but we feel that the jury has already ruled. Again, for you readers we will follow this story with every effort available -- but the Russian Oscar II Kursk is dead -- the product of some undersea mishap. Sadly, it will be found in time that all the crew died instantly --the result of a big explosion. History will tell us how this happened. Current news says that crew may be "tapping", but we do not believe there could possibly be any "tapping" after such a great explosion & system failure. All crew are dead -- we are quite sorry to bring you this opinion. We cry. We will now continue to bring you the "news." (Mon. Aug. 15 2000)

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On 02 Aug. 2000 in Bangka strait, Indonesia. While underway, approximately 6 pirates boarded a container ship. The 3rd engineer informed the bridge & the alarm was raised. The pirates escaped in their boat . (Sun. Aug. 14 2000)

On 02 Aug. 2000 at anchor at Chittagong, Bangladesh. Two pirates boarded a container ship. The duty officer noticed them whereupon they escaped. (Sun. Aug. 14 2000)

On 01 Aug. 2000 at anchor at Cochin, India. Eight pirates boarded a tanker via anchor chain. Duty A/B spotted them & informed the bridge. The alarm was raised & crew mustered at emergency stations. The pirates escaped taking with them one mooring rope. (Sun. Aug. 13 2000)

On 31 July 2000 in position: 10:47.5N - 109:56.4E, South China Sea. Two high-speed boats approached both sides of a RORO ship. The ship fired signal rockets & activated high-pressure water jets. The boats retreated. (Sun. Aug. 13 2000)

On 29 July 2000 at 1645 UTC at Chittagong anchorage, Bangladesh. Ten pirates armed with knives made 3 attempts to board a general cargo ship from stern & bow. The attempted boarding was unsuccessful. (Sun. Aug. 13 2000)

On 29 July 2000 at 0200 LT at Chittagong Alpha anchorage, Bangladesh. About 20 pirates armed with long knives boarded a bulk carrier & tied up 2 local watchmen on board. They forced open forecastle store & stole ship's stores. Duty officer raised alarm & alerted the crew. The pirates escaped . (Sun. Aug. 13 2000)

On 29 July 2000 at 1342 UTC in position: 20:13N - 092:22E, Myanmar. While underway en route from Singapore to Bangladesh a general cargo ship was chased & fired at by pirates in a boat. The master increased speed & sent messages for help. The chase continued for 2 hours before being aborted. There was no response from the rescue center in Yangon. No injuries to crew & no boarding took place. (Sun. Aug. 13 2000)

A 19-year-old passenger on a Southwest Airlines domestic U.S. flight tried to break into the cockpit, then died of an apparent heart attack after being taken into custody on Aug. 12.. The man, on a flight from Las Vegas to Salt Lake City, was pulled off the plane by airport security when the plane landed. (Sat. Aug. 12 2000)

Congolese rebels claim to have >> killed at least 800 << government soldiers when they ambushed, burned & sank 3 river gunboats, using 107mm artillery missiles. Jean-Pierre Bemba, leader of the Congolese Liberation Movement (MLC), said they attacked the boats mounted with heavy artillery on Aug. 10 on the Ubangui river in the north-west of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. "The boats were set alight & sunk - one of them completely exploded. We have counted at least 800 bodies floating in the river. It was a massacre," the leader said. (Sat. Aug. 12 2000)

The Cyprus M/V THEOFANO (13,430 gross), Leghorn for Piraeus in ballast, had explosion in her engine-room in lat 36 58N, long 23 41E, Aug 10. Not under command. 1 crew member injured & helicoptered off. (Fri. Aug. 11 2000)

The South Korean M/V WOO YANG BLUE (2,550 gross), Vladivostok for Kunsan with steel scrap, was in collision with the Chinese M/V JIN JU (2,622 gross), Kwangyang for Vladivostok in ballast, off Pohang, in about lat 36 28N, long 129 52 E, Aug 8. Woo Yang Blue sank & all her crew rescued safely. Jin Ju sustained bow damage & is at Pohang outer anchorage for investigation. (Wed. Aug. 9 2000)

The Confederate submarine CSS H.L. Hunley was lifted from the Atlantic Ocean on Aug. 8, more than 135 years after it became the 1st sub to sink an enemy warship and then sank. The submarine went down with 9 crew members in 1864 after ramming a spar with a charge of black powder into the hull of the Union blockade vessel USS Housatonic. To raise the vessel, sitting in 30 feet of water about 4 miles off Sullivans Island, divers attached slings around it from a steel superstructure that was placed above the sub earlier. The minute the superstructure broke the surface, Confederate re-enactors fired a canon volley from Sullivans Island at Breach Inlet where the Hunley left on its ill fated voyage on Feb. 17, 1864. (Tues. Aug. 8 2000)

A 13-ft. wooden lion-shaped figurehead from a 17th century ship has washed up on a remote Arctic island off north Norway, a region once exploited for whaling by European nations. The figurehead was found by a man clearing rubbish from a remote beach at Prince Karls Forland, part of the Norwegian archipelago of Svalbard. The name of the ship, of which no other trace was found, 1s unknown. (Tues. Aug. 8 2000)

The Greek M/V ANANGEL ENDEAVOUR (14,156 gross), Alexandria for New Orleans was in collision with the Russian bulk carrier/container vessel M/V IVAN SUSANIN (14,141 gross), Mantyluoto for New Orleans, in the South-West Pass area, New Orleans, Aug 6. Anangel Endeavour holed above & below waterline. Both vessels proceeding to anchorage. (Mon. Aug. 7 2000)

At least 8 sailors died & 3 were reported missing on Aug. 5 when the Uruguayan Navy minesweeper 'Valiente' sank after being cut in two by the Panamanian-flagged freighter M/V Skyros. The incident took place at 0435 LT some 11 nautical miles (18 km) south of Cabo Polonio, or 150 miles (241 km) east of Uruguay's capital city Montevideo. The 179-foot (55 meter) Uruguayan vessel was split in two by the Panamanian ship & sank in less than an hour. The cause of the accident is under investigation. Survivors were shuttled to nearby La Paloma port for treatment. Sea conditions in the area are normal, but there is a dense fog that is making rescue efforts difficult. (Sat. Aug. 5 2000)

Customs inspectors seized several thousand pounds of marijuana concealed in a pungent shipment of minced garlic aboard the 300-foot cargo ship M/V Stadt Kiel at the Port of Miami on Aug. 4. Inspectors targeted the vessel for special scrutiny when it docked in Miami after receiving background information. Inside a cargo container full of minced garlic, they found rice bags full of marijuana. The ship was China for Miami by way of Kingston, Jamaica. It was the Jamaica stop, man. (Fri. Aug 4 2000)

The Cyprus M/V HALSINGLAND (3,845 gross), Hull for Hamburg, had engine failure in lat 53 57.41N, long 04 29.49E & anchored to effect repairs Aug 3. Taken in tow by tug Bremen Aug 4 bound Elsfleth. (Fri. Aug. 4 2000)

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On 27 July 2000 at 2145 hours LT in position 01 45.2N 102 32.5E (Malacca Straits) 8 pirates, armed with long knives, boarded a container vessel & stole cash & personal items belonging to the Master & crew. The pirates took the Electrician hostage during the attack. After the attack the pirates fled in a motor boat. (Fri. Aug. 4 2000)

On 24 July 2000 at 2210 LT in position 00 35.7N 103 51.7E, Eastern Sumatra, Indonesia, 10 pirates armed with guns boarded a tanker & held hostage the crew until 0810 LT on 26.07.2000. Pirates subsequently released the crew & escaped in a fishing boat with crew belongings & cash. No injuries to crew. (Fri. Aug. 4 2000)

On 24 July 2000 at 2005 LT berthed at Belawan container terminal, Indonesia. Pirates boarded a container ship via the bow using a line with a hook attached. Duty crew spotted them & raised the alarm but pirates broke into the store & stole ship's stores. When crew mustered on deck the pirates jumped overboard & escaped in their motorboat. (Fri. Aug. 4 2000)

On 24 July 2000 at 0920 LT in position 13:06N - 043:05E, Southern tip of the Red Sea. While underway 2 speed boats with a speed of about 30 knots approached a bulk carrier. One boat came very close & the other remained near by. The ship sounded the general alarm & the crew turned on the fire hoses. The high pressure jets from the fire hoses prevented boarding & the boats left. 15 minutes later the ship encountered another attempted attack by 2 speedboats that failed to board because of crew alertness.(Fri. Aug. 4 2000)

On 24 July 2000 at 0030 UTC in position 12:57N - 043:10E, 8.5 miles off the Ethiopian coast, Southern Red Sea. Three small boats approached a ship from the stern when she was at the northern end of the traffic lane. The boats, 5 to 8 meters in length had a speed of about 12 knots. The boats turned away after the alert crew directed searchlights at them. (Fri. Aug. 4 2000)

Canada Attacks U.S.! -- (SEE Aug. 2, below) -- Canadian troops have stormed on board the U.S.-owned cargo ship M/V GTS Katie on Aug. 3after a high-seas standoff in which hundreds of millions of dollars of Canadian military equipment had effectively been held hostage. "At approximately 1:45 p.m. today the Canadian navy began boarding the vessel on orders of the government of Canada," a Defense spokesman said. The s[pokesperson was unable to say if there were any casualties, but the owners had pledged the Ukrainian crew would not resist. The Katie was the focus of a bitter commercial tug-of-war between its owner & the firm that chartered the vessel to transport the equipment. The squabble drew in the Canadian government, which grew increasingly impatient to get its cargo of 590 tanks & other military vehicles back from Kosovo -- about 10% of the army's entire hardware. The cargo ship is owned by Maryland-based Third Ocean Marine Navigation, which had halted the vessel in the North Atlantic to try to force Montreal-based Andromeda Navigation to pay what it was due. Andromeda denies wrongdoing. The haggling was apparently over a mere US$100,000 -- compared to the US$151M value of the cargo. But the whole saga proved irritating & embarrassing for Ottawa, which wanted its shipment back but which also faced criticism for having to rely on private companies or foreign nations to fulfill its wide-ranging peacekeeping operations. It also wanted to bring home 3 Canadian soldiers who were accompanying the cargo. Canada Defense says that at 1 a.m. the Katie had weighed anchor & started steaming west from its position S. of Newfoundland toward the Cabot Strait and in the direction of Quebec, its original destination. It was shadowed by the destroyer HMCS Athabaskan & the frigate HMCS Montreal. WOW! (Thurs. Aug. 3 2000)

The United Kingdom M/V Global Mariner (12,778 gross), from Matzas with steel coils, was in collision with the Cyprus container vessel M/V Atlantic Crusader (7,366 gross), Boulogne for Venezuela, at the Sidor Terminal, Mile 194, River Orinoco, Aug 2. Global Mariner sustained flooding in Nos. 2 &3 holds & sank. All crew safe. The ship is now lying in shallow water with part of its superstructure above the surface. Decisions are still being made regarding its salvage & whether it will be written off by its insurers & an investigation is underway. The Global Mariner was under control of the harbor pilot & was being manoeuvred by 2 tugs at the time of the collision. The former Int'l Transport Workers' Federation exhibition vessel, which completed its year-long world tour earlier in the year, was being used as a training ship for British cadets while carrying out commercial operations. The ship had been trading around the Caribbean since the start of the summer. The Orinoco river channel is not being severely obstructed by the sunken ship & remains open to traffic. (Thurs. Aug. 3 2000)

The Netherlands general cargo vessel M/V VALSIM (3,433 gt), en route to Bulgaria, had fire break out in her engine-room while transitting the Bosporus Jul 31. The fire was extinguished by the vessel's crew but not before some damage had been sustained to the machinery. (Wed. Aug. 2 2000)

A 166-foot supply ship ran into the offshore rig Dolphin 105 about 2 a.m.Aug.1 shearing off the metal pilot house & cutting off the legs of a man inside. A Coast Guard crew rescued Ronnie Chambers, 23, of Mobile, Ala., who is in fair condition. The rig is about 100 miles southwest of New Orleans, & 55 miles south of Patterson. The Coast Guard said lights on it were burning at the time of the accident. (Wed. Aug. 2 2000)

Rescue teams have called off a search for 2 crew members missing after the St Vincent-registered M/V Valea Asre (6,441 gross) sank in lat 15 45N, long 52 58E off the coasts of Oman and Yemen.. Twenty-two crew were rescued after the cargo vessel reported a crack in her port side & sank on Aug. 1. Rough seas had hampered rescue efforts. The vessel went down in Yemeni waters, about 50 km (31.1 miles) off the coast of Salalah in southern Oman. Survivors have been taken to the neighbouring Gulf Arab state of the UAE. All crew members aboard the ship were Indian nationals. Official said crew members reported seeing their two missing colleagues go under after being swept away by choppy waters. ((Wed Aug 2 2000)

Perhaps Should You Just Blast 'Em? -- The M/V GTS Katie has anchored off Newfoundland & its American owners have refused to deliver cargo of Canadian military gear until they are paid the money they say they are owed. Two Canadian warships, the destroyer HMCS Athabaskan & frigate HMCS Montreal are close by the cargo. The American owner of the Katie has decided "he's not going to move until paid," a Defense Dept. spokesman said. The ship has dropped anchor about 80 miles off the southeast tip of Newfoundland island. The American demands to be paid for moving Canadian fighting hardware back from Kosovo. "Because of the situation of unresolved contractual obligations we have no intention of raising the anchor until we have some kind of resolution,'" said Peter Margan, president of ship owner Third Ocean Marine Navigation. The ship is carrying 500 military vehicles - including tanks & armored personnel carriers - & tons of other equipment. Katie was contracted to bring the equipment back from Kosovo, where it was deployed with Canadian peacekeepers. Three Canadian soldiers assigned to guard the cargo have spent the last 2 weeks on board the ship watching videos & waiting for settlement of the contract dispute between the shipowner & Andromeda Navigation of Montreal, which chartered the ship. The amount of money in dispute is not currently available to The Cargo Letter. The Katie was due in Montreal in mid-July, but it has been circling in the Atlantic for 2 weeks. The Canadian Defense Dept. routinely charters foreign-flag ships & aircraft to haul equipment overseas. The Canadian Navy has no transports equipped to carry heavy armor & the Canadian Air Force's C-130 Hercules transports are limited to about 20 tons of cargo. (Wed. Aug 2 2000)

The Russian trawler F/V Spitak was seized Aug 2 in the Bering Sea for fishing inside U.S. waters. Coast Guard USCGC Acushnet on Aug 1 spotted the 150-foot Spitak 800 yards inside the 200-mile U.S. economic zone. The Coast Guard found about 150 pounds of several kinds of fish aboard the vessel. The trawler will be turned over to the National Marine Fisheries Service. The captain & 2 crew were to be handed over to Immigration & Naturalization Service agents for processing back to Russia. (Wed. Aug. 2 2000)

The St.Vincent & Grenadines M/V VALEA ASRE (6,441 gross) developed crack in portside hull & sank in lat 15 45N, long 52 58E, Aug 1. 22 crew rescued. 2 missing. Search hampered by rough sea conditions. (Wed Aug 2 2000)

A Dutch-registered vessel received a mayday call at 3:00 a.m. (0100 GMT) on Aug. 1 & rescued 22 crew from Turkish freighter M/V Hasat (12,793 dwt) stranded off the Italian coast after a fire broke out in the ship's engine room. Vessel taken under tow to the port of Reggio Calabria, on the toe of Italy. The vessel sank 300 miles off the Italian coast after developing a hole in the stern. All the crew were taken off by the Dutch ship M/V Gouwediep without injury. (Tues Aug 1 2000)

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Vessel Loss Dispatches For July 2000

Clean-up vessels have now completed pumping oil from the sunken wreck of the tanker M/T Erika, ending threats of fresh pollution to France's Atlantic coast. The oil giant, which had chartered the Maltese-registered Erika and was in charge of the pumping, said 10,080 tons of the heavy fuel oil had been recovered. The tanker broke up & sank off Brittany on December 12, spewing up to 15,000 tons of oil onto the rocky shorelines, oyster beds & popular sandy beaches. The pumping operation began on July 3, & had been expected to last into Sept. The 2 sections of the sunken ship lie about 10 km (six miles) apart & some 70 km (44 miles) offshore. The salvage vessels extracted 4,610 tons of oil from the leaking stern section & 5,470 tons from the bow section. (Mon July 31 2000)

The Philippines ro-ro ferry M/V TRANS-ASIA (3,797 gross), Cagayan de Oro for Cebu with pssengers & cargo, had engine-room fire off Sulawan Point, Laguidingan, Misamis Oriental, Jul 29. Towed to Cagayan de Oro same day. (Mon July 31 2000)

The 3,797-ton passenger-cargo vessel M/V Trans Asia 1 inter-island ship caught fire but all 520 passengers aboard were safe. The vessel was on its way from southern Cagayan de Oro city to Cebu city in central Philippines on July 29 night when fire broke out in its engine room. A spokesman for the shipowners, Trans Asia Shipping, said all passengers were unhurt & had been transferred to a sister vessel to be brought to Cebu. The distressed ship was towed back to port in Cagayan de Oro. (Sun. July 30 2000)


On 22. July 2000 at 0050 LT at position 13 06N 080 20E, Chennai Anchorage, India, pirate boarded a tanker from forecastle. He tried to steal ship's stores. Duty crew noticed him & alarm was raised. The pirate jumped over board & escaped in a waiting motor boat taking with him 2 fire hoses. (Fri July 28 2000)

On 20. July 2000 at 2245 LT at position 01 50.2N 102 22.5E, Malacca Straits, 6 pirates armed with long knives boarded a LPG vessel. They tied up the crew & threatened to kill them if they did not cooperate. The pirates stole ship's cash about US$10,000 & other valuables from the crew. (Fri July 28 2000

On 22 July 2000 at 2200 LT at Mid Channel, Malacca Straits, 6 pirates in a fast craft, white color, silent engine, approached a bulk carrier from port quarter & tried to board using a bamboo hook. Attack was aborted due to the presence of the crew on deck. (Fri July 28 2000)

A massive hydraulic door crushed a crewman to death aboard cruise ship M/V Norwegian Sky near Alaska early July 26 morning. The death of Jai Ming Dai, 49, of Shanghai, China, being investigated by the Coast Guard & the Alaska State Police. Accident occurred in interior work area of the ship closed to passengers. About 2,000 passengers & 750 crew members were aboard approaching Haines, north of Juneau. The large hydraulic, watertight doors seal off sections of the ship in the event of fire or flooding, & are designed to close slowly to prevent people from being caught in them. (Thurs July 27 2000)

The bulk carrier M/V ELEVIT (16,683 gt, built 1977) grounded at Helen Mar Reef, Indonesia, on Jul 24. Refloated the next day & shifted to a safe anchorage, where patching work is now in progress. (Thurs July 27 2000)

A Viking crew which planned to mark the 1,000th anniversary of Leifur Eiriksson's voyage to the New World have abandoned ship in the Shetlands after engine trouble. Like many a Viking longboat before, the Skidbladner seemed doomed from the start of its journey on Sweden's west coast in early June. Swedish authorities first delayed issuing a seaworthiness certificate on safety grounds, & then the Skidbladner's engine stopped in the Shetland Isles. "The skipper went off to get it repaired and we didn't hear a thing," one of the eight crewmen, told the reporters. After a week of waiting the crew abandoned the Skidbladner, deciding they could not reach L'Anse aux Meadows in Newfoundland in time for celebrations this week to mark Eiriksson's arrival 1,000 years ago. The Islendingur, another Viking vessel skippered by a descendant of Eiriksson, has arrived at the windswept Newfoundland settlement from Iceland via Greenland. (Wed. July 26 2000)

M/V MEHMET SADIK (493 gt, built 1975) loaded with sand, sank as she waited anchored at Gelibolu port July 24. The reason for her sinking is so far unknown. All 7 crew managed to jump off the vessel. (Tues July 25 2000)

Indian bulk carrier M/V LOK PRAGATI (16,040 gt, built 1984), which left Port Elizabeth for Quebec on Jul 19 with cargo of manganese ore, sent distress signal on Jul 21 after reporting forecastle damage & water ingress. Tug John Ross began proceeding to casualty but returned after master advised on Jul 22 that pumps on board were coping with water in hull and that the vessel's position at that time was lat 34 26S, long 23 41E, bound Cape Town. (Sun July 23 2000)

Somali pirates have hijacked French-registered cargo M/V Net Express in the Gulf of Aden off the northeastern coast of Somalia. More than 15 gunmen in 3 speedboats boarded the vessel July 13 in full view of the village of Bargal, 30 kilometers (19 miles) east of the port of Bossaso, the witnesses said over VHF radio. According to fisherman, the ship had apparently been having engine problems because it had been moored in front of the village for 2 days before the attack. (Sun July 23 2000)

On 19. July 2000 at 2350 UTC at Dar-es-Salaam Anchorage, Tanzania, 5 pirates armed with knives boarded a tanker via anchor chain. They came aboard in an eight meter long, unlit motor boat, manned by 3 accomplices. Duty crew raised the alarm but the pirates broke the store and stole ship's stores. (Sun July 23 2000)

The Belize tanker M/T SUMMER STAR (1,271 gross). Kaohsiung for Zhanjiang with diesel, had explosion & fire in No.5 hold in Taiwan Strait, in lat 21 57N, long 117 16E, Jul 20. Fire extinguished same day. 2 crew dead. 2 injured. 1 missing. Towage negotiations under way Jul 21. (Fri July 21 2000)

CARGO ALERT: The Panamanian container vessel M/V PRIME VALUE (5,938 gross), Singapore for Calcutta, grounded on sand bank in bad weather at Lower Casper, near Sand Heads, Calcutta, Jul 19. Refloated, grounded again, took water, listed & sank. 7 crew rescued. 15 missing. Unconfirmed reports say 15 missing later found safe. No word on number of containers aboard. (Fri July 21 2000)

The Indian M/V SULTENG I (2,641 gross), Christmas Island for Indonesia with phosphate, took water in No.1 hold & sank off Christmas Island in about lat 09 17.5S, long 105 20.5E, Jul 18. 23 crew rescued. One missing. (Thurs July 20 2000)

On July 16 at 0100 LT in position: 13:04N - 080:22E at Chennai Anchorage, India, pirates from a motorboat boarded a bulk carrier using a line with a hook attached. They tried to steal ship's stores. The duty watchmen spotted them & raised the alarm. Pirates jumped overboard & escaped in their motorboat. (July 19 2000)

The Panamanian passenger vessel M/V PARADISE (70,390 gross) had problems with 1 engine at Miami Jul 17. Cruise terminated. Vessel requires dry-dock repairs. (Wed. July 19 2000)

The Panamanian passenger vessel M/V FUNCHAL (9,563 gross) had electrical fault in control panel while berthing at Gibraltar Jul 16. Assisted to berth by tug. Repairs under way Jul 17. Cruise terminated. (Tues. July 18 2000)

Sri Lanka's army & navy attacked Tamil Tiger rebel bases & bombed a supply ship, killing at least 18 guerrillas. The infantry attacked rebel positions July 16 at 4 places in northern Sri Lanka, where most of the island nation's 17-year-old Tamil separatist war is being fought. 14 rebels were killed & 3 soldiers were wounded. In a separate assault, navy gunboats fired at & destroyed a ship July 16 that was loaded with gasoline for the rebels. The navy captured the ship's crew. (Tues. July 18 2000)

The Spanish ro-ro ferries M/V CIUDAD DE CEUTA (2,753 gross), Algeciras for Tangier with passengers & vehicles, and M/V CIUDAD DE TANGER (9,481 gross), Tangier for Algeciras with passengers & vehicles, were in collision in thick fog in the Strait of Gibraltar Jul 16. 18 persons injured. 6 dead. Both vessels berthed at Algeciras same day. Both sustained damages. (Mon. July 17 2000)

On July 15 at 0001 LT at Nouadhibou bay, Mauritania, Pirates from small speed boats boarded a container vessel & stole ship's stores & equipment. Crew mustered on deck & pirates escaped in their boats. The master reported that he contacted Cigading authorities & Merak radio but there was no response. (Thurs. July 15 2000)

M/V Don Martin Senior V, sank near Bantayan island, 490 km (300 miles) south of Manila. Passing vessels and the coast guard rescued 92 passengers & crew of the Philippine ship. Four people are missing, including a 5 year-old boy. The vessel is owned by local firm Palacio Shipping Inc. The area has been lashed by rain & strong winds from a tropical depression. Coast guard said the ship had sent a distress signal early on July 14 because it was taking on water. (Fri July 14 2000)

THE INCREDIBLE July 14 YUKON COINCIDENCE - Two fleet naval vessels named "Yukon" - The San Diego Sea Gods? - Go Figure.

YUKON #1 -- Two U.S. naval vessels collided late July 13 while refueling 180 miles west of Oahu causing extreme structural damage to both ships but no injuries to crew, said the U.S. Pacific Fleet. The fleet oiler of the military Sea Lift Command USNS Yukon, crew 100, was refueling the USS Denver, an amphibious transport dock ship based in San Diego with crew 380, west of the Hawaiian island of Oahu when the incident occurred at about 6:15 p.m. LT /12:15 a.m. EDT. (Fri. 14 July 2000)

All this over the sinking of a sister?

THREE HOURS LATER - YUKON #2 -- The 366-foot, 2,890-ton former Canadian destroyer HMCS Yukon (not USNS Yukon, above) that was to be sunk on July 15 to build an artificial reef, an event expected to draw thousands of spectators, reached its undersea destination ahead of schedule July 14 after it took on water. The former Canadian warship sank about 12:30 Am. Friday, about 1 1/2 hours after she began taking on water off San Diego's Mission Beach. The U.S. Coast Guard rescued 3 caretakers from the ship. One water pump aboard the vessel had been unable to handle incoming water, which was pouring in at a rate of 500 gallons a minute. Caretakers were not injured. The cause of the sinking is under investigation, but authorities noted that at least 50 holes had been cut into the vessel to serve as passageways for divers. San Diego children were scheduled to participate in a ceremony on July 15 whereby the game "Battleship" would determine who would push "the button" to sink the ship. (Fri. July 14 2000)

LESSON: Just try to repeat this "Yukon coincidence" again! The historic Port of San Diego is well advised to treat it's ships well in the future, but the meaning of all this will elude us. WOW! Don't mess with the San Diego Sea Gods!

M/V BAUMWALL (3,999 gt, built 1998) drifted off her route & grounded off Kotka on Jul 12. No leakage or oil spill was reported. The vessel was subsequently towed into Kotka for inspection. (Fri July 14 2000)

The aluminium-alloy ro-ro cargo ferry M/V NGV ALISO sustained heavy weather damage 7 miles out of Leghorn, Jul 8-9, while en route to Bastia, with 444 passengers. The vessel returned to the port where damages were found to several portholes & to the roof of her upper deck. NGV Aliso was taken to Marseilles on Jul 11 & is expected that she will be out of action for about 10 days. (Thurs July 13 2000)

On July at 1500 UTC in position 15:39.3N - 041:26.5E, Southern Red Sea, 2 speed boats with 5 pirates in each attempted to come alongside a bulk carrier. Ship's crew mustered and turned on hoses. As a result the boats moved away. (July 13 2000)

M/V ORIENT PEARL (2,495 gt, built 1981) sank near Umashima after a collision with tanker M/T SHOWA MARU NO.5 (2998 gt, built 1993) off Dokaiwan Lighthouse, Fukunka Prefecture on Jun 25. P&I club currently arranging wreck removal. (Wed July 12 2000)


On July 7 2000 at 0258 LT at Samarinda River Roads, Indonesia. Four pirates armed with knives boarded a general cargo vessel from stern & stole a life raft. The duty officer noticed them & raised the alarm. When the duty policemen fired upon the pirates, they jumped overboard & escaped in a small wooden boat. (Tues July 11 2000)

On July 7 2000 at 0515 LT at position 00 49N 103 35.5E, Durian straits, Indonesia. Five pirates armed with long knives boarded a container vessel, entered 2nd officer's cabin, tied him with plastic rope & stole all his money, gold ring and personal effects and asked him to call the captain. The chief officer saw the pirates & raised the alarm. The pirates jumped into the sea & escaped in a speed boat. (Tues July 11 2000)

The United Arab Emirates passenger/general cargo M/V WURWOOD, ex AL JAZYA, (5,426 gross) had engine trouble off Oman, in lat 17 30N, long 56 20E, Jul 9. Still anchored in same position Jul 10. Tug Lulu proceeding. (Tues July 11 2000)

PIRATES shot & wounded a crewman on board the reefer M/V Minnesota after it was boarded at anchor in Puerto Bolivar, Ecuador. Other ships are reported to have anchored further out to sea after the incident. It is not known how badly injured the crew member is. (Sat. July 8 2000)

Buried Naval Treasure Found! -- A Loss From The Past ........ as the placid waters of Indonesia's Brantas River conceal an astonishing treasure-trove of aviation history -- an entire squadron of Dutch naval warplanes scuttled by retreating allied troops during the dark days of 1942. An ambitious plan to recover the 8 Fokker T.IVs & 5 C.11s -- the only surviving examples of either type will now go forward. The T.IV was a twin-engine torpedo bomber of which only 33 were built. In contrast, the C.11s were elegant biplanes that served as fleet artillery spotters & were typically based aboard cruisers. But they were removed from Dutch warships in 1941 because of fears fuel tanks could ignite the vessels if hit. That proved fatal for the Allies in the pivotal Battle of the Java Sea, which sounded the death knell for Dutch rule in the East Indies, today's Indonesia. Deprived of aerial reconnaissance, a hapless Allied task force blundered into the Japanese invasion fleet, whose patrol aircraft had shadowed it throughout. Caught unaware, the task force was annihilated. Following that disaster, all Allied forces were ordered to evacuate to Australia. Planes that did not have the range to make the trip were ordered destroyed. Lacking demolition charges & frantic to escape, Dutch airman at the Brantas base, 500 miles east of Jakarta, simply punched holes in the Fokkers' floats & wings. The 13 aircraft sank into the river intact, settling in upright positions on the bottom. A scan of the riverbed reveals the aircraft in remarkably good condition with silt from a newly built dam protecting their aluminum skin. Villagers remember that before the dam was constructed they were able to glimpse the ghostly warplanes -- their machine guns still aimed at the sky -- whenever dry seasons caused water levels to drop. Surprisingly, scavengers never disturbed the site. WOW! (Sat. July 8 2000)


On 02.07.2000 at 2059 LT at berth no 9, port Conakry, Guinea. A general cargo vessel was attacked by pirates. Further details are awaited. (Fri. July 7 2000)

0n 02.07.2000 at 0015 LT at Penang container terminal, Malaysia. A container vessel at anchor was boarded by 2 pirates. The pirates were spotted by duty seamen who informed bridge and subsequently alarm was raised. On hearing whistle & fire alarm, pirates jumped overboard and escaped. (Fri. July 7 2000)

The Maltese M/V PIONEER SKY, 11,212 gt (built 1981), had main engine breakdown June 25 and towed to an anchorage off Buenos Aires, where arrived July 2. Repairs completed & awaiting orders. (Fri. July 7 2000)

The Antigua & Barbuda general cargo vessel M/V SOUTHERN AMELIA II (4,410 gt), on her maiden voyage from Shanghai to Oregon, sustained severe structural damage, with resulting ingress of water, due to "Typhoon Kirogi" in lat 17 18.9N, long 132 55.17E, on Jul 4. Several vessels proceeding. (Thurs. July 6 2000)

New York Harbor Pool Table -- as the ocean liner RMS Queen Elizabeth II got into a fender-bender with 2 moored warships July 5, a day after all 3 vessels took part in the 4th of July festivities. The QE2 was entering a Hudson River slip when it bumped the Japanese warship Kashima, which in turned banged into the British warship HMS Manchester. Damage was slight: scraped paint on both the QE2 & the Kashima, scrapes & some bent metal on the Manchester. No injuries. U.S. Coast Guard is investigating. Thousands of tall ships & other vessels sailed through New York Harbor on U.S. Independence Day. (Wed. July 5 2000)

A huge oil slick leaking from the Japanese M/T Takeo Maru that sank more than 20 years ago is lapping against a port on Russia's Sakhalin Island in the Pacific. Winds 1st blew the 1.8-mile-long, 300 yard-wide slick out to sea, but the gusts reversed course & sent the oil towards the piers of Shakhtyorsk. Boats splashed absorbent chemicals on the spill & used booms to control its flow. It is too early to assess ecological damage. The Japanese ship sank off Sakhalin Island during a storm in 1979 with its fuel tanks full. The oil leaked because a rusty tank had ruptured. Divers previously attempted to weld shut small holes in the tanks. Work was slowed by a dispute over whether Russia or Japan should pay for it. (Wed. July 5 2000)

Liberian oil/chemical tanker M/T TIMASHEVSK (26,218 tons gross, built 1996) sustained a damaged propeller after striking navigation buoy while leaving New York harbor on Jun 30. Coast Guard boarding party inspecting vessel discovered 125 kilos of cocaine on board. The drugs were confiscated but no crew members were charged as the drugs were found in a compartment on an outer section of the vessel's stern & it was unclear whether the crew knew of it's existence. (Mon. July 3 2000)

A true vessel disaster -- as a Walnut Creek company failed to find an investment angel June 30 to help it bring the SS Lurline -- the world's oldest ocean liner -- back to San Francisco's waterfront. The Ocean Steamship Co. had until Friday to raise at least US$750,000 to buy the vessel, which has been berthed in Tampa, Fla., for the past five years. A year ago, the company introduced its US$45M plan to refurbish the Lurline into a luxury floating hotel and dock it by San Francisco's Pier 35 as a monument to the days when San Francisco was a major port city. The Lurline, built 69 years ago for the Matson Navigation Co., carried thousands of travelers between San Francisco and Honolulu in its heyday. It is still in good shape, said the ship's agent in Tampa. On Monday morning July 3, a tugboat will tow the Lurline to a scrap yard in India. (Sat. July 1 2000)

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Vessel Loss Dispatches For June 2000

The Barbados diving support vessel M/V BALMORAL SEA (1,281 gross) had fire break out during welding work at New Orleans Jun 27. Vessel rolled over onto starboard side during fire-fighting operations. No injuries. Minor spillage of fuel oil. (Fri. June 30 2000)

M/V Gasgow Maersk Takes Her Bows - a big maritime hit with pictures in our Gallery of Cargo Loss. Docking difficulty results in dock strike at Port of Oakland. Exxclusive photos. Click on the vessel name. (Thurs. June 29 2000)

The Indonesian M/V Cahaya Bahari carrying almost 500 people, many fleeing sectarian violence in the Maluku islands, sank June 29 in remote waters in eastern Indonesia. The National Search & Rescue Agency said the wooden-hulled ship went down in stormy weather, which was hampering rescue efforts. It is feared many people have died. Initial reports said the vessel had been overloaded with passengers. Of the 492 aboard, 290 were refugees from Duma, a Christian village where more than 100 people were killed June 19 in an attack by Muslim fighters. The ship also carried 186 regular passengers & 16 crew members along with cargo. (Thurs. June 29 2000)

The German container vessel M/V CONTSHIP CHAMPION (31,206 gross), Gioao Tauro for Thamesport, had fire in No.5 hold off south-east Portugal, in lat 36 08.5N, long 06 44.8W, Jun 24. Fire extinguished same day. No injuries. Proceeding to Thamesport. ETA Jun 27. (Wed. June 28 2000)

M/V RIAD M. (3,237 gt, built 1965) had engine fire in approximately lat 35 25N, long 34 55E, Jun 26. Crew abandoned vessel & picked up by tanker M/T BT Stream. Crew reboarded vessel after fire apparently died down, & reported fire extinguished. Vessel to be towed to Syria. (Tues. June 27 2000)

Tamil rebels carried out a suicide attack on the Colombo registered M/V Mercs Uhana carrying food & other items for government troops and civilians in the north Monday. Sri Lanka navy boats rescued 21 of 28 crew members, who abandoned ship. An unspecified number of rebels on the suicide boat were believed dead. Mercs Uhana was attacked by rebel suicide cadres as it tried to anchor off Point Pedro. The 2,850-ton ship was carrying food, 500 tons of cement & other supplies from the capital, Colombo, to Point Pedro for the 40,000 troops stationed in the Jaffna peninsula fighting the separatist rebels. Some of the food also was meant for 500,000 civilians trapped in the fighting. (Mon. June 26 2000) UPDATE: M/V Mercs Uhana, chartered by private traders to transport food & essential items to the northern Jaffna peninsula & attacked by a suicide boat of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) rebels on June 26, now sank with all it's 2500 tons of cargo. (Wed. June 28)

Liberian LPG carrier M/T NORGAS DISCOVERER (7,173 gt, built 1971), Oita for Antwerp, was in collision with Bahamian tanker M/T GREEK FIGHTER (62,670 gt, built 1974), on voyage from China, in lat 03 13N, long 100 35E, on June 24. Norgas Discoverer began taking water & listed 7 degrees to port. Vessel also sustained superstructure damage. Tug will escort Norgas Discoverer to Singapore. No significant damage to Greek Fighter. (Sun. June 25 2000)

Container vessel M/V HANJIN BREMEN, (37,134 gt, built 1991), which arrived Hamburg on Jun 8, declared General Average in respect of a fire on board while on voyage from the Far East. Understood some containers were effected by heat/water. (Sat. June 24 2000)

The South African tanker M/T Treasure carrying 1,300 tons of oil sank June 23 six miles off Cape Town, unleashing a large slick threatening Robben Island, where Nelson Mandela was imprisoned 17 years. The ship had developed a 56-foot-wide hole in the hull, but its cause was not immediately clear. All 29 crew members, most Chinese, were airlifted to safety as the Panamanian-registered Treasure - China for Brazil - went down before dawn. The oil did not pose an immediate threat to the popular beaches along the coast. But the 20-square-mile slick was a danger to Robben Island, a rocky outcrop where political prisoners were incarcerated by the apartheid government. Mandela, now the former president, spent 17 of his 27 years in prison there. The island is now a museum and World Heritage Site & home to a large colony of penguins & other birds. The South African Maritime Safety Authority said air patrols were trying to determine the direction the slick was moving, while patrol vessels were trying to contain it. South Africa's last major oil spill was in 1994 when the bulk ore carrier M/V Apollo Sea sank 40 miles north of Cape Town, killing 36 crew members & causing extensive environmental damage. The Treasure was carrying twice as much oil as the Apollo Sea. (Fri. June 23 2000)

The Lithuanian refrigerated M/V LINKUVA (4,160 gross), on ballast voyage, had main engine failure about 220 nautical miles S.W. of Acapulco during "Hurricane Carlotta" Jun 21. 18 persons on board. Unlocated & all contact lost Jun 22. The 330-foot, 4,160 gross ton Linkuva carrying 18 people was last reported to be rolling 35 to 40 degrees in heavy storm conditions created by Hurricane Carlotta. Carlotta was upgraded to a Category 4 storm early June 21 according to Mexico's National Weather Service, which put the storm about 240 miles S.E. of Mexico's coastal state of Michoacan. Pray. (Fri. June 23 2000)

More than 180 people are missing after an overloaded passenger ferry capsized in a fast-flowing stretch of the Yangtze river in Hejiang county in the S.W. Sichuan province on June 22. The vessel was carrying an estimated 200 day-trippers to a country fair, Xinhua news agency said. Only 20 or so passengers had been rescued & 7 bodies had been pulled from the waters. State television reported that more than 180 people were still unaccounted for. All those aboard were tossed into the raging waters after the vessel capsized in the S.W. province of Sichuan. The overturned vessel was dragged several miles down the river by the force of the current. None of the passengers had been issued tickets for the voyage, so there was no record of the exact number of people on board. The mighty Yangtze is one of the world's most treacherous waterways, narrowing in places into surging torrents that race between jagged rocks. It is also a major transport artery from the western interior to eastern cities as far as Shanghai on the coast. In November last year, 280 people were drowned when a ferry caught fire & capsized in freezing conditions off the coast of Shandong in one of China's worst shipping disasters in recent years. (Thurs. June 22 2000) Update. Chinese authorities have arrested the captain & the owner of the overloaded ferry that capsized in the Yangtze river, leaving more more than 114 people still missing. (Sat. June 24 2000)

Gold recovered from a sunken ship brought in more than US$2.9M on June 20 during the opening session of a 2 day auction at Sotheby's. The SS Central America was carrying three tons of California gold when it sank off the coast of South Carolina in 1857 during a hurricane. More than 400 people were killed. The gold consisted of uncirculated coins from the U.S. Mint in San Francisco & gold bricks weighing nearly 80 pounds each Researchers from Ohio found the ship and began removing the gold in 1989. The lots for auction at Sotheby's were put up for sale by the companies that had underwritten the ship's voyage in the 19th century. Ninety-two lots were offered for auction, ranging from gold bars to nuggets. The total sale for the night was US$2,988,425, above the expected sale of US$2.7M. The top-seller was a gold bar, weighing in at 652.23 ounces, which sold for US$308,000. A large gold & quartz nugget that had a pre-sale estimate of between US$15,000 & US$25,000 went for US$121,000. (Wed. June 21 2000)

U.S. Army Engineers are using a dredge to clear a temporary channel in the Calcasieu River, off Lake Charles, Louisiana, where a dry-dock sank on Jun 13. Several tankers have been prevented from entering or leaving the Port of Lake Charles. (Tues. June 20 2000)

The bodies of 58 people thought to be asylum-seekers were found on board a truck on June 19 in the English Port of Dover. A Home Office (interior ministry) spokesman said the bodies had been found in the rear of a Dutch-registered vehicle at about midnight. Two people were found alive and taken to hospital, where they are expected to survive. The nationalities of those found aboard the truck were not immediately known. The discovery was made by customs officers during a search of the truck after it disembarked from a cross-Channel ferry just before midnight. It had traveled from the Belgian port of Zeebrugge. Dover, a major landing point for ferries from France & Belgium, has been a major entry point for asylum-seekers, many of whom come from eastern Europe. The British government introduced fines earlier this year for people who try to smuggle illegal immigrants into the country in a bid to stamp out the practice. (Mon. June 19 2000)

The Greek tanker M/T SLOPS (10,815 gross) had explosion & fire amidships while at permanent moorings at Kynosoura, Salamis Island, Jun 15. Fire under control Jun 16. 1 dead. (Sunday June 18 2000)

A thousand years after Leif Eriksson landed in North America, an Icelandic ship captain set sail June 17 in a replica of a Viking boat to follow his ancestor's route from Iceland to the New World. A crowd cheered when the replica vessel Islendingur - Icelander - departed from Reykjavik's old harbor on Iceland's National Day. Vessel Capt. Gunnar Marel Eggertsson guided the ship along the beginning of its route from Iceland to Greenland to the shores of Canada & New England. "Icelanders do not take credit for discovering America," Prime Minister David Oddsson said at the vessel's departure. "But we do reckon that we played a significant role in the 1st contact between native Americans & Europeans 1,000 years ago." Determined to re-enact the voyage, Eggertsson designed & built the Islendingur of oak & pine from Norway & Sweden. The crew counts 9 experienced sailors. In the Viking era, a battleship like Islendingur would have had a crew of 70, including a double shift of 32 oarsmen for a quick getaway. This time, it will rely on a motor. The 2,600-mile voyage will take 4 months, including more than 20 scheduled stops. On July 15, the ship is to arrive in Brattahlid, the site of Eriksson's settlement in west Greenland, founded in A.D. 985. Five days later it will depart from there for North America, as did Eriksson. (Sat. June 17 2000)

Bad Day For The SAS: An Englishman attempting to paddle a kayak across the Atlantic was rescued off Canada's eastern coast, 31 hours after he abandoned his capsized & flooded boat. Peter Bray, a 43-year-old ex-military officer from Plymouth, England, left St. John's on June 16 planning to kayak 3,000 miles to Ireland. After rescuing Bray on June 17 night the kayak had begun leaking & capsized. Bray survived in a rubber life-raft that was attached to the kayak. The coast guard began searching for Bray, after his 26-foot kayak was spotted about 25 miles northeast of St. John's. Bray was found by coast guard in the raft 10 miles north of where his kayak capsized. A coast guard airplane spotted a flare he sent up. He was ''weak & wobbly" but "otherwise fine." Bray is a veteran of Britain's elite Special Air Service military unit. "His training had taught him to live with the sea". (Sat. June 17 2000)

New efforts to protect the wreck of the USS Monitor are getting under way off the North Carolina coast. A joint National Ocean Service & U.S. Navy expedition began this week & is expected to continue for 4 weeks, the National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration. The Civil War ironclad Monitor became famous for its battle with the Confederate ironclad CSS Virginia. The Monitor later sank in a storm. A marine sanctuary 16 miles off the coast at Cape Hatteras now surrounds its remains. The new expedition is designed to place grout bags beneath the hull of the deteriorating vessel to prevent sections of the ship from dropping several feet to the sea floor, which would damage or destroy much of the material still contained within the hull. The vessel lies upside down in 240 feet of water, resting on its displaced turret. Long-range preservation plans for the Monitor call for placing grout bags under the hull & recovering major components of the wreck, including the engine & turret. The propeller was recovered in 1998. The engine will be prepared for recovery during this expedition. No specific date has been set for recovery of the turret. The work will be carried out by Navy divers based at Little Creek, Va. (Sat. June 17 2000)


On June 10 2000 at 1215 LT at Tg. Priok anchorage, Indonesia. Eight pirates armed with steel pipes boarded a container vessel from the stern. They were noticed & alarm was raised. The pirates immediately left the vessel. (Fri. June 16 2000)

On June 9 2000 at 2220 LT at Chittagong Roads, Bangladesh. Two pirates armed with long knives boarded a general cargo vessel from the stern & lowered 2 mooring ropes into the water. A small wooden boat dragged the ropes slowly. Duty AB spotted the incident & alerted the crew. On seeing the duty AB, the pirates threatened him with knives. The duty AB resisted with a steel bar & the pirates escaped with ropes. (Fri. June 16 2000)

.On June 6 2000 at 0215 LT, 4 nm from breakwater, Chennai, India. Six pirates in a speed boat came alongside to port side of a heavy lift vessel. Three pirates boarded & tried to gain access to the accommodation. The AB on watch noticed them & informed the duty officer who raised the general alarm & the crew mustered at emergency stations. The pirates jumped in to the boat & fled towards the seaward direction. A police launch came to investigate at 0300 hours. (Fri. June 16 2000)

On June 5 2000 at 0300 LT at Belawan anchorage, Indonesia. Two pirates armed with long knives boarded a tanker via anchor chain from a small wooden boat. Duty AB noticed them & raised the alarm. On seeing the alert crew, the pirates jumped overboard & fled in their boat. (Fri. June 16 2000)

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The Maltese government & the Mediterranean island's Catholic bishops reacted angrily on June 14 to plans by a Dutch doctor to set up an abortion ship in Int'l waters. Amsterdam-based Rebecca Gomperts told The Times of Malta newspaper that she planned to offer abortions on a ship moored in Int'l waters close to countries where abortion is illegal, including Malta. Social Policy Minister Lawrence Gonzi said in radio interviews the plan was "horrendous." He said that although the abortions would not be carried out in Malta, criminal action would be taken against anyone organizing or helping to arrange the service. The bishops issued a statement calling on the government & all those responsible to ensure that no one had anything to do with these "heinous murders." The Maltese people are seen as being strongly against abortion & all the island's political parties oppose its introduction. (Thurs. June 14 2000)

The Maltese M/V PETER (6,940 gross) bound Portugal with logs, in collision with French bulk carrier/container vessel M/V ADELINE DELMAS (23,275 gross) off Owndo, Gabon, Jun 8. Peter in sinking condition, crew abandoned ship & rescued safely. LOF signed. Adeline Delmas sustained no serious damage. (Tues. June 13 2000)

The Thailand ferry M/V Phuket Cruiser 2 taking more than 150 foreign tourists from a southern resort island to an outlying island in the Andaman Sea caught fire & sank June 12, but all aboard were rescued safely. The blaze broke out at about 9 a.m., an hour after the ship left the dock at Phuket island, 428 miles south of Bangkok, headed for Phi Phi Island. All 166 passengers & 3 crew members were rescued by the time marine police arrived. The flames later consumed the wooden hull of the boat & it sank. The vessel captain & engineer were arrested and charged with recklessness leading to damage of other people's property. (Mon. June 12 2000)

The Italian 15,000 ton M/V Med Star, bound for India's Kandla port in ballast on the western coast has been hijacked by a group of Iranian & Iraqi stowaway pirares who have threatened to blow up the ship. "We received a message from the local agents of the ship that a group of 14 stowaways have taken control over the vessel," Deputy Conservator of Kandla Port Trust, Praveen Chandra Chaturvedi told Reuters from Kandla. According to the message, the stowaways have threatened to blow up the vessel if it moved towards India,'' Chaturvedi said. The captain, who flashed a message to Kandla port on June 8, said the captors clandestinely boarded the vessel at the Iranian port of Bandar-e-Abbas, where the ship sailed from on June 7. The vessel was located some 150 nautical miles from Indian waters & about 275 miles from Kandla port on June 10 evening. "Right now it is difficult to say whether the ship is moving or it is anchored in the high seas. It is not clear if the hijackers had made any demands. The vessel with 20 crew was scheduled to arrive at Kandla port on June 12 evening to load 2000 tons of granite cargo. United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) were in radio contact with the hijackers who are asking to be transported to some European city, (Sat. June 10 2000)

The Australian Navy amphibious landing ship HMAS Manoora with 200 troops, 3 Black Hawk helicopters & 6 armored personnel carriers is sailing for the Solomon Islands to assist in evacuations of foreigners. The fighting involves indigenous Isatabus who in the past 18 months have been pushing thousands of migrant Malaitans off plots of land in Guadalcanal, the main island in this archipelago slightly smaller than Maryland. Warring Solomon Islands militias agreed on June 9 to a 14 day cease fire to allow a Commonwealth foreign ministers' visit this weekend aimed at restoring peace after an attempted coup. HMAS Manoora moved from Australian port of Townsville on June 8 & is expected in the Solomons capital Honiara by June 11 night. The Solomons are about 1,000 miles northeast of Australia. Prime Minister Bartholomew Ulufa'alu was released from house arrest on June 9 after being detained at gunpoint on June 2 by the Malaita Eagle Force militiamen who took over Honiara. This special ground includes Guadalcanal, the territory for which thousands of Americans made their ultimate sacrifice, foot by foot, minute by minute, in the defense of Australia against the Imperial Japanese Forces in World War 2. Tell it to the Marines. (Fri. June 9 2000)

Chinese police are checking to see if the Japanese 6,594 deadweight ton chemical tanker M/T Global Mars commandeered by pirates 4 months ago may have been found on its shores. The Global Mars with 17 people aboard left Malayasia on Feb. 22. The Panama registered ship's crew -- 7 South Koreans & 10 from Myanmar -- were found in mid-March on an island off Phuket, Thailand. South Korea's Maritime Affairs Ministry says the ship's last contact was on Feb. 22 when it was some 385 km (240 miles) north of Indonesia. The vessel was carrying a cargo of palm oil & is owned by Japan's Global Marine Service Co Ltd. Japanese shipping companies, stung by deadly pirate attacks in Southeast Asian seas, have been leading a movement to combat the seafaring criminals. The 1985-built chemical tanker has been the subject of a US$100,000 reward. (Fri. June 9 2000)

The Turkish vessel M/V FAKAZ-1, 702 gt (built 1974), which departed Karasu for Eregli, sent out a distress signal & sank in the Black Sea on June 6. Crew abandoned ship & rescued. (Fri. June 9 2000)

The tug Alex C, owned & operated by Bay State Towing, guiding the Panamanian-registered tanker M/T Posa Vina from Tosco Marine Terminal in East Boston struck & punctured tanker's port side 2 feet above the waterline at 8:30 a.m, causing some 50,000 gallons of heating oil to pour into Boston Harbor. (Thurs. June 8 2000)

The People's Republic of China vessel M/V HAI RONG, 5,168 gt (built 1978), in collision with bulk carrier M/V JOINT MIRIAM, 6,976 gt (built 1978), in lat 38 04N, long 122 23.5E, at 1820, local time, Jun 2. HAI RONG sank & all crew rescued. (Wed. June 7 2000)

Fighting between rival rebel factions on the Solomon Islands intensified on June 7, with one using a stolen gunboat to fire cannon rounds at coastal encampments set up by the other group. A rebel spokesman said his side killed 100 enemies. He said he received the information from colleagues who fired a machine gun from the gunboat directly into a crowd of people, as well from others on the ground watching. There had been about 300 to 400 armed men on the beach. ''There were no civilians.". ''They were all carrying weapons. They were not holding a picnic", said the rebels. There was no immediate way to confirm the rebel claim. A Solomon Islands government spokesman & New Zealand officials said there had been a gunboat attack in the morning, but they had no information about deaths. For 18 months, the rebel groups -- the Isatabu & Malaitans -- have skirmished on Guadalcanal, the country's main island and the scene of the historic battle between U.S. & Japanese forces in World War II. (Wed. June 7 2000)

The 15,000 g.t. Cambodian-flagged bulk carrier M/V Zeycan suffered damage to its starboard side after colliding with the 6,300 g.t. Maltese-flagged vessel M/V Kaleli Ana around 0000 GMT at the mouth of the Black Sea. There were no reports of injuries. Turkish Coast Guard is escorting the cargo vessels to the Bosphorus Straits. The Zeycan was in ballast toward Ukraine when it collided with the Maltese-flagged ship carrying steel to the Russian port of Novorossiysk. Turkey's Bosphorus & Dardanelles straits, linked by the Marmara Sea, are among the world's busiest shipping lanes and the site of frequent collisions. Tankers use the straits to transport oil from Russia & the Caucasus. Turkey opposes the heavy traffic, citing danger to Istanbul's 10 million residents, but is bound by the 1936 Montreaux Convention to provide free passage to all merchant ships in peacetime. A Russian-flagged tanker ran aground & split in two in the Marmara Sea off Istanbul in February. (Tues. June 6 2000)

Canadian bulk carrier M/V ALGOWOOD (22,558 gt, built 1981), while berthed at Bruce Mines, Ontario, loading stone on Jun 1, had structural problems & the vessel sank at the dock. About 15 feet of hull remains above water. No pollution was reported but oil booms have been deployed around the vessel. No injuries to crew. Salvage operation is expected to take at least a week. (Mon. June 5 2000)

The Norwegian m research vessel M/V RAMFORM VIKING (9,456 gross) contacted ground in lat 52 53N, long 04 36E, and lost her starboard propeller May 27. Diverted to Rotterdam for repairs. Still repairing May 31. (Fri. June 2 2000)

The U.S. Coast Guard said it expected to reopen the Houston Ship Channel late on June 1 after salvagers succeeded in raising the sunken tug boat Vecturian. A mile-long stretch of the channel, which links Houston to the Gulf of Mexico, was closed on Monday morning after the Vecturian sank in 35 feet of water. The channel is lined with oil refineries and petrochemical plants but refinery operators said the restriction of shipping had not impacted their operations. (Thurs. June 1 2000)

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Vessel Loss Dispatches For May 2000

A mile-long stretch of the Houston Ship Channel was closed to through traffic on May 30 because of the sunken 77-foot tugboat Vecturian. The channel, one of the nation's main shipping routes for oil & petrochemical products, was closed at 0705 LT between buoys 163 & 165 near Washburn Tunnel after the tug sank. The cause of the accident 1s not yet known, but that the vessel, owned by Capital Towing, was slowly leaking 25,000 gallons of diesel fuel that were in its tanks. Two crew were rescued from the vesel. Two thousand feet of containment booms are being used to hold the leaking diesel in place, but that 1,000 yards of water was covered with a light petroleum sheen. "It will be a while," the U.S. Coast Guard said when asked how long the channel was likely to be closed. (Wed. May 31 2000)

Six crewmen from the Norwegian 231-foot freighter M/V Nord Frakt are missing off the coast of central Portugal on May 30 following a collision with the South Korean M/V Hyundai Emperor, 725-foot container ship. The Nord Frakt laden with grain sank after the collision with Hyundai Emperor at the mouth of the river Tagus off Lisbon. The nationalities of the missing are not immediately known. A helicopter & 2 warships went quickly to the scene but found nothing but wreckage from the Norwegian vessel. The weather was clear at the time of the collision. (Tues. May 30 2000)

The Panamanian bulk carrier M/V COUNTESS (16,510 gross), China for Paradip with lam coke, had water ingress into engine-room at Paradip May 27. Cargo discharge commenced May 28. Pumping out still under way May 29. (Tues. May 30 2000)

The 80 ton private river charter M/V Rive Gauche carrying birthday party revelers slammed into a pillar of a bridge over the Seine in southwestern Paris, injuring 8 passengers. Police said tests showed that the captain's blood alcohol content exceeded the legal limit at the time of the accident, which occurred about 11:30 p.m. on May 28. He was being detained for questioning. About 60 people attending a private birthday party were aboard. The crew was forbidden to drink alcohol, and the caterer on board was not allowed to serve it to them. Right! (Mon. May 29 2000)

The 26,450-ton M/T Pratibha Yamuna, Bandar Mahshahr for South Korea in ballast, went up in flames night of May 27, about 341 miles west of the southern Japanese island of Amami Oshima. All 34 crew members of the Indian oil tanker were found May 28 by Chinese rescue boat. Amami Oshima is part of a chain of smaller islands stretching southwest of Kagoshima, which is 616 miles southwest of Tokyo. The Japanese coast guard received a fax from China's Rescue Coordination Center in Beijing saying a Chinese boat rescued the entire crew. The Japanese coast guard received a distress call from the Indian vessel on Saturday night & hour later, it was seen by a passing cargo ship, which reported the burning tanker had radioed about an explosion in its pump room. LOF signed & tug Hua Yi proceeding. Will tow to Shanghai. (Sun. May 28 2000)

M/V SKY 1 (1,069 gt, built 1966) developed a list of 30-40 degrees near Masirah Island on May 17, at which time the crew abandoned ship & were picked up by a passing vessel. (Sat. May 27 2000)

Tug AARSLEFF 105 (427 gt, built 1978) took on water, May 24, & was beached on Anholt Island to prevent her from sinking. (Fri. May 26 2000)

Tanker S/R LONG BEACH (94,000 gt, built 1987) was ordered back to Valdez on May 22 after developing a leak. Divers investigated the hull and found a three inch hairline fracture. Less than 10 gallons of oil had leaked out a spokeswoman said. The cargo has been transferred to another vessel. (Wed. May 24 2000)

A fire aboard cruise ship M/V Nieuw Amsterdam in Glacier Bay National Park burned for about 45 minutes, causing extensive damage, Coast Guard said. Vessel was in the northwestern end of the bay when fire was reported at about 9:40 a.m. The blaze was confined to the crew's quarters in the stern of the 704-foot vessel & extinguished after about 45 minutes, said Seattle-based Holland America Line. 10 cabins need to be repaired, big time. (Tues. May 23 2000)

M/V MAASBORG (2,905 gt, built 1974) had her motor stop 50 miles out from Esbjerg on May 20. M tug Storesund towed the casualty into Esbjerg, where she is now repairing. (Tues. May 23 2000)

Panamanian M/V BAO JI SHAN (3,957 tons gross, built 1984) grounded on reef outside Port Moresby harbor on May 21. Refloating attempt to be made with assistance of local tug. (Mon. May 22 2000)

The Maltese-flagged bulk carrier M/V Evelyn sank off Aden on today after catching fire earlier, Lloyds Shipping Intelligence Service said. The crew had already been evacuated from the 22,546 dwt vessel by rescue vessels & taken on board a chemical tanker. The Evelyn had been sailing from Novorossiysk, Russia, for Malaysia, carrying fertilizers. Its position was 12 59 N, 47 58 E, in the Gulf of Aden. (Sat. May 20 2000)

A pier holding a new open-air bar collapsed & plunged into the Delaware River at the Port of Philadelphia tonight, killing at least 3 people & injuring more than 24, with 7 missing. At least 30 people were on the pier when it dropped into the water about 8:25 p.m. A canvas tent over the pier also collapsed, covering many people who fell into the water. The pier held the new bar, "Heat", which is attached to a ballroom dancing area at the four masted S/V Moshulu restaurant or Eve McCarney, a converted vessel docked on the river. "Heat" opened this month. (Thurs. May 18 2000)

F/V HANNOVER (2,172 gt, built 1994) had a fire on board, approximately 280 nautical miles southwest of Iceland, May 14. The vessel, which may still be on fire, was towed into Reykjavik May 17, where firefighters are due to board her. (Thurs. May 18 2000)

The Russian M/V SKRIPLEV, 416 gt, built 1963, sank at 0615, May 15, in Valentine Bay, 3.7 miles off the coast, in lat 43 03N, long 134 20E. All 14 crew members were rescued & proceeding to Slavyanka, Russia. (Wed. May 17 2000)


On 14.05.2000 at 0205 LT in position 03:54.1N 098:46.0E at Belawan anchorage, Indonesia, 5 pirates armed with long knives boarded a general cargo vessel from starboard side. They tied up duty sailor & threatened to kill him. They broke into forecastle store & stole a large amount of ship's stores. Pirates jumped overboard & escaped at 0225 LT after realizing that the other crew had been alerted. At 0320 LT the same pirates re-boarded the vessel. However, seeing the alert crew they aborted the attack & escaped in a small unlit wooden boat. (Tues. May 16 2000)

On 10.05.2000 at 1230 LT at Chennai anchorage, India, 1 pirate boarded a bulk carrier from stern. He was noticed by the duty officer but he jumped overboard and fled in a waiting craft with 6 other people in it. Ship's stores were stolen. (Tues. May 16 2000)

On 10.05.2000 at 2350 LT at Chittagong anchorage, Bangladesh, 4 armed pirates boarded a general cargo vessel. They stole ship's stores & escaped by jumping into the water. (Tues. May 16 2000)

Five stranded travelers, including famed pilot Dick Rutan, were rescued from the North Pole about 12 hours after their Russian-designed biplane landed and then sank through the ice, the Coast Guard said on May 16. The group boarded a commercial plane late May 15 for Eureka, Nunavut, Canada, a small settlement in the Queen Elizabeth Islands west of Greenland. Another plane hired by their families was going to transport them back to Alaska. The travelers had been stranded about a mile from the North Pole on the North American side. Among the group was Rutan of Mojave, Calif., who became famous in 1986 as one of the 2 person crew who made the 1st flight around the world without stopping or refueling. The 5 aboard the An-2 biplane were traveling with a single-engine (Mon. May 15 2000)

The Bahamas M/V MULTIFLEX SPRINT (2,854 gross), Valletta for Aviles in ballast, sustained engine-room damage & arrived Corunna, in tow of tug Remolcagure Bat, May 10. Repairs under way May 12. (Sat. May 13 2000)

Three dead stowaways & 4 survivors were found inside a steel cargo container at Miamia aboard M/V Seaboard Caribe, exposed to the hot sun from the Dominican Republic. Temperatures inside the containers, which can't be opened from the interior, can reach 125 to 130 degrees. "It appears that they baked inside one of the containers,"said a spokeswoman for the U.S. INS. The Capt. of Seaboard Caribe had notified authorities of the stowaways. The ship, operated by Seaboard Marine, left Puerto Plata on Monday. The 4 survivors will likely be repatriated. One was taken to a hospital after complaining of dizziness & vomiting. Smugglers often use shipping containers to bring illegal immigrants into the U.S. In January, authorities in Seattle found 3 Chinese men dead in a cargo container along with 15 other men trying to reach the U.S. The men, who had become seasick, died of acute malnutrition & dehydration. (Thus. May 11 2000)

The Danish ro-ro M/V DANA MAXIMA (17,068 gross), Esbjerg for Immingham, was in collision with the Danish trawler F/V SOLVEIG HOLM (495 gross) at the entrance to Esbjerg May 6. Dana Maxima sustained hole above waterline. Solveig Holm sustained bulwark damage. (Wed. May 10 2000)

The Syrian M/V DALIA S. (804 gross), Tartous for Alexandria with concentrated nitric acid, had an acid tank fall over, contents eroded hull bottom & vessel sank about 6 km off Alexandria May 6. All crew rescued. Over 160 tons acid spilled into sea. Clean up under way May 8. Prosecutors are questioning officials in nearby ports. (Tues. May 9 2000)

The Hong Kong bulk carrier M/V APTMARINER (17,677 gross), Ventspils for Montreal, struck an obstruction in fog near the entrance to the Neebish Rock Cut, St. Mary's River, May 5. Refloated same day. Sustained water ingress. Still anchored nearby May 6. (Mon. May 8 2000)

The German refrigerated M/V ACONCAGUA (9,074 gross), Puerto Bolivar (Ecuador) for Gdansk with bananas, grounded on sand in lat 55 52.4N, long 10 51.5E, May 5. No pollution. Vessel attempting to refloat by own means. (Sat. May 6 2000)

The Cambodian M/V Conan carrying steel sank after colliding with a Panamanian M/V Robin Forest, in balast, in the lower reaches of the Yangtze river. No injuries or casualties reported. The Conan bound for the eastern Chinese city of Nanjing from Mokpo of South Korea, with 10,000 tons of rolled steel, collided with the Robin Forest, at 1035 GMT on Wednesday in the waters of Nantong, between Nanjing & Shanghai. The captain of the Conan ordered his crew to abandon ship that night & by early Thurs. morning the deck was almost fully submerged. China has sent its largest water rescue crane to salvage the ship. (Fri. May 5 2000)

The United Kingdom m passenger vessel M/V AURORA (76,152 gross), Southampton for the Mediterranean with passengers, had propeller shaft problems May 2 & returned to Southampton May 3. To be dry-docked for inspection and repairs. (Thurs. May 4 2000)

Two ferries caught in a storm sank in the Meghna River in eastern Bangladesh, killing 46 people &leaving 150 missing. Police divers recovered 30 bodies from the M/V Dolphin after it capsized May 3 with over 150 people aboard some 50 miles east of Dhaka, the Bangladesh capital. An additional 125 people on board were missing and feared drowned. In neighboring Narsingdi district, at least 20 passengers swam ashore as their ferry, M/V Bengal Bird, began sinking with 61 people on May 2. Rescuers found 16 bodies from a nearby shoal. They resumed the search Wednesday for 25 missing passengers. Efforts also were being made to salvage the 2 sunken vessels. (Wed. May 3 2000)

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Special Articles From The Cargo letter for May 2000

***Priracy Summit Concludes .......... as authorities from 15 countries - including Japan, China, Indonesia, Malaysia, India and South Korea - wrapped up a 2 day conference in Tokyo on piracy on May 12 by adopting an action plan calling for increased cooperation between countries. "Taking into account that recent piracy & armed robbery against ships seems to be connected to Int'l syndicates, seems therefore to be more brutal, and seems to be operated beyond one country's administration (we) shared the view that it is necessary to promote mutual cooperation," a communique issued at the end of the conference said. The countries agreed to beef up information exchange and work towards formulating concrete measures to be taken in the event a ship is attacked, including possible joint patrols of hazardous areas. China however has ruled out its participation joint patrols or exercises and has made it clear it will retain sole responsibility for what it regards as Chinese waters. Of the estimated 285 attacks throughout the world that year, 158 took place in South-east.

***Taking A Stand In The Strait ....... as a part of the fight against piracy in the Strait of Malacca, all vessels sailing along the 900 kilometer route will be asked to report their positions to a new Indonesian Naval Center. The Indonesian Government is to make a stand against the growing number of marine crimes. One third of all maritime crimes worldwide were committed in Indonesia in the 1st quarter of the year & consisted of 19 pirate attacks. This is an increase on the same period for the previous 2 years, when there were 18 attacks in 1999 & 10 in 1998. These attacks all took place in the Strait of Malacca. Accordingly, the government will set up a center on Batam Island to monitor the movements of the ships in the Straits & provide help when needed. Success will depend on the co-operation of the vessels passing through which will be required to give their positions. The Indonesian navy plans to deploy 15 patrol boats to provide an effective security system. However, there are some difficulties for the new plan. Foremost of these is the geography of the area. The low-lying coastline of Sumatra, where ships have to slow down on their entry to Singapore, consists of thousands of inlets, covered in thick foliage. Pirates using speedboats can lie in wait undetected and then rush out to attack the passing vessels. Only effective air reconnaissance can find these natural hiding places. The other problem for the Indonesian navy is the state of its fleet & aircraft. Many of the patrolships & planes are obsolescent, some even dating back to the 1940's, and they struggle to match the performance of the vessels the pirates use.

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Vessel Loss Dispatches For April 2000

The 8 man crew of the 1,219 dwt general cargo ship M/V Gran Rio R are missing, presumed drowned after their 1957-built ship disappeared off Tobago in the Caribbean. Search & rescue missions found no sign of the St Vincent-flag vessel, which is thought to have sunk with all hands. (Sun. April 30 2000)

The M/V American Mariner, wth iron ore pellets, struck a light just north of Port Huron early April 28, tearing a hole in the hull. The freighter blocked 30 ships while stuck in Lake Huron's shipping channel for almost a day. The ship lay across the Huron Cut shipping channel, halting other vessels trying to sail south into the St. Clair River or north into Lake Huron. None of the 26 crew were in danger & remained aboard as the 730-foot-long vessel took on water.The ship used its own pumps & portable pumps from the Coast Guard to remove the water, and about 1:45 a.m. Saturday, the waiting vessels were allowed to begin navigation through the channel. (Sat. April 29 2000)

The Bahamas livestock carrier M/V BADER III (36,387 gross), Egypt for Portland, Australia, had fire in auxiliary generator in lat 28 40S, long 104 09E, Apr 22. Taken in tow by tug Wambiri bound Fremantle, where ETA Apr 30. (Sat. April 29 2000)

The Venezuelan M/V CARMEN FABRIANA (489 gross), cargo of cement, had engine-room fire, which later spread, in lat 11 55N, long 66 30W, Apr 26. Crew evacuated safely. Still burning/drifting in lat 11 09.6N, long 66 59.8W, Apr 27. Tug proceeding. (Fri. April 28 2000)

The ferry M/V Aquitaine crashed into a pontoon while docking at this northern French port city, slightly injuring 38 passengers. The ferry, which had departed Britain from Dover, was carrying 1,241 passengers & 123 crew at the time of the accident, according to a statement released by P&O, which owns the ferry. 38 people had minor injuries, with one person suffering a broken arm. The accident occurred after an engine stalled, preventing the ferry from backing up. The vessel & the pontoon suffered minor damage. (Thus. April 27 2000)

The USCGC Healy built for traveling through ice-packed polar waters has started a rare trip through Canada's disputed Northwest Passage. The voyage by the U.S. Coast Guard ship is the 4th by an American-flagged vessel through the passage since Canada & the U.S. signed an Arctic cooperation agreement in 1988. Under the agreement, both countries pledged to work together to help with the navigation of icebreakers & share research. But the question of who controls the icy link between the Arctic & Atlantic Oceans has remained unresolved. The U.S. has never recognized Canada's 1973 claim of the Northwest Passage as an internal Canadian waterway. Before the cooperation agreement, 2 U.S. ships sent without permission -- the oil tanker M/T Manhattan in 1969 & the icebreaker USCGC Polar Sea in 1985 -- caused disputes between the neighboring countries. (Thurs. April 27 2000)

The St.Vincent & Grenadines bulk carrier M/V SEA QUEEN (7,248 gross), broke in two in way of No.2 hold while loading cement at Mina Saqr Apr 22. (Thurs. April 27 2000)

The Panamanian chemical tanker M/V NIPAYIA (4,750 gross), Tallinn for Europoort, grounded near Buoy 43, near Walsoorden, River Scheldt, while inbound, Apr 25. Tugs on scene & will attempt to refloat on tonight's high tide. (Wed. April 26 2000)

The St.Vincent & Grenadines bulk carrier M/V MINERVA H. , ex M/V Minerva, Norwegian flag, (1,480 gross), Kolding for Skagen with wood, some of which on deck, grounded in lat 56 21N, long 10 57 E, Apr 23. Engine-room flooded. Refloated Apr 24 and towed closer to shore where beached in lat 56 23N, long 10 56E, to prevent sinking. Crew taken off. Surveyors on scene. (Tues. April 25 2000)

PIRATE ALERT >>> Reuters is reporting that heavily armed pirates have kidnapped 20 people, including 10 foreign tourists, on a tropical resort island off Borneo in eastern Malaysia & headed out to sea. Malaysian officials said they knew where the hostages, including 6 foreign women, were being held & believed they were safe. The Philippines said a Moslem rebel group in the southern Philippines might be responsible. The 6 gunmen arrived in two boats on the evening of April 23 on tiny Sipadan island, a world-renowned diving spot about 20 miles off the scenic coast of Malaysia's Sabah state, & took 22 hostages. Two Americans who were captured, both aged 51, escaped into the woods before the captors ordered the hostages into two boats. The captors left one of their boats on the island & stole one belonging to the resort. There were no reports of demands by the pirates. The hostages are 9 Malaysians, 3 Germans, 2 French, 2 South Africans, 2 Finnish, 1 Lebanese & 1 Filipino working at the Sipadan Island Resort. The 10 foreign tourists include 6 women & 4 men. Philippine Defence Secretary Orlando Mercado said the captors appeared to be Filipino & had sped towards Philippine waters with the hostages. Philippine authorities ordered the navy & air force on alert. Malaysia's Defence Ministry dispatched a patrol boat & a maritime surveillance aircraft. The captors are believed to be carrying AK-47 rifles & the 6th had a bazooka gun when they arrived at the Sipadan Island Resort during dinner on Sunday. They stormed the police station on the island & the local wildlife & forestry office before heading for the resort. (Mon. April 24 2000)

U.S. bulk carrier M/V CALCITE II (8,188 gt, built 1929), loaded with limestone, grounded while departing Port Inland for Cleveland, Ohio, on Apr 19. Vessel was unable to refloat under her own power & she was finally refloated with tug assistance on Apr 20. Tank soundings revealed that she was not taking water. Vessel will proceed Cleveland for internal structural examination. (Mon. April 24 2000)

The Japan 279-ton F/V Daitoku Maru No.7 was apparently fired upon & seized off Japan's northern island of Hokkaido. A Russian border patrol vessel fired on the fishing vessel on Friday & appears to have seized the ship with 20 crew aboard, the Japanese coast guard said. This is the 1st incident of its kind in 3 years & could cast a shadow over next week's initial meeting between Japanese Prime Minister Yoshiro Mori & Russian President Vladimir Putin. Japan Coast Guard has dispatched 4 vessels to the scene to investigate, but has been unable to contact the ship. The incident appeared to have taken place in Int'l waters, rather than in disputed waters around 4 small islands north of Hokkaido. (Fri. April 21 2000)

The Egyptian M/V NEPTUNE PIONEER (1,753 gross) had water ingress into engine-room while adjusting ballast valve during cargo loading operations at Suez Apr 20. Suez Canal tugs alongside to pump water out. (Fri. April 21 2000)

The Panamanian chemical tanker M/T CHEM RUNNER (3,106 gross), Belawan for Tema with palm oil, had main engine problems off Mauritius Apr 6. Towed to Port Louis Apr 10. Repairing Apr 19. Repairs ETC Apr 21. (Thurs. April 20 2000)

The Austrian M/V LECH (4,372 gross) reported drifting with engine trouble in lat 46 24.5N, long 03 43.3W, Apr 17. Tug Suhaili proceeding. ETA on scene Apr 18. (Wed. April 19 2000)

AGAIN IN SAME WEEK For Sister Ship ! >>> The Philippine inter-island ferry M/V VIVA PENAFRANCIA slammed into a fish corral at sea early on April 17, disabling its propeller. The vessel was Mindoro Island for Batangas with 117 passengers & 20 crew, struck a fish coral, listed & sank, 6 nautical miles off Batangas Apr 17. All passengers & crew rescued safely. It was the 2nd sea mishap to occur in the Philippines in 5 days, after at least 138 people drowned & 70 rescued last week when an overloaded ferry capsized off Jolo island in the So. Philippines. In the latest incident, a sister ship tried to tow the 260-ton Viva Penafrancia to port in nearby Batangas city after its passengers & crew were transferred to a passing vessel but the distressed ferry listed & sank with its cargo of motor vehicles. The Viva Penafrancia struck a fish corral -- a bamboo-made shelter for fish -- in the open sea. The 2 incidents in less than a week further blight the sorry maritime safety record of this archipelagic country of more than 7,000 islands. In 1987, about 4,000 people died in a collision between the ferry M/V Dona Paz & an oil tanker -- the world's worst peacetime sea tragedy. (Mon. April 17 2000)

The St.Vincent & Grenadines M/V SUN BIRD (1,886 gross), for Aruba with gypsum, sank in lat 13 04.5N, long 69 51W, Apr 16. All crew rescued safely. (Mon. April 17 2000)

The South Korean chemical tanker M/T BU IL (997 gross), Ulsan for Shanghai with chemicals, was in collision with tanker M/T Sunyang Chemi 1 off Cheju Island, in about lat 32 37.4N, long 125 39.6E, Apr 14. Capsized & sank. All crew rescued safely. (Sat. April 15 2000)

The Bahamas M/V MILLENIUM YAMA (14,038 gross), Torre Annunziata for Montreal, had main engine breakdown followed by an engine-room fire off Godbout, Baie Comeau, in lat 49 05.48N, long 67 38.30W, Apr 11. Fire quickly extinguished by crew. Towed into Baie Comeau. (Fri. April 14 2000)

The overloaded wooden Philippine ferry M/V Arlahada headed for Malaysia has capsized & sank, killing at least 56 people. More than 100 others are missing & feared dead. 19 people have been rescued as of April 12 morning. Many passengers were crowded on one side of the Arlahada, causing it to tip & then capsize shortly after leaving Jolo, the provincial capital. The vessel was only authorized to carry cargo, not passengers, said the Coast Guard. It had 9 crew & 11 cargo agents on board when it departed Jolo.(Thurs. April 13 2000) The death toll is now 138. (Sun. April 16 2000)

The Maltese chemical tanker M/T OLAR (4,743 gross) contacted the quay while departing Antwerp Apr 12. Sustained damage to bulbous bow. Returned to Berth 413, Antwerp, after survey. (Thurs. April 13 2000)

The United Kingdom tanker M/T WHITIDE (1,148 gross), Cork for Milford Haven in ballast, reported disabled w/ broken crankshaft off St. Annes Head, in lat 51 40N, long 06 11W, Apr 11. Tug Connor proceeding from Swansea. (Wed. April 12 2000)

The Russia's Pacific Fleet destroyer Burnyi accidentally fired a shell in Vladivostok Harbor on April 10, hitting an anti-submarine ship. Nobody was injured in the incident -- which happened in the Golden Horn Harbor in the center of Vladivostok -- but the superstructure of the anti-submarine vessel Admiral Vinogradov, was damaged. Oh, do you think! The accident happened when routine weapons testing on the destroyer went wrong, a spokesman said. "Today, between 2200 & 2300 GMT on Sunday on the destroyer Burnyi during a planned check of weapons & machinery there was an unsanctioned shot of a dummy shell because of a violation of security procedures." Accidents have become more frequent in Russia's once mighty Pacific Fleet, which as well as most other units of the Russian armed forces, is owed millions of dollars by the state. Both ships involved in the incident were preparing for an official visit to South Korea on April 19. Seoul, take cover! (Tues. April 11 2000)

The Honduran m cement carrier M/V RAYSUT CEMENT I (947 gross) developed a list while loading bulk cement at Pier No.3, Salalah, & subsequently sank Apr 9. Master & all crew reported safe. (Tues. April 11 2000)

Turkish coastguard officials are trying to free 9,068-gross ton Antiguan container ship M/V Jessilena from the shores of the city of Istanbul where it ran aground on April 9. The bow is stuck nearly atop a moored boat restaurant in the suburb of Bebek on the shores of the Bosphorus strait running through the city. Jessilena took on cargo at Istanbul's Haydarpasa port & was bound for the Romanian city of Constanta when its rudder froze, causing the ship to veer shoreward. Turkey's Bosphorus & Dardanelles straits, linked by the Marmara sea, are among the world's busiest shipping lanes and the site of frequent collisions. Turkey opposes the increased traffic, citing danger to Istanbul's more than 10 million inhabitants, but is bound by the 1936 Montreaux Convention to provide free passage to all merchant vessels in peacetime. A Russian-flagged tanker ran aground and split in two in the Marmara sea off Istanbul in Feb. (Mon. April 10 2000)

The Swedish tanker M/T UNITED ANTON (11,375 gt), bound Rostock with gasoline, grounded off Langeland in the Great Belt on Apr 9. No damage or pollution has been reported. (Mon. April 10 2000)

The Singapore container ship M/V Xpress Makalu slammed against a jetty at Bangladesh's main Chittagong port today. The 125-meter ship sustained damage to its bows when an ebb tide dragged it against a dilapidated jetty. Temporary repairs underway. There were 141 containers aboard. (Sat. April 8 2000)

Sri Lankan rebels destroyed 2 fast-attack navy gunboats in a pitched sea battle against government troops off a strategic causeway that both sides are battling to control, in the waters off Vadamarachchi, 180 miles north of Colombo. The navy vessels caught fire & sank after being hit by rebel artillery fire & the guerrilla naval unit monitored in the northern military-controlled town of Vavuniya. The battle took place near the Elephant Pass causeway, which links the mainland with Jaffna Peninsula. The guerrillas launched a major offensive 2 weeks ago to control a vital bridge in their effort to recapture Jaffna town, their former capital, which was lost to the military in 1996. (Fri. April 7 2000)

Two Royal Engineers were killed and a 3rd injured in an accident during a routine inspection of coal ship M/V Diamond Bulker in Northern Ireland. There was no indication of terrorist involvement or an altercation between the English engineers & the crew of the Philippine-registered vessel, which was carrying a cargo of coal from Colombia. "They were on board the vessel that was being subjected to the search & they met their end in the hold area," an army spokesman said. The 2 engineers, who were working with the Royal Navy, may have been overcome by fumes, hit by shifting cargo or fallen off a ladder during a check of the ship anchored in Lough Foyle in Londonderry late on Wednesday. But he stressed it was too early to tell exactly what happened and that an investigation was underway. One of the dead men was from Plymouth and the other from Bristol. Their ages were given as 31 and 23 but their names were being withheld until relatives were notified. The injured man was in stable condition in hospital.

M/V FENSFJORD (1,000 gt, built 1980) was drifting in lat 52 45.12N. long 03 51.9E, Apr 4, owing to main engine failure at 2130, UTC. M/V Cincobulk made 3 attempts to get a line on board the casualty, but to no avail. At 0100, UTC, Apr 5 Fensfjord reported making water. Helicopter proceeding to pick up crew. (Thurs. April 6 2000)

M/V VICTOR (2,740 gt, built 1968) reported leakage of water into her engine-room in lat 48N, long 06W, at 1900, local time, Apr 3. She was taken in tow by the tug Abeille Flandre & was expected to arrive in Brest at midnight Apr 4. (Wed. April 5 2000)

The Finnish roll-on roll-off ferry M/V FINNFELLOW (14,297 gt), bound Naantali with 58 passengers, grounded on Overo Island, in lat 60 06.82N, long 20 30.4E, on April 2. Salvage operations under way.(Tues. April 4 2000)

Ro-ro M/V DART 2 (9.080 gt, built 1985) was in collision with dredger/sand carrier CITY OF WESTMINSTER (3,914 gt, built 1990) in lat 30.28N, long 00 31.59E on April 2 after City of Westminster had steering problems. Both vessels damaged. City of Westminster proceeding to Chatham docks with hole above waterline. Dart 2 bethed at Dartford.(Mon. April 3 2000)

A lone French oarsman abandoned his attempt today to row across the Pacific Ocean after doctors sent to give him medical supplies found traces of gangrene in both his feet. Jo Le Guen, who set off Feb. 3 from New Zealand's capital, Wellington, on his 5,580 mile voyage, aiming for Cape Horn, Chile, was taken on board an unidentified container ship with just 1/3 of his trip completed. Le Guen, 52, was found by doctors to be suffering septicemia, or blood poisoning, & had the beginnings of gangrene in his feet. He was delirious & too tired to speak. His boat, designated S/V Keep It Blue, boasted electrictronics powered by batteries charged via solar panels & 2 generating windmills, as well as high-tech navigation & communications equipment. Le Guen carried 3 sets of 9-foot oars, dried food for the duration of the journey, fresh water & 2 water purifiers capable of extracting salt from sea water. Le Guen had estimated it would take 3.5 months of rowing to reach his destination. No stranger to open ocean crossings, the father of 5 has twice rowed the Atlantic. On one trip he went solo & on the other he was in a 2 man team. Our industry is sorry that your proven ability failed to reach the goal this time. (Mon. April 3 2000)

Toxic gases are thought to have been the cause of the deaths of 3 crewmembers on board the Italian-flag products tanker M/T Alderamine in the Atlantic. It is thought that the gas leak occurred during routine maintenance work as the 30,572 dwt ship headed for Spain in ballast from the U.S. The exact cause of the accident is not yet known. (April 1 2000)

The 551 gross ton Turkish-registered M/V Huseyin Avci & the 27,031 gross ton Lebanese-flagged dry cargo M/V Poylak collided on April 1 in the Black Sea near Turkey's busy Bosphorus Strait. There were no casualties & both ships remained afloat despite sustaining damage, the official traffic control center at the Bosphorus strait said. The strait remained open to traffic. The Poylak was traveling ballast from Greece's Piraeus port to the Ukrainian port of Berdyansk on the Black Sea. The Huseyin Avci, was carrying minerals, but destination not stated. The two ships were held for investigation. Turkey's Bosphorus & Dardanelles straits linking the Mediterranean and Black seas are among the world's busiest & most dangerous shipping lanes. (Sat. April 1 2000)

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Special Articles From The Cargo letter for April 2000

***1st Quarter Pirate Stats Told ........... as Indonesia scored the highest number of pirate attacks in the 1st quarter of the year with 19 raids or attempted raids on shipping in its waters, the Int'l Maritime Bureau said in a report. For all of last year, a total 113 piracy cases were reported in Indonesian waters, 18 of them in the 1st quarter. There were 56 pirate attacks or attempted attacks worldwide in the 1st quarter of 2000, down from 66 in the same period last year, the report said. Seven of the 56 attacks were in the Malacca Strait, between peninsular Malaysia & the Indonesian island of Sumatra. Five were reported in Indian waters while Bangladesh & Nigeria had 4 cases each.

Locations of Actual & Attempted Attacks

In The1st Quarter, January To March of The Years Below.

1997 1998 1999 2000

Southeast Asia

Cambodia 1 - - -

Indonesia 8 10 18 19

Malacca Straits - - - 7

Malaysia 1 2 2 1

Philippines 10 9 - -

Singapore Straits - - 10 -

Thailand 1 - 3 1


Brazil 2 3 4 2

Dominican Republic 1 - - -

Ecuador 2 4 1 -

Jamaica - - 1 -

Peru 1 - 2 -

United States - 1 - 1

Venezuela - - 2 -


Angola 1 - 1 1

Cameroon - - 1 -

Congo - - - 1

Egypt - - - 1

Gabon - 1 - -

Ghana 1 - - -

Guinea 1 1 1 -

Ivory Coast 2 - 3 -

Kenya - 3 - 1

Morocco - - 1 -

Nigeria 3 1 4 4

Senegal - - 1 -

Somalia/Djibouti 3 3 2 2

Tanzania 1 1 2 1

Yemen 1 - - -

Far East

China, Hong Kong,

Macau - 1 2 1

East China Sea - - - 1

Hong Kong, Luzon,

Hainan 1 - - -

Papua New Guinea - 1 - -

South China Sea - - 2 1

Vietnam 1 - 1 1

Indian Subcontinent

Bangladesh 1 3 1 4

India 4 3 - 5

Sri Lanka 2 - - 1

Rest of the World

Georgia 1 - - -

Italy - - 1 -

Turkey 2 - - -


TOTAL 52 47 66 56

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Vessel Loss Dispatches For March 2000

The French ro-ro/passenger vessel M/V SEAFRANCE MONET (12,962 gross), Dover for Calais with cars & passengers, was blown against a berth at Calais Mar 29. Holed below waterline. Temporary repairs effected. Permanent repairs, which will take several weeks, will be effected at Calais. (Fri. March 31 2000)

The Pakistan container vessel M/V LALAZAR (10,246 gross) had fire on board due to an electrical short circuit while at Berth No.11, Karachi, Mar 28. Bridge & Masters cabin damaged. Fire extinguished within 1 hour. Damage assessment under way Mar 29. (Thurs. March 30 2000)

Crews from the U.S. Coast Guard and other agencies on March 219 freed a Russian freighter that ran aground in a hurricane 4 months ago near a historic fortress. The crew refloated the 564-foot M/V Sergo Zakariadze by offloading more than half of its cargo of 17,000 tons of cement and 200,000 gallons of fuel. The ship became stuck on rocks near Ft. San Felipe del Morro, a 17th century fortress at the mouth of San Juan Bay, last November after its steering system suffered mechanical failure. The ship was being towed to the western town of Mayaguez to unload salvage equipment on board, then will continue its journey to Mexico. (Thurs. March 30 2000)

The Liberian-registered M/V Martina collided today with German-owned 1,297-ton container ship M/V Werder Bremen off southwest Sweden and 5 Polish nationals are missing after one of the vessels sank. Those missing are 4 crew of Werder Bremen & a 5th person aboard the Martina, which was taking a cargo of hydrochloric acid from Sarpsborg in Norway to Copenhagen. Two crew members of the 387-ton Martina were rescued & are in hospital. The Martina, owned by Euro Shipping Ltd, sank after the collision which occurred in poor visibility off the Hoganas peninsula in southwest Sweden near Denmark around 0800 GMT. Thirteen crew were rescued unharmed from the Werder Bremen, the Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre in Gothenburg said. About 20 vessels & 5 helicopters from Denmark & Sweden are searching for survivors, and ambulances are waiting at Hoganas. Divers will examine the sunken vessel in case the missing people have survived in air pockets. (Tues. March 28 2000)

The New Zealand research vessel M/V MONOWAI (2,753 gross) had fire in engine-room while berthed at Lowestoft, awaiting refit, Mar 26. Fire extinguished same day. (Tues. March 28 2000)

The Romanian M/V OCEAN LINE 2 (5,983 gross), while anchored at Jetty 13, Chittagong, was struck by the Turkish bulk carrier M/V LIMA 1 (16,023 gross) on Mar 24. Both vessels sustained damages. Investigation & damage assessment under way. (Mon. March 27 2000)

A US$80,000 reward has now been put up for information leading to the whereabouts of the missing Taiwanese ship M/V Hualien No 1. A special alert has also been issued by the IMB regarding the vessel & its 21-man crew. The ship was carrying a cargo of river gravel when it disappeared near the Taiwan Strait. For full details, see our Mon. March 6 2000 posting, below. (Mon. March 27 2000)

>>> Rescue Mission Update!: After hours of fruitless searching, Canadian ships called off the hunt for more survivors of M/V Leader L which sank in the high seas off Bermuda. Twelve sailors still missing in the Atlantic were presumed dead. Earlier Friday, 13 sailors from the 31-member crew of the ship Leader L were rescued in a dramatic operation, with Canadian & U.S. aircraft dropping life rafts to survivors bobbing in the sea. Six bodies were recovered from the ship, which sank hours after placing a distress call March 23, 400 miles northeast of Bermuda. By evening March 24, several hours had passed without finding more bodies or survivors, and Canadian aircraft & navy ships called off the search. The Canadian navy destroyer Iroquois was taking the survivors & the dead to Bermuda and was expected to arrive this afternoon. Radio transmissions from the Leader L continued until just seconds before it went under Thursday night, suggesting some crew may never have escaped the vessel. The ship sank after the Leader L placed a distress call saying that a 45-foot steel hull plate had come loose & water was flooding into the hold. (Sat. March 25 2000)

The United Kingdom passenger/ro-ro vessel M/V NORTHERN MERCHANT (24,046 gross), Dunkirk for Dover loaded, landed heavily while berthing at Dover Mar 22. No injuries. Returned to Dunkirk for discharge. Sustained superficial damage only. Survey under way. (Fri. March 24 2000)

>>> Rescue Mission!: The Greek cargo ship M/V Leader L with 31 crew members aboard sank in 5,000 deep waters of the Atlantic Ocean more than 400 miles off of Bermuda today, forcing the sailors to take to lifeboats & wait on rough seas for rescuers still hours away. The 776-foot Leader L sent out a distress call at 1:32 p.m. EST that it was taking on water due to oss of a 45-foot steel hull plate on the starboard side. The crew began abandoning ship. The ship sank within hours, but the Coast Guard has not been able to determine whether all 31 crew members made it into their lifeboats. The ship had 2 life boats that could carry 20 people each and also had 4 life rafts. Canadian & U.S. Coast Guard C-130 aircraft that arrived on the scene spotted one lifeboat after dark but did not know how many people, if any, were on board. They also detected several strobe lights - either from lifeboats or life jackets - in the water. The C-130 aircraft could only monitor the scene & not rescue the sailors. Waves in the area reached 16 feet. Canadian military helicopters plucked survivors from life-rafts & open water, hoisting up at least 13 crew members as they hovered over heavily rolling seas. (Fri. March 24 2000)

The United Kingdom passenger/ro-ro vessel M/V NORTHERN MERCHANT (24,046 gross), Dunkirk for Dover loaded, landed heavily while berthing at Dover Mar 22. No injuries. Returned to Dunkirk for discharge. Sustained superficial damage only. Survey under way. (Fri. March 24 2000)

The St. Vincent & Grenadines bulk carrier M/V Bovec, 20,433 gt (built 1976) dragged anchor in high winds & grounded in Tuck Inlet, northern Prince Rupert Harbour, Mar 21. Vessel still aground Mar 22. Salvage operations under way. (Thurs. March 23 2000)

The St.Vincent & Grenadines M/V ANA MERCEDES (1,002 gross), Puerto Cortes for Corpus Christi with cement, reported taking water in lat 14 15N, long 68 46W, Mar 19. Tug Smit Curacao evacuated 6 crew & escorted vessel to Curacao, where arrived Mar 20. (Wed. March 22 2000)

The Bahamas ro-ro M/V DART 2 (9,080 gross) grounded near the green light of Flushing outer harbor Mar 20. Tugs proceeded. Refloated same day. (Tues. March 21 2000)

>>> Shipping Alert!: All the "Oscars" for the 2000 Academy Awards ceremony have been found! Our Los Angeles Police Department proudly announces that all the statues were found tonight, March 19, behind a "Food 4 Less" store in Korea Town by a Mr. Willie Fulgear who will now receive a US$50,000 reward from Roadway. See our March 17 story, below. Rest easy, Roadway Express! (Mon. March 20 2000)

The Nova Scotia fishing vessel F/V Fame, rescued 26 fishermen from the large fishing vessel F/V BCM Atlantic that sank off the coast of Labrador early on March 19. The crew of the Nova Scotia-registered BCM Atlantic took to the water in 2 life rafts & 1 lifeboat after the ship began taking on water through a hole, caused by unreported means. F/V Fame reached the scene about an hour later & picked up the crew. The incident took place about 149 miles east of Labrador. (Mon. March 20 2000)

U.S. bulk carrier M/V JUDY LITRICO, (15,544 tons gross, built 1973) reported with fire in engine room Mar 19 in lat 33 44N, long 34 22W. Crew attempting to extinguish fire. Salavage fire-fighting tug proceeding to casualty. (Mon. March 20 2000)

The Portuguese F/V JOAO NUNO was in collision with the Swiss chemical tanker M/T CERVIN (4,076 gross) near Cape Saint Vincent, Portugal Mar 15. Joao Nuno sank. All her crew safely rescued by Cervin. (Sat. March 18 2000)

Albanian coastguards have seized a Russian cargo ship for violating the country's territorial waters. The merchant vessel M/V Melma Madelda with a crew of 15 was intercepted by coastguards off Velipoje beach in northern Albania on March 16 after sailing from Montenegro. The area is often used by tankers smuggling fuel into Albania. Albanian & Italian coastguards, who together patrol Albanian waters, had escorted the ship to the port of Shengjin, where the captain was being questioned. (Fri. March 17 2000)

The Liberian tanker M/T J.DENNIS BONNEY (88,946 gross) was in collison with the Singapore tanker M/T EAGLE CARINA (52,504 gross) near the LOOP Terminal on Mar 15. J.Dennis Bonney sustained a crack & spilt about 200 barrels of crude. Both vessels are still anchored in the area under investigation. (Fri. March 17 2000)

>>> Shipping Alert!: As it is reported this Thurs. March 16 night that all of the "Oscar" statue awards for the 2000 Academy Awards ceremony have been stolen from the Los Angeles (City of Bell) inbound loading dock of Roadway Express, a national LTL carrier. For internal reasons, we are proud to be the1st in the world to bring you this news. For the show next week ........ and the winner is (was) ............

Another one nabbed, as the Belize tanker M/T SEA LEADER B. (4,644 gross) was detained by the U.S. Navy in UAE waters Mar 14 for allegedly breaking the UN Embargo by smuggling Iraqi cargo. Handed over to the Abu Dhabi Coast Guard. In other news today, America's flag came down & the Polish flag was hoisted aboard USS Clark yesterday as the ship embarked on a 2nd career in the Polish navy. The 20 year old 445 ft. missle frigate Clark became only the 2nd U.S. ship given to Poland. The country received a U.S. submarine during World War II (Thurs. March 16 2000)

The Japanese stern-trawler M/V CHIYO MARU No.5 (3,086 gross) had engine room fire & immobilized in lat 50 53S, long 58 23W, Mar 12. Tug Typhoon proceeding & will tow her to Stanley for repairs. (Wed. March 15 2000)

The South Korean M/V CHUNG DO (1,050 gross), Kawasaki for Inchon with scrap, grounded in the Naruto Channel Mar 9. Sustained leakage to forepeak tank. Refloated. Subsequently arrived Komatsushima Mar 10. (Tues. March 14 2000)

Dutch passenger vessel M/V NORSTAR (26,919 gt, built 1974), with 822 people on board, had fire in engine-room in lat 52 55N, long 01 37E, at 0019, UTC, Mar 11. Vessel shut-down one engine and proceeded for Zeebrugge with assistance of ferry M/V Norsky & lifeboats standing by. No injuries reported. Vessel arrived safely at Zeebrugge same day. (Mon. March 13 2000)

>>>Seventeen Burmese & South Korean seamen turned up unharmed in Thailand after being held by pirates for more than 2 weeks, officials said on March 11. About 10 pirates armed with rifles raided the freighter M/V Global Mars on Feb. 23 in waters off northern Sumatra, Indonesia, said officials at South Korea's Dongjin Shipping Co., which operated the ship. They released the crewmen - 7 South Koreans & 10 Burmese - on March 7, allowing them to take a small boat. But the crewmen took off in the Panama-registered ship with its 6,000-ton cargo of palm oil. After sailing for 3 days, the crewmen arrived at Thailand's Phuket Island & sought help from local police. They were in good health. The vessel was on its way from Malaysia to India when the pirates attacked. The vessel continues missing & the subject of a US$100,000 reward. See March 6 report, below. (Sat. March 11 2000)

The Cyprus bulk carrier M/V KASTOR TOO (10,932 gross), Aqaba for India, sank in lat 13 93N, long 53 28.5E, Mar 10. All 18 crew rescued safely by the container vessel M/V Mildburg. (Sat. March 11 2000)

The Antigua & Barbuda M/V FALDERNTOR (3,572 gross), for Mobile in ballast, had steering problems & grounded in the Mobile Ship Channel Mar 8. Refloated with tug assistance same day. No apparent damage. Arrived Mobile Mar 9. (Fri. March 10 2000)

The Bahamas tanker M/T CLEMENT (32,689 gross), from Corunna with crude oil, grounded on Falster Island, in lat 54 28.9N, long 12 10.8E, Mar 6. No spillage. Tugs on scene March 7 & salvage operations under way. (Wed. March 8 2000)

She Is Still Proud - - ........ as the very battered & war torn Japanese general cargoship M/V ALONDRA RAINBOW, which was hijacked in the Malacca Straits last year, has just now called at Jurong Port in Singapore to unload her remaining cargo of 4,200 tons of aluminium ingots. The 8,000 GT ship was peppered with artillery shell & bullet holes after an Indian naval gun boat opened fire on it with 76.2 mm guns last Nov., forcing 15 Indonesian pirates to surrender after a 2 day chase that ended 270 miles off the coast of Goa. The ALONDRA RAINBOW had to be towed from India to Singapore as the pirates set fire to the engine room in a desperate attempt to sink the ship & evidence of the hijack when Indian naval personnel stormed the vessel. She is now on her way to Japan where the owners are expected to repair the vessel. The 15 Indonesian alleged pirates found onboard the vessel when she was retaken by the Indian Navy, are awaiting trial in India & are being held by the authorities after bail was denied. Sources close to the case indicated that it will take a long time for the suspects to reach trial. >>> See the story of this pirate recovery at M/V Alandra Rainbow. We should all just take one moment to respect the dead and to honor the crew of this brave ship. (Mon. March 6 2000)

>>>The chemical tanker M/T GLOBAL MARS (3,729 gt) built 1985, has gone missing, hijacked by pirates, in the Malaccan Straits, according to the Int'l Maritime Bureau. The vessel, owned by Tokyo-based Global Maritime Service Co., left Port Klang Feb 22 with palm oil bound for India. The IMB Piracy Center in Kuala Lumpur said that the last known position of the vessel was recorded the next day. The Center is alerting all vessels & ports in the vicinity, and is offering a Reward of up to US$100,000 for information leading to successful recovery of the vessel. For claiming this reward, report to The Cargo Letter.

Particulars of the M/V GLOBAL MARS are as follows: 3,729 grt, 2,072 nrt, 6,594 dwt, 105.20m loa, 15.50m beam, 6.85m dft. Gear: 1 Derrick; Engine: Makita Diesel

At the time of her disappearance, the M/V GLOBAL MARS was painted as follows (although she may have since been repainted, renamed and reflagged): Hull bottom: Red, Hull sides/top: Marine Blue, Accomodation area: White/cream, Funnel: Marine Blue, Pipeline Grey.

NOTE: This IMB Piracy Alert was first reported by The Cargo Letter on March 2. (Mon. March 6 2000)

>>>A Taiwan freighter has gone missing on March 1 along with her 21 crew near the Taiwan Strait. State T.V. said the disappearance of the M/V HUALIEN No.1 (4,010 gt, built 1984) has led to speculation that she was being held by the mainland Chinese. Shipping officials say an all out search by marine & naval authorities failed to show any signs of a shipwreck. HUALIEN No.1, carrying 5,300 tons of gravel, had initially been scheduled to arrive at Tamsui port, Taipei, from the eastern port of Hualien by Feb. 29. The sea was calm & wind light when the vessel set sail for Tamsui port. Of the 21 crew, 7 were Burmese, while the rest were from Taiwan. (Mon. March 6 2000)

The Romanian M/V IUGO (5,934 gross), from Rotterdam with iron ore residue, developed a 30 degree list in lat 52 18N, long 03 18E, Mar 4. All crew taken off. Taken in tow for Rotterdam. List increased to 90 degrees & subsequently sank. (This appears to be the "M/V Lugoj", first reported to you for March 4, below.) (Mon. March 6 2000)

The Taiwanese-flag bulk carrier M/V Hualien No 1 has reportedly disappeared while sailing in the Taiwan Strait between mainland China and the island of Taiwan. The 6,275 dwt ship had a crew of 21, 14 of them from Taiwan & 7 from Myanmar, and was operated by Japanese firm Dowa Line. It failed to complete the short journey from the port of Hualien to Tamsui near the northern end of the island with a cargo of 5,000 tons of gravel. An air & sea search and rescue operation was launched by the Taiwanese military but no trace of the ship was found. No distress call has been received and some are speculating that the ship has either been seized by Chinese authorities or been hijacked & taken to a mainland Chinese port. (Mon. March 6 2000)

The petrolium tanker M/T SEBU carrying about 2.1 million barrels of crude has run aground in the Red Sea off Saudi Arabia without causing any injuries or spilling oil, the official Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported on March 5. Vela Int'l Marine Ltd, the shipping arm of state-owned Saudi Aramco, as says the 293,000-ton tanker ran aground about 2.5 miles from Rabigh port. The chartered vessel, which ran aground on Saturday, had been due to unload its cargo of crude at Aramco's Rabigh refinery. SPA said another tanker had been chartered to take some of the cargo from the grounded vessel in a bid to set it free. The agency added that the operation to refloat the tanker was expected to take place later. The vessel was refloated on March 7. (Sun. March 5 2000)

The petroleum barge Paula Lee is stranded on the Oregon Coast, near where the historic stranding of M/V New Carissa (<<< please visit to see an amazing story & dramatic photos, ending in U.S. Navy gun action) took place. A spill is feared (Sat. March 4 2000)

Air Force personnel rescued 2 crew from the British-flagged petroleum tanker M/T Johann Schulte hundreds of miles off the Atlantic coast after the men were injured in an accident that killed a member of their crew. The 2 crewmen from the 465-foot vessel were flown by helicopter Friday night to a hospital in Hamilton, Bermuda. One tanker crew member had been killed & 4 injured 2 March while trying to secure an anchor in rough seas, said Lt. Col. Mike Korcheck, operations officer for the 41st Rescue Squadron at Moody Air Force Base. Twenty-foot swells & 40-knot winds had been reported in the area hundreds of miles east of Bermuda. Two who were hurt remained on board the tanker & did not require emergency medical care. The Air Force sent 2 helicopters & two C-130 cargo planes to Bermuda on 2 March after the Coast Guard requested their assistance. (Sat. March 4 2000)

The Romanian freighter M/V Lugoj is listing sharply & in danger of capsizing in stormy conditions off the Dutch North Sea coast, the Royal Coast Guard says. A Belgian Air Force helicopter plucked 11 of the 17 crew members off the 6,000-ton vessel, which was listing at 30 degrees about 30 miles west of the shore point of Hoek van Holland. A Dutch chopper 1s standing by on a nearby oil platform to collect the remaining crew members if necessary Two tug boats managed to secure the distressed vessel & are towing to shore in near gale-force winds & eight-foot waves. An attempt to right the vessel has been abandoned because it was close to capsizing. The freighter, carrying metallic cinders, had "problems with the loading", suggesting a cargo shift problem. (Sat. March 4 2000)

Australian high-speed ferry builder Austral Ships suffered a setback to its plans to revitalise its yacht-building subsidiary Oceanfast when a fire ravaged a near-completed A$40 million luxury vessel on Feb 29. (Sat. March 4 2000)

The Bahamas ore/bulk/oil M/V BEAR G. (43,487 gt) New York for Venezuela, in ballast, reported at 2000, local time, Feb 28, about 130 miles east-south-east of Kingston, Ja, with explosion in engine-room. Presently in tow bound Kingston. One person dead & 4 injured. (Fri. Mar. 3 2000)

>>>> A Japanese cargo ship with 17 people on board has gone missing near Thailand and is feared hijackedby pirates, the International Maritime Bureau (IMB) said on March 1. The 6,594 gt ton chemical tanker M/T Global Mars left Malaysia's Port Klang on February 22 for India's Haldia with - 4,000 mts of crude palm oil loaded at Belawan, Indonesia & 2,000 mts of refined bridged deodried palm oil loaded at Port Kelang, Malaysia., the IMB's Piracy Reporting Center in Kuala Lumpur said. Its last reported position on Feb. 23 was west of Thailand in the Andaman Sea, 7 degrees 32 seconds north and 97 degrees 24 seconds east, the IMB said. South Korea's Maritime Affairs Ministry & a South Korean shipping firm said the ship's last contact was on February 22 when it was some 240 miles north of Indonesia. IMB said the fate of the 17 crew of the Panama-registered ship was not known. The crew comprised seven from South Korea & 10 from Mynmar. "By now the vessel may have changed her name, flag and possibly has been repainted," the IMB said. "The Japanese owners have reported late, after seven days. We are still trying to locate the ship,"said Noel Choong, regional manager of the piracy centre. A reward of up to US$100,000 has been offered for information leading to the successful recovery of the vessel, and ships in the region have been told to be on the lookout. The vessel is owned by Japan's Global Marine Service Co Ltd, according to the South Korean government & shipping sources. The ship's captain was a 48-year-old South Korean named Lee Hong-sok. (Tues. Mar 2 2000)

IMB said in an annual report released last month that world piracy worldwide surged 40%to 285 in 1999, with Indonesia accounting for 113 of the attacks. Most of the attacks -- 217 of 285 -- involved pirates boarding ships. (Wed. March 1 2000)

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Special Articles From The Cargo letter for March 2000

***Action Considered On Int'l Coastguard' Patrols ......... as high level representatives from Asian coastguard & maritime security agencies in 14 different countries met in Singapore on 6 March as part of the build up to a series of anti-piracy summits in Tokyo over the next 2 months. Japan is pushing for more cooperation between South East Asian countries in fighting piracy. Nippon Foundation executive director Hiroshi Terashima said: "The greater the cooperation among the nations of South East Asia, the greater the success will be in combating piracy." Japan's Maritime Safety Agency guard & rescue director-general Masaru Kubota echoed this sentiment, adding that there was an alarming trend of "Int'l piracy syndicates that are very well organized & covering a wide geographical area". Japan is pushing for joint patrols by coastguard & naval units from Asian countries under the banner of an IMO-backed Int'l organization as well as measures to tighten up inspection & enforcement ashore, effectively denying pirates a safe port of call, and to make search & rescue operations swifter and more effective. The call for action on ship hijackings & piracy was made by Japanese prime minister Keizo Obuchi following last year's hijacking of the M/V Alondra Rainbow and the Singapore meeting took place against the backdrop of the disappearance of the M/V Global Mars, both Japanese owned & operated ships.
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Vessel Loss Dispatches For February 2000

At least 32 people were killed when a a number of bombs exploded on a bus being carried on Philippines inter-island ferry M/V LADY MEDIATRIX, 201 tons, as the vessel was berthing at Ozamis. The blasts subsequently sparked a fire on the vessel. Poluice said the bombs were planted in the luggage of the bus passengers. (Mon. Feb. 28 2000)

Six crew members of a civilian vessel were forced to abandon ship after the U.S. Navy refueling tanker USNS Yukon collided with it 27 Feb. outside Dubai's Jebel Ali port. The USNS Yukon, which provides fuel for ships and aircraft at sea with the U.S. Navy's Fifth Fleet, hit the M/V Inchcape-14 while trying to enter port, said a statement by the Fifth Fleet, which is based in the Gulf state of Bahrain. The 677-foot Yukon sustained minor damage and helped rescue the 6 crew members who were forced to jump off the 135-foot Inchcape-14. Inchcape's Dubai office would not comment on the condition of its vessel. The U.K.-based company is mainly involved in cargo shipping. The U.S. Navy statement said that harbor tugs helped keep the ship afloat and removed it from the busy traffic channel. The Navy statement said that the incident was under investigation. (Sun. Feb. 27 2000)

British police on 25 Feb. arrested 5 activists from the environmental group Greenpeace who had boarded a U.S. vessel M/V LOLCOS GRACE with genetically modified soya aboard off Wales. "They're still there -- 2 on the anchor chain & 3 on board -- and they'll stay there for as long as it takes," a spokesman for the group told Reuters. A spokesman for North Wales police said the campaigners, who stormed the ship early on 25 Feb., would be detained overnight & questioned. The ship, carrying 60,000 tons of soya belonging to U.S. grain gaint Cargill Inc, was bound for a processing plant in Liverpool. The soya was destined to be processed into animal feed, Greenpeace said. Cargill confirmed that the vessel had a cargo of U.S. soybeans, some of which were genetically modified. Greenpeace GM campaigner Charlie Kronick said police had used bolt cutters to remove 3 activists who were chained into the ship's anchor chamber & arrested them along with 2 others positioned on the anchor chain on the hull. The campaigners had blocked the anchor to stop the ship pulling it up & moving on to Anglesey to unload. Police said there had been no struggle. Earlier Greenpeace had said it would cling onto the ship until Cargill agreed to take the soya back to the U.S. Cargill argued that imports of genetically modified soybeans were fully regulated & had been approved as safe for use in food & feed in Britain & the rest of the EU since 1996." Many supermarkets in Britain have pledged to label foods which contain GM elements but there is no way of knowing if products such as milk & meat have come from animals that have eaten GM feed. Sorry, not a big deal. (Fri. Feb. 25 2000)

The Cyprus bulk carrier M/V VITASTAR (37,700 gross), Genoa for Dunkirk in ballast, had water ingress into a cylinder liner in lat 48 12N, long 05 32W, Feb 24. LOF signed. Towed to anchorage in Brest area by tug Abielle Flandre. (Sat. Feb. 26 2000)

The Estonian cargo vessel M/V Fiina Timber called for help from the British coastguard in the early hours of 25 Feb. after about 15 packages of timber fell overboard, tilting the ship about six degrees to its port side. The coastguard said a helicopter would fly out to survey the Fiina Timber -- languishing just south west of the small Scottish island of Tiree -- and that a tug would reach the ship in the early afternoon. ``The situation at the moment is stable,'' said the head of the area's coastguard. "With strong weather, however...we are concerned that this incident could possibly escalate." The 77-meter cargo ship, with its 10-man Swedish crew, sailed from Sweden for Warren Point in Northern Ireland when it lost part of its cargo. (Fri. Feb. 25 2000)

The Greek bulk carrier M/V SAMJOHN LIGHT (38,077 gross), Australia for San Nicolas with charcoal, grounded at Km 44, Martin Garcia Channel, Feb 21. Still aground Feb 23. Attempts to refloat by own means failed. LOF signed. (Thurs. Feb. 24 2000)

The Panamanian passenger vessel M/V CARNIVAL VICTORY (101,353 gross) had a fire in an elevator shaft between decks Nos.8 & 9 while being fitted out at Monfalcone Feb 17. Fire extinguished same day. Electrical cables & some cabins destroyed. (Wed. Feb. 23 2000)

The 8 crew members of a Syrian-flagged freighter M/V Lina Star (672-dwt) escaped safely on 21 Feb. when their vessel sank while anchored off Greece in Vatika Bay in the Laconia region of the southern Peloponnese. The crew -- one Egyptian and seven Syrian crewmen -- were rescued by a coast guard launch. Lina Star was bound for Algeria from Ukraine laden with soda. The vessel was thought to have temporarily anchored in the bay to shelter from southwesterly winds but began taking on water in its engine room. (Mon. Feb 21 2000)

Tanker M/T FRONT COMMANDER (157,863 gt, built 1999) and container vessel M/V HANG FENG (1,589 gt) were in collision in lat 22 16.7N, long 114 37.2E on Feb 19. Hang Feng sustained damage amidships, began taking water & listed to starboard. Twenty-seven containers fell overboard. Salvage tugs on scene. Front Commander sustained no damage. (Mon. Feb. 21 2000)

The Danish M/V THOR EMILIE (1,655 gross), Dunkirk for Porto Vesme with zinc concentrate, had an explosion & fire in engine-room and sank immediately in lat 37 32N, long 02 11E, Feb 17. 6 crew missing. The Thor Emilie went down 60 miles north of Algiers following an explosion near the engine room, according to Spain's Marine Rescue Service. The cause of the explosion was not known. One of the missing crewmen is Danish. The other 5 are from the Philippines. The vessel's Danish captain was picked up in good physical condition by the Italian commercial ship M/V Verdi that took part in the rescue operation. Rescue services said the captain was on watch at the bow of the ship at the time of the explosion. The captain told his rescuers he was the only crew member to make it into one of the ship's two lifeboats. (Sat. Feb. 19 2000)

An Emery Worldwide DC-8F freighter on Flight 17 crashed near Sacramento just after takeoff for Dayton late Wednesday, killing all 3 crew & sparking a huge fireball. FAA Western Region spokesman Jim Whitehead said the cargo jet crashed shortly after the pilot reported a "severe center of gravity problem," which refers to the way cargo is stowed in the aircraft's hold. Cargo shift suspected. (Thus. Feb. 17 2000)

The Carnival Cruise Lines ship M/V Carnival Destiny canceled its Caribbean port stops & sailed toward Miami after more than a day adrift in the ocean. It was near the Turks & Caicos Islands southeast of the Bahama Islands early Tuesday when one of two cycloconverters malfunctioned. Cycloconverters transmit electricity from a ship's diesel engines to a propulsion motor. The ship was carrying 2,956 passengers on a seven-day cruise. Passengers were promised full refunds for their cruise & air transportation and a 50% discount on a future 3- to 7-day cruise. (Turs. Feb. 17 2000)

Over 750 passengers were forced to abandon passenger vessel M/V Carousel, Feb 13, after she struck and over ran rocks off the Mexico's Yucatan, seriously damaging a propeller & causing a 50 ton oil spill. Contamination has been detected along surrounding beaches. (Thurs. Feb. 17 2000)

The Italian M/V Espresso Catania & the Madeira Islands-registered M/V Zafir rammed into each other early on 14 Feb. about 4 miles south of the port town of Santa Caterina, outside Punta Stilo, in the Calabria region at the toe of the Italian peninsula. The Zafir split apart & sank within minutes, while the Espresso Catania stayed afloat. Twenty crew members and & passengers on the Espresso Catania were escorted safely ashore. Fourteen Spanish sailors were believed to be on the Zafir. Three died, two were saved & 9 are missing. The Zafir's captain was among the victims. Helicopters & rescue boats are searching for survivors, but coast guard officials said the chances of finding anyone alive 8 hours later were extremely slim. The cause of the accident was not immediately clear. Weather conditions appeared to be good, with no fog. The Zafir, carrying material to make cement, had just left a nearby Italian port. The Italian vessel was on its way from northern Italy to Catania, Sicily, with a load of trucks. Officials at the Madeira Islands' shipping registry said the Zafir was owned by the Panama-based company Buckland Consulting Inc. Espresso Catania is beached at Guardavalle, south of Crotone. (Mon. Feb 14 2000)

The Liberian vehicle carrier M/V OLIVE ACE (38,772 gross), Antwerp for Japan, had engine problems & anchored in Flushing Roads Feb 12 to effect repairs. Proceeded Feb 13. (Mon. Feb. 14 2000)

The Norwegian vessel M/V FAKTOR, 793 gt (built 1971, had fire break out today between Staarheim & Isane in Nordfjorden following an explosion in some gas containers on board. After one hour the fire was extinguished & vessel was towed to Davik. (Sat. Feb. 12 2000)

The Hapag-Lloyd containership M/V Bonn Express has been delayed after a mechanical failure in the ship's steering mechanism caused it to run aground 11 Feb. in New York harbor. A U.S. Coast Guard spokesman said the 2,800-TEU ship had not sailed and was undergoing repairs. The Bonn Express is one of 13 vessels in the Grand Alliance "PAX" weekly service connecting Europe via North America with Asia. The ship was leaving Port Newark for Halifax and Europe. (Fri. Feb. 11 2000)

The Hong Kong container vessel M/V OOCL AMERICA (66.047 gt, built 1995) sustained heavy weather damage on a voyage ex-Long Beach for Kaohsiung on Jan. 31. There is major cargo damage. Severe weather Jan 29 in the Pacific Ocean & lost a large number of containers overboard. OOCL put the figure at around 300, but could not confirm exactly, as the vessel is still underway and is not expected to dock in Kaohsiung until Feb 8. The company said it will survey the damage then. A maritime attorney for cargo interests who had been contacted about the incident put the figure at 350 containers lost overboard & 217 still on board but crushed or bent out of usable. Another that lost cargo was K Line's M/V Astoria Bridge & two CSX Lines' ships slot chartered to M/V Maersk Sealand ..... M/V Sea-Land Hawaii ...... washed 21 x 40 ft boxes in to the sea .... M/V Sea-Land Pacific ...... lost 20 containers overboard ..." Major Loss In The Pacific! ...Exclusive pictures You'll Only See Here! - CLICK HERE (Thus. Feb. 10 2000)

Bahamas bulk carrier M/V MIRA NOR, 2,343 gross tons, built 1981, grounded in the Karmsundet, south of Haugesund on Feb 3 after experiencing steering system failure. (Mon. Feb. 7 2000)

The Panamanian vehicle carrier M/V ASIAN PARADE (55,680 gross), Dublin for Rotterdam with cars, grounded on the Codling Bank, off Dublin, in lat 53 08.02N, long 05 54.1W, Feb 3. Still aground Feb 4. Several tugs on scene. De-bunkering operations under way. (Sat. Feb. 5 2000)

The Singapore bulk carrier M/V NOL SCHEDAR (38,520 gross), Newcastle (Aus) for Sual with coal, grounded off Sual, Luzon Island, Jan 24. Refloated with tug assistance Jan 27. Emergency repairs to holes in her hull underway at Sual. (Fri. Feb. 4 2000)

The Liberian tanker M/T SLETREAL (5,451 gross) had an explosion on board while manuvering to load crude oil at Cardenas, Cuba, & partially sank Jan 31. 3 crew missing. 2 crew injured. Some spillage of oil occurred. (Wed. Feb. 2 2000)

Passing Japanese ships rescued 23 crewmen from the disabled Panama-registered cargo vessel M/V Yan Yang in the South China Sea & gave them into Philippine custody, the Navy said on 31 Jan. The M/V Yan Yang, laden with logs, was on its way to China from Kota Kinabalu in Malaysia on Friday when it ran into bad weather & its engine failed, Philippine navy chief Vice-Admiral Luisito Fernandez said. Two Japanese commercial vessels, one identified as the M/V Tsushima Maru, rescued the crew -- 22 Filipinos & a Myanmarese -- and turned them over to a Philippine Navy boat which was rushing to the scene. The Yan Yang was about 50 nautical miles from Scarborough Shoal, a rocky outcrop west of the Philippines' Luzon island, when its engine gave out, Fernandez said. There was no immediate word on what happened to the Yan Yang after its crew abandoned ship. (Tues. Feb. 1 2000)

The South Korean refrigerated M/V KYUNG CHUN (1,525 gt), Davao for Vladivostok, with bananas & pineapple, caught fire in engine-room 26 Jan in lat 12 13N, long 126 27E, 0808, Jan 26. Passing vessel responded & helped put fire out. No reported casualties. Vessel to be towed back to Cebu as fire destroyed her engine. (Tues. Feb. 1 2000)

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Special Articles From The Cargo letter for Feb. 2000

***Pirates More Dangerous .......... as the number of pirate attacks reported during 1999 rose around 40% from figures in 1998 & are now nearly 3 times as frequent as in 1991, according to an end of year report from the Int'l Maritime Bureau. There were 285 incidents during the past year, 113 of which took place in Indonesia. "Although more attacks are reported to the IMB Piracy Reporting Centre in Kuala Lumpur now than previously, there can be no doubt that attacks have increased substantially," says the IMB in the report. Crew deaths & ship hijackings are both down, despite the rise in incidents. Only 3 seafarers were reported killed by pirates last year & 2 missing, down from 78 in 1998, while hijackings fell from 17 to 8 last year. However, the numbers of pirates armed with guns or knives has risen. "The 1999 Annual Report once again highlights that modern piracy is violent, bloody and ruthless," said IMB deputy director Captain Jayant Abhyankar.

***Pirate Gets Death ........ as the leader of the pirate gang responsible for the hijacking of the M/V Marine Master last year was given the death sentence by a Chinese court this month. The Intermediate People's Court in Fangchenggang gave life sentences to 2 other members of the gang & a mixture of other penalties to the other 11 gang members. The death sentence follows hot on the heels of the execution of 13 men for the hijacking of the M/V Cheung Son. The Marine Master was hijacked in March last year, when 14 armed Myanmar pirates boarded the general cargo ship & forced the crew into swimming pool inflatables in which they drifted for 10 days before being rescued.

***Nigerian Pirates Nabbed ............ as the Nigerian Navy arrested 8 suspected pirates who specialize in hijacking boats used by oil companies in the Niger Delta area, state television reported on 20 Feb. The suspects were arrested near the southeastern Brass river while attempting to hijack a boat belonging to Royal Dutch/Shell's Nigerian oil producing unit. "Piracy, hijacking & kidnapping of oil workers on high seas have become a serious threat to the economy which will no longer be tolerated," the report quoted a naval officer as saying. Scores of workers for multinational companies producing Nigeria's oil have been kidnapped by youths from communities in the Niger Delta who are demanding a greater share of the region's oil wealth. US$338.

***Seized Tanker Puts Back To Sea ............ as the tanker M/T Volga-Neft-147 was seized Feb. 2 in the Gulf of Oman off the United Arab Emirates on suspicion it was carrying Iraqi oil. Military personnel on the cruiser USS Monterey stopped & boarded the ship after it failed to respond to routine queries. The tanker was sent to Oman, where technical problems stalled the unloading of 4,000 tons of oil cargo aboard the ship. On 18 Feb. the Russian tanker unloaded it's cargo & was released, more than 2 weeks after the vessel was detained. Russia has backed off its initial denials that the vessel could have been carrying illicit Iraqi oil. But it said more tests were needed, and commissioned a Swiss firm to conduct the tests. The U.S. said tests confirmed that the tanker was carrying Iraqi crude in violation of U.N. sanctions that bar Baghdad from selling oil unilaterally. The cargo is to be auctioned off, and some of the proceeds are to be used to pay for the U.N. sanctions monitoring operation. An additional 2 not so lucky ships seized by the U.S. Navy in the Gulf last month for smuggling Iraqi oil were auctioned on 20 Feb. in the UAE. The sale of a 3rd ship had not gone through because bids were far below the vessel's value. One vessel sold for US$517,000 while the 2nd fetched US$54.000. The Honduran-registered M/V Jazya 1, which sank off the coast of Abu Dhabi last month, was carrying heavy fuel auctioned from 1 of the 3 vessels & had been heading with its cargo to Somalia. Gulf News said the UAE Finance Ministry was in charge of the sale of the vessels, which was carried out at an Abu Dhabi port.

***This Month In U.S. Naval History ........ as on Feb. 28,1944, USS Trout (SS 202) was lost at sea on her 11th war patrol with all hands on board, after being spotted by a Japanese convoy. The sub had a distinguished history in World War II but was known in particular for one mission. In 1942, Trout delivered ammunition & weapons to the South Pacific island of Corregidor, which was preparing for a Japanese attack. This delivery, however, reduced Trout's weight to the point of not being able to submerge. To counter this problem, Trout departed Corregidor with 20 tons of gold, silver & securities, protecting the U.S. booty & allowing the vessel to submerge & safely return to Pearl Harbor. Trout is credited with sinking 23 enemy ships (87,000 tons). The sub was awarded 11 battle stars & the Presidential Unit Citation for it's second, 3rd & 5th war patrols.

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Vessel Loss Dispatches For January 2000

Maltese tanker M/T MICHAEL (66,942 gt, built 1977), loaded with 90,000 barrels of oil, grounded at entrance to Delaware Bay on Jan 29. Lightering barge is alongside vessel and lightering operations are in hand before next refloating attempt. (Mon. Jan. 31 2000)

The Malaysian M/V YIAW YANG (5,577 gross), Sandakan for China, developed a severe list to starboard, flooding in Holds Nos. 1 & 2 and sank in lat 15 31N, long 117 03E, Jan 27. All crew rescued safely. (Sat. Jan. 29 2000)

The St.Vincent & Grenadines M/V RUI DA (4,942 gross), Malaysia for China with logs, took water & sank in about lat 11 47.3N, long 109 54.5E, Jan 27. All crew rescued. (Fri. Jan. 28 2000)

The Panamanian bulk carrier M/V MIN NOBLE (35,561 gross), for Port Muhammad Bin Qasim with coal, grounded between bouys 7 & 9 in the approach channel to the port Jan 24. Refloated same day & berthed Jan 26. To be inspected after discharge completed. (Thurs. Jan. 27 2000)

Twenty-three crew members of a the M/V Yiew Ying were rescued in South China Sea in a rescue operation mounted by the Hong Kong Maritime Rescue Coordination Center. The center immediately mounted a search & rescue operation by alerting ships in the vicinity to locate the Cambodia-registered log carrier after it was informed of the ship's emergency situation at around 4:00 am 26 Feb., said the spokesman. At 7:50 pm, the center established communications with the motor tanker M/T Kwan Siu, which had responded to the appeal & arrived at the scene, about 429 nautical miles southeast from Hong Kong. The 117-meter cargo vessel M/V Yiew Ying was listing 35 degrees to starboard amid northeasterly wind of force 7 to 8 and very rough sea, according to a report of "Kwan Siu." Of the 23 crew members, 22 Filipinos & one Burmese, 14 boarded "Kwan Siu" and the others boarded M/V Tsushima, a Japanese vessel, which later joined the operation. At around 9:00 am today, as "Yiew Ying" continued to take in water, the captain decided to abandon the ship. (Wed. Jan. 26 2000)

The Maltese bulk carrier M/V SEMENA (13,457 gross), in ballast, grounded off Tuapse, while waiting to load, in lat 44 20.1N, long 38 31.4E, Jan 22. Still aground Jan 25. No apparent damage. (Wed. Jan. 26 2000)

M/V Star Admiral is presumed sunk. SOS & crew of 24 safely rescued. Details pending. (Tues. Jan. 25 2000)

The Panamanian research vessel M/V TEKNIK PUTRA (1,009 gross) grounded on Thursday Island, in lat 10 34.28S, long 142 14.9E, Jan 24. Refloated with tug assistance same day. Anchored at Cape York. No apparent damage. (Tues. Jan. 25 2000)

The Liberian bulk carrier M/V DECURION (34,839 gross), from Argentina with rice, was in collision with the Panamanian container vessel M/V MSC GIOVANNA (27,103 gross) off Cape Town Jan 21. Decurion holed & down by stern, however, proceeded to Cape Town under own power. MSC Giovanna sustained minor damage & proceeded for Durban. (Mon. Jan. 24 2000)

The Taiwan M/V YU TAI NO.6 (2,981 gross) sank in lat 24 57N, long 120 30E, Jan 20. 1 crew member rescued safely. 1 sighted in water. Search continuing. (Sat. Jan. 22 2000)

The Brazilian tanker M/T LONDRINA (27,063 gross), with cargo fuel oil, reported drifting 80 miles north-west of Barbados Jan 19. Taken in tow by tug Smit Curacao bound Barbados, where ETA Jan 20. (Fri. Jan. 21 2000)

A crankcase explosion on 20 Jan. in the main engine of 6,600-TEU M/V Sovereign Maersk resulted in the complete loss of propulsive power and the abandonment of a voyage from Hong Kong to Long Beach. The vessel, which is in the largest class of containerships afloat, was taken in tow and is expected to reach Kobe on 26 Jan., where it will discharge all its cargo. The Sovereign Maersk is the first of Maersk Sealand's 9 ultra-large "S-class" containerships. It was named after M/V Queen of Denmark in 1997 has been featured frequently in the line's publicity. The explosion injured the ship's first engineer, though not seriously. The engine room had to be flooded with CO2 gas to extinguish the fire. Cause of the explosion wasn't immediately known. The Sovereign Maersk's engine was of a type installed in other containerships, including Maersk's 6, slightly smaller, K-type containerships, said Jesper Kjaedegaard, Sr. V.P. of A.P. Moller. Kjaedegaard also pointed to the advantage of his organization's size in responding to a problem like this. It was fortunate that a powerful A.P. Moller tug was on hand to take the Sovereign Maersk in tow, avoiding the need to discuss salvage, and that the 3,600-TEU M/V Sea-Land Initiative could be diverted to Kobe to load the Sovereign Maersk's boxes for Long Beach. (Thurs. Jan. 20 2000)

The Greek M/V TORM BROOKLYN (13,688 gross) was reported disabled 800 miles south-east of Bermuda Jan 15. Tug proceeding. ETA Jan 19. (Thurs. Jan. 20 2000)

The Norwegian M/V ALUTRANS (1,555 gross), Ghent for Rausand with aluminium slag, grounded at Gurskoya Jan 16. Subsequently arrived Molde Jan 17 with a severe list and taking water. (Wed. Jan. 19 2000)

The Indian tanker M/T RICHA (6,681 gross), with lubricating oil, was disabled by an engine-room fire in abt lat 19 47N, long 87 30E, Jan 15. In lat 19 40N, long 87 28.7E, Jan 17 and requires towage. (Tues. Jan. 18 2000)

Antugua & Barbuda vessel M/V MEMEL, (2,997 tons gross, built 1999) had fire in engine-room in lat 44 46.7N long 08 56W Jan 15. Main engine inoperable. Being towed to Corunna by salvage tug Ibaizabal Uno. (Mon. Jan. 17 2000)

The Faroe Islands refrigerated M/V HALGAFELLI (1,957 gt) grounded north of Anda Light in the Vesteraalen Islands. Crew rescued and brought to Sortland. Vessel refloated herself early today, drifted against Andoya Island with large list & sank. (Thurs. Jan. 13 2000)

Syrian M/V LADY HADIL (481 gt) grounded on Irwas Island, near Tartous 1230, Dec 27, due heavy storms. No refloating attempts made to date. (Wed. Jan. 12 2000)

A freak accident involving a drifting ocean cargo container may have caused the British F/V Solway Harvester to sink on Jan. 11 & claim the lives of its 7 crew members. Plastic vats of mayonnaise found near the sinking site of the scallop trawler in the Irish Sea have raised the possibility it rammed into a lost freight container, the Scottish Scallop Assn. said. "There were a lot of mayonnaise bottles found round about the scene of the search so possibly they could have come from a breached container," said John Hermse, the group's secretary. "If one of those containers was floating semi-submerged and the boat rolled over the top of it, then the ship would immediately lose bouyancy, turn over and sink. So it's certaintly a theory to pursue," he added. Marine investigators said 3 freight containers were lost overboard in the Irish Sea from a cargo vessel at the beginning of Nov. and & of them were still missing. But a spokesman for Britain's Maritime & Coastguard Agency said it was unlikely a container could stay afloat for that long, and added it was too early to speculate why the ship sank. Remains of the 71-foot Harvester were found using sonar, but bad weather has so far prevented marine investigators from starting their probe. All 7 fisherman were from neighbouring Scottish villages, and the tragedy has hit the tight-knit Scottish fishing community hard. Fishing groups have said it is highly unlikely a ship the size of the Harvester would sink simply due to bad weather. (Tues. 11 Jan. 2000)

Singapore bulker M/V J. MARION SKY (23,277 gt, built 1991) was in collision with the 1999-built Antigua & Barbuda M/V INDUSTRIAL CENTURY (4,246 gt, built 1999) in lat 20 08N, long 83 32W, in clear weather on Jan 7. The handymax vessel, carrying a cargo of alumina hydrate and sand, sank nine minutes after the collision and 19 of the ship's 21 Philippine crew were rescued. The master of the ship & another crewmember have not been found, and the search for them has been abandoned. The survivors were picked up by the badly-damaged Industrial Century's sister ship M/V Industrial Beacon, which was in the area at the time of the incident. The Century is heading for Curacao for repairs. The cause of the collision is unknown. (Mon. Jan. 10 2000)

The Bahamas passenger vessel M/V ISLAND BREEZE (31,793 gross), Casablanca for Tenerife with passengers, had boiler problems after sailing Funchal on Jan 5 & put back to Funchal Jan 6. Some passengers returning to UK, some remain on board. (Sat. Jan. 8 2000)

The Norwegian ferry M/V BARONEN (172 gross), Bergen for Olen with passengers, struck an unidentified object near the Ruanane Light, off Flesland, Jan 5. Moored Flesland same day. Sustained damage to bow section & taking water. Reported in danger of sinking. (Fri. Jan. 7 2000)

The Russian M/V DVINA (2,426 gross), Brightlingsea for River Humber with timber, grounded while outbound from Brightlingsea Jan 1. Refloated Jan 5 and proceeded. No pollution. May have sustained rudder damage. (Thurs. Jan. 6 2000)

The Panama M/V WOO YANG GLORY (2,415 gross), Kwangyang for Nagoya with steel, grounded off Mutsure Island Jan 3. Refloated with tug assistance Jan 4 and towed to Wakamatsu for inspection. Expected to have sustained bottom damage. (Wed. Jan. 5 2000)

The Cyprus bulk carrier M/V AIS MAMAS (10,273 gross), West Africa for India with logs, had water ingress into Hold No.1 off Cape Columbine Jan 1. All crew abandoned vessel & safely rescued. Tug Red Toucan proceeding, ETA Jan 3. Will tow to Saldanha Bay. (Tues. Jan. 4 2000)

The Ukrainian cargo ship M/V Tiksi (2,300 gross), flying a Cambodian flag, sank early 2 Jan. in the Black Sea and 1 crew member drowned, the Russian Emergency Situations Ministry reported. The other 11 crew members were rescued from life boats about 8 miles from the Russian shore near the resort of Dzhugba, a duty officer in Moscow said. They were taken to shore on a tugboat. The vessel was sailing between Nikolayev, Ukraine & Poti, Georgia when it went down. The ministry said that the cause of the sinking was unknown, but it may have been stormy weather. No other details were available. (Sun. Jan. 2, 2000)

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Special Articles From The Cargo letter for Jan. 2000

***Dead Pirates Tell No Tales .......... as Chinese authorities executed 13 people on 28 Jan. for murder & a string of attacks on ships, a sign the country is cracking down on rampant piracy. The executions were carried out in Shanwei, a port city in Guangdong province, according to police and a statement by the Shanwei court titled "Doomsday arrives for the `evil monsters' of the sea." Those put to death included an Indonesian & 12 Chinese. They were among 37 gang members convicted by the court last year of crimes including robbery and murder in the Nov. 1998 hijacking of the freighter M/V Chang Sheng. The gang killed 23 sailors in the attack. One pirate was sentenced to life in prison, and sentences for 17 others ranged from one year to 12 years in prison. Six were convicted of robbery but did not receive jail time, for which we ask "WHY NOT?". The case has been described as a signal that China is finally cracking down on widespread piracy & corrupt officials who have tolerated it. In previous cases, piracy suspects were released by local authorities and sometimes went on to commit other crimes. The ringleader in the M/V Chang Sheng case was Sony Wei, the Indonesian, according to police.

***New Anti-Pirate Measures ........... as authorities at the Sri Lankan port of Colombo have started posting armed soldiers at night on selected cargo ships. The new service, which is free of charge to shipowners, is part of the Sri Lankan government's effort to reduce pirate attacks in its ports. The government reports that it's new anti-piracy procedures have already made a "noticeable impact." For many years industry groups have been pressing Sri Lanka to improve its port security. "This measure should certainly help to achieve this goal & should set an example for port authorities facing similar problems," said Thomas Timlen of Baltic & Int'l Maritime Council.

***Pirate Attacks Up 40% For 1999

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 24 (Reuters) Pirate attacks worldwide surged 40 percent in 1999 as economic and political troubles in Indonesia spurred a dramatic increase in incidents in Southeast Asia.

The Int'l Maritime Bureau (IMB) said in its annual report on 24 Jan. that the number of actual & attempted pirate raids increased to 285 last year from 202 in 1998. But the number of seafarers killed fell to 3 last year from 78 in 1998. "This could be due to greater efforts by governments to combat piracy," the report said, citing the recent sentencing to death of 13 pirates in China.

Indonesia accounted for 113 of the attacks, almost double its 1998 total of 60 and the lion's share of worldwide raids

"We believe it was due to the economic situation & political instability," Noel Choong, regional manager of the IMB's Piracy Reporting Centre in Malaysia's capital Kuala Lumpur, told Reuters. He was referring to upheavals in Indonesia after the resignation of former President Suharto in 1998.


There was also a dramatic increase in the number of attacks in the Singapore Strait, which separates Singapore island from Indonesia's Riau Archipelago and links the Strait of Malacca with the South China Sea. There were 13 compared with just one in 1998. But Choong said the frequency of attacks in that area dropped sharply after the Singapore Coast Guard and the Indonesian Marine Police stepped up patrols, and no incidents were reported in the final three months of 1999.

"It is a very clear indication that with cooperation, authorities can reduce piracy or eradicate it altogether," Choong said. The IMB has asked Indonesia to mount more patrols in its waters. ``There may be a decline in attacks if the Indonesian authorities are serious about eradicating piracy in their region,'' Choong said.

Seven countries or regions accounted for more than two thirds of the attacks -- Indonesia (113), Bangladesh (23), Malaysia (18), India (14), Singapore Strait (13), Somalia (11) & Nigeria (11).

Attacks dropped from 15 to 6 in the Philippines and from 10 to 2 in Ecuador.

Most of the attacks -- 217 of 285 - involved pirates boarding ships. There was a decrease in the number of hijackings to eight from 17. There were also fewer assaults on crews, but many more incidents of crews taken hostage. Knives rather than guns were the most common weapon.


The IMB cited government efforts to combat piracy as a possible explanation for the dramatic decline in the number of crew killed last year.

"In the last year, both India and China have arrested alleged ship hijackers and China recently sentenced to death 13 of the hijackers of MV Cheung Son, one of the country's most brutal recent cases of piracy involving the murder of 23 Chinese seamen," it said. Last month, a court in China's southern province of Guangdong sentenced the 13 men, all Chinese except for one Indonesian, to death for clubbing the seamen to death and throwing their bodies overboard tied to weights. The pirates had posed as Chinese paramilitary police and hijacked the 10,373 GRT bulk carrier M/V Cheung Son in November 1998.

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Explore Vessel Loss For The Year 2000

Keep Exploring At Our Database Which Features Losses At 1999 & Before

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NOTE: Due to seasonal weather there were many, many more cargo vessel groundings, barge losses, fires & other disasters we had no room to report. Large loss of life was reported in the fishing fleets and on ferries, but it does not involve cargo and is nor reported. It was another BAD month at sea. We mourn the many vessels lost.


 NOTE: The historic dangers of carriage by sea continue to be quite real. Shippers must be encouraged to purchase high quality marine cargo insurance from their freight forwarder or customs broker. It's dangerous out there. Buy the cargo insurance, before the loss!


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