News

Wheelhouse Weekly – April 18, 2011

April 18th 2011

 

– Bridging the Information Gap With E-News You Can Use –

Volume 15 . . . . . Number 16. . . . April 18, 2011

STORIES COVERED

Did you miss a week? Back editions of the Wheelhouse Weekly are available in the section.


MM&P CLOSED APRIL 22 FOR GOOD FRIDAY

MM&P port offices, MM&P Plans, MM&P headquarters and the MM&P Federal Credit Union will be closed on April 22 for Good Friday.


IMO LEGAL COMMITTEE CALLS ON STATES TO FULLY IMPLEMENT GUIDELINES ON FAIR TREATMENT OF SEAFARERS

The International Maritime Organization (IMO) Legal Committee has issued a draft Assembly resolution aimed at promoting compliance with the 2006 IMO/ILO Guidelines on fair treatment of seafarers in the event of a maritime accident. The draft resolution invites Member States to consider amending their national legislation to give full and complete effect to the Guidelines on Fair Treatment of Seafarers and asks governments to respect the principles in the guidelines in other circumstances where seafarers are detained.

It should be noted that the United States has objected to provisions in the Code for Accident Investigations that give mandatory effect to the IMO/ILO guidelines. The United States position is that the mandatory provisions in the Code “create seafarers rights during an investigation” and it says that for this reason it does not intend to implement them.

The draft resolution reiterates the importance of the guidelines and invites Member Governments, as a matter of urgency, to bring this resolution to the attention of government officials, in particular those involved in the administration of justice, who may be involved in decisions and procedures affecting the treatment of seafarers involved in maritime accidents, as well as shipowners and seafarers and their respective organizations, and invites them to inform the Legal Committee of the means by which this request has been implemented.

The draft resolution will be submitted, through the IMO Council, to the IMO Assembly when it meets for its 27th session from Nov. 21-30 of this year and also to the International Labor Organization (ILO) Governing Body, which meets in June 2011.

The draft resolution notes that a number of incidents have taken place since the adoption of the guidelines in 2006 in which seafarers on ships that have been involved in maritime accidents have been detained for prolonged periods, raising questions about whether they have been treated fairly in full accordance with the principles set out in the guidelines.

The draft resolution also recognizes that the guidelines should be implemented alongside the IMO Code of the International Standards and Recommended Practices for a Safety Investigation into a Marine Casualty or Marine Accident, which has been made mandatory by way of amendments to the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) chapter XI-1, which entered into force on Jan. 1, 2010.


SOUTH AFRICA SAYS VESSELS IN ITS PORTS MUST HAVE LOCAL WEAPONS PERMIT TO CARRY ARMS

Business Day magazine has reported that South Africa’s Society of Master Mariners is warning international crews that the local police will arrest masters of ships that have firearms on board without the appropriate local permit. A spokesman for the group expressed extreme concern over the recent arrests of visiting ships’ masters in local ports. Four ships’ masters have reportedly been arrested in the past six weeks. Under local regulations, a permit must be requested 21 days in advance of the ship’s arrival in a South African port.


MITAGS HEAD GLEN PAINE ELECTED PRESIDENT OF SHIP OPERATIONS COOPERATIVE PROGRAM

The Ship Operations Cooperative Program (SOCP) has announced the election of Glen Paine, executive director of the Maritime Institute of Technology and Graduate Studies (MITAGS), the Pacific Maritime Institute (PMI), and the Conference Center at the Maritime Institute (CCMIT), to a one-year term as president. SOCP is a government-industry organization dedicated to addressing and promoting commercial operations through the identification, development and application of new methods, procedures and technologies. The organization’s primary objective is to improve competitiveness, safety and environmental responsiveness of U.S. vessel operations.


IN AT-RISK AREAS, MASTERS SHOULD CONSIDER KEEPING AUTOMATIC IDENTIFICATION SYSTEMS ACTIVATED

The international anti-piracy forces have revised a previous recommendation that ship-borne automatic identification systems (AIS) be turned off in areas that are at high-risk of pirate attack. The new recommendation is to leave AIS transmitting across the entire high-risk area, with transmission restricted to ship’s identity, position, course, speed, navigational status and safety-related information. In the event that AIS has been switched off during transit and an attack occurs, the authorities underline the fact that AIS should immediately be reactivated.

The new guidance is intended to ensure that counter-piracy naval operations have the required data from AIS transmissions to track real-time positions of merchant ships. The decision on AIS policy remains at the discretion of the master.


LABOR SLAMS PLAN BY OHIO GOVERNOR TO OUTSOURCE STATE JOBS

Ohio Gov. John Kasich, who has spearheaded the move in his state to deny bargaining rights to public sector employees, is under scrutiny again, this time for a budget proposal to allow contracting out for 75 years any state service to any applicant that the state budget and management director (OBM)—a political appointee—“deems qualified.” The winning contractors would not necessarily be required to pay business tax on gross receipts or on any income generated for providing public services.

The provision appears on pages 261-266 of the Republican governor’s proposed budget. According to a spokesman for the AFL-CIO, besides eliminating the jobs of Ohio state workers, the proposal could negatively impact the state’s budget. The governor’s proposal does not require that the winning bidder be current on taxes, operate a safe workplace, pay a legal wage, or even be an Ohio company that employs Ohioans. No other authority in the state, not even the state’s Controlling Board, which oversees state contracts, would be able to review the deal.

This proposal would “transform the OBM director into an unaccountable modern day czar,” said a spokesman for an Ohio-based labor group, who theorized that under the proposal, a political campaign donor with an outstanding tax bill who operates a call center in Bangladesh, where he or she pays workers $4 per day, would pay no business taxes on income from a state contract for—as an example–providing job re-training advice to unemployed Ohioans over the phone. 


NUMBER OF PIRATE ATTACKS SPIKES IN FIRST QUARTER

The International Maritime Bureau (IMB) said the number of pirate attacks rose again in the first quarter of 2011, primarily because of a surge in incidents off the coast of Somalia. The IMB reported that 142 attacks took place between January and March, 97 of them off the Somali coast. That number was three times higher than the number of attacks which took place last year off Somalia. Among the 18 ships seized worldwide were three very large tankers. Almost 350 mariners were captured. IMB said seven crewmembers were murdered by pirates and 34 were injured.

IMB Director Pottengal Mukundan linked the dramatic increase in violence to the increasing number of international naval patrols, which are apparently making the pirates more desperate. Mukundan said that Somali pirates were holding captive 596 crew members on 28 ships as of March 31.


SECURITY COUNCIL FAST TRACKS PLAN TO CREATE NEW PIRACY COURTS

The United Nations Security Council called last week for the establishment of new courts, prisons and laws to deal with the growing problem of Somali piracy. The vote in favor of a Russian-drafted resolution was unanimous. The council called on UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon to prepare recommendations on setting up the courts within two months.

A central part of the new resolution would be the creation of specialized courts to try Somali pirates, including a new court based outside Somalia. Vitaly Churkin, the Russian envoy to the UN, said his plan represents “the first practical step in the direction of setting up an effective judicial mechanism capable of a credible reliable solution to the problem of bringing pirates to justice.”

UN Piracy Advisor Jack Lang laid the framework for the resolution when he proposed use of the international court in Arusha, Tanzania, where cases from the 1994 genocide in Rwanda have been heard. Lang also proposed the establishment of special courts in the northern Somali districts of Somaliland and Puntland. The ruling authorities in Somaliland recently opened a UN-funded prison for pirates, although they said they could not yet begin to accept pirates being detained by other countries.

The Security Council appealed to governments and the international shipping community to contribute to a trust fund set up to pay for judicial- and detention-related projects.


PIRATES RELEASE BELUGA NOMINATION AND THOR NEXUS

The Antigua-and-Barbuda-flagged BELUGA NOMINATION, on which three crewmembers perished, has finally been released from pirate control. The ship had been hijacked Jan. 22. The 27 crewmembers aboard the second vessel, the bulker THOR NEXUS, are reportedly all in good health. Pirates claim to have received $5 million for each of the two ships.

When the BELUGA NOMINATION was attacked, the crew sent out distress signals, locked themselves in the citadel and steered towards the Seychelles. Eventually the pirates gained entry to the citadel and captured the crew. At around this time, a Seychelles coast guard patrol arrived and killed a pirate in an attempt to free the vessel. In the melee that followed, one crewmember was shot dead and four others escaped to the open sea in a lifeboat. Only two of the four were found. The remaining seven crewmembers, including the ship’s master, were held captive until the vessel was released last Wednesday.


INTERNATIONAL SHIP OPERATORS WANT MILITARY TO GO AFTER MOTHER SHIPS

Two leaders of the international shipping community, International Chamber of Shipping Chairman Spyros Polemis and V Ships President Roberto Giorgi, are among those pushing international naval forces to try new strategies to neutralize the activities of mother ships, which are dramatically extending the pirates’ attack range in the Indian Ocean. Polemis wants naval forces to disable mother ships by throwing nets into their propellers. Giorgi, on the other hand, says naval forces should tail mother ships and not allow pirate skiffs to depart from them.

Both men said their strategies would have to be implemented on a comprehensive scale to be successful, and could not simply target certain mother ships piecemeal. Polemis said the pirates could be compelled to leave the crew aboard the mother ships unharmed in return for their own lives. He said the strategy would only be effective if implemented on the high seas, not on hijacked ships anchored in Somali waters, where the vessels could not be recovered and crewmembers would become hostages ashore. The men were quoted in the March 31 issue of “Fairplay.”


CAMM ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING APRIL 27-29 AT MITAGS

The Council of American Master Mariners (CAMM) will hold its Annual Meeting and Professional Development Conference April 27-29 at MITAGS. The topic of the conference is “The Master and the Burden of Regulations.” Congressman Elijah E. Cummings (D-Md.), ranking member of the Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation, will be the keynote speaker. Among the other speakers will be MM&P Pilots Group Vice President George Quick. To find out more and to register, go to http://www.mastermariner.org.


UNITED INLAND GROUP-PACIFIC MARITIME REGION MEETINGS

The following dates, times and locations have been selected for UIG-PMR meetings in the Puget Sound region for the first half of 2011.

Tuesday, May 10 – Anacortes (site TBD: 1000-1200 and 1500-1700)

Thursday, June 9 – Edmonds Office: 1000-1200


SCHEDULE FOR 2011 D-BOOK MEMBERSHIP COURSE

The Offshore Division Orientation Course, formerly called the D-Book Membership Course, will be held at regular intervals throughout 2011.

The schedule is as follows (but please note that course dates may change depending on the number of participants who sign up): June 10-11 and Oct. 21-22 at MM&P headquarters in Linthicum Heights; Oct. 13-14 in Los Angeles/Long Beach; and Nov. 8-9 in New Orleans.

There is no sea-time requirement to take the course. All Offshore applicants, potential transferees from other membership groups and other interested Offshore members are urged to attend.

If you want to attend the course, please RSVP to the local hiring hall where the class is offered or, in the case of a course planned for headquarters, to Mary Seidman at mseidman@bridgedeck.org.


CRUISE SHIP COLLIDES WITH CARGO SHIP ON DANUBE

A cruise ship and a cargo ship collided last week in a Danube River channel near Bratislava. The authorities said no one was injured when the Maltese cruise ship VIKTORIA carrying 160 tourists collided with the cargo ship BAVARI 52. Officials are investigating the cause of the collision.


OLD MUNITIONS DISCOVERED AT SEATTLE PIER

A large-scale cleanup at Seattle’s Pier 91 cruise terminal has unearthed a second cache of military munitions. The first batch of munitions, some of which date back to World War II, were discovered last October during a routine security dive. The Seattle cruise port was once used as a military depot. The authorities have now deemed the pier safe for the scheduled cruise season.


MITAGS ACADEMIC NOTES

Between now and the end of June, the following courses are scheduled at MITAGS.  For class availability or information on MITAGS courses and programs, contact Kelly Michielli, Admissions Coordinator, toll free at 866-656-5568 or e-mail: admissions@mitags.org.

AB – Able Bodied Seaman: 6/13
AIS – Automatic Identification Systems: 5/12
ARPA – Automated Radar Plotting Aids: 5/16

BRMP – Bridge Resource Management for Pilots: 5/9, 6/6
BST – Basic Safety Training: 6/27

[CMM – Chief Mate and Master Courses]
CMM-ADVWX � Advanced Meteorology: 6/12
CMM-ADVSTB � Advanced Stability: 6/27
CMM-CHS II � Advanced Cargo Operations (week 2): 4/25
CMM-ECDIS � Electronic Chart Display and Information Systems: 5/23
CMM-MPP � Marine Propulsion Plants: 6/13
CMM-SHMGT I – Ship Management (week 1): 5/2
CMM-SHMGT II – Ship Management (week 2): 5/9
CMM-SHS-ADV-I � Advanced Shiphandling (week 1): 5/16, 6/13
CMM-SHS-ADV-I I � Advanced Shiphandling (week 2): 4/25, 5/23, 6/20
CMM-VPEN � Voyage Planning and Electronic Navigation: 5/16
CMM-WKP � Advanced Watchkeeping: 6/20

CNAV � Celestial Navigation: 5/2

ENVIRO-Regs Permit � Environmental Regulations Permit: 5/24
EP � Emergency Procedures: 4/27

FF-BADV � Combined Basic and Advanced Fire Fighting: 6/27
FSM � Fatique, Sleep and Medications for Pilots: 6/8

HAZ � Hazardous Materials (5 day): 6/13

LAP-ORG 3rd � License Advancement Program for Original 3/Mate: 6/6

LEG – Legal Aspects of Pilotage: 5/9, 6/6

MEDIA-RSP � Media Response Workshop: 5/13
MED-PIC – Medical Person In Charge: 5/2, 6/13
MED-PRO – Medical Care Provider: 5/2, 6/13
MED-DOT-DA – Dept. of Transportation Drug & Alcohol Testing: 5/7, 6/18

MSC-CBRD1 � Basic Chemical, Biological, Radiological Defense: 6/10
MSC-DC � Damage Control: 6/6
MSC -SMA � Military Sealift Command Small Arms Qualification: 6/6

ROR-1 – Radar Observer Renewal Evening Classes: 4/20, 5/11, 5/25, 6/16, 6/28
ROR-1 – Radar Observer Renewal Day Class: 6/16
ROP-5 � Radar Observer Original and Renewal: 5/2

SAR � Search and Rescue: 4/25
SEC-VCF � Security Officer, Vessel, Company & Facility: 5/9
SHS-BAS � Basic Shiphandling: 6/20
SHS-EMR3 � Emergency Shiphandling for Pilots: 6/8
SHS-EMR5 � Emergency Shiphandling: 5/2

TPIC � Tankerman Person in Charge: 5/16

…remember: If you can’t make the class, make the call.  Be courteous, don’t be a “no show.”

Check the MITAGS website at www.mitags.org for course descriptions associated with the course title abbreviations, and schedule revisions. For class availability or info on MITAGS courses and programs, contact admissions toll-free at 866-656-5568 or e-mail: admissions@mitags.org


PMI ACADEMIC NOTES

Schedule of Courses – Please also see our schedule online at www.mates.org

For registration, call our registrar, Jennifer Pitzen, at (206) 838-1126

April 2011

23rd    Medical DOT
18-29  Medical Person-in-Charge
25th    Radar Renewal
25-29  Basic Meteorology

May 2011

2-13    Basic Watchkeeping
16th    Radar Renewal
16-20  Medical Care Provider
16-27  Medical Person-In-Charge
17-18   Environmental Regulations/VGP
21st     Medical DOT
23-25  Fast Rescue Boat
23-27  ECDIS
23-27  Management, Communication, and Leadership
25th    Flashing Light

June 2011

2-3      Vessel Security Officer
6-24    Terrestrial and Coastal Navigation
13-24  GMDSS
20-22 Fast Rescue Boat
20-24 ECDIS
27-29  Emergency Procedures
30-1    Search and Rescue


MM&P MARKET WATCH AS OF 4-15-11

D O W N A S D A Q S & P 500
12,285.15 2,760.22 1,314.52
Fund Name & Trading Symbol
 Closing
Price
 Vanguard Asset Allocation Fund (VAARX)
57.58
 Vanguard 500 Index Fund (VFINX)
121.64
 Vanguard Extended Market Index Fund (VEXMX)
44.41
 Vanguard International Growth Fund (VWIGX)
20.31
 Vanguard Morgan Growth Fund (VMRGX)
18.96
 Vanguard Windsor II Fund (VWNFX)
27.31
 Vanguard GNMA Fund (VFIIX)
10.77
 Vanguard Growth Index Fund (VIGRX)
32.93
 Vanguard High Yield Corporate (VWEHX)
5.83
 Vanguard LifeStrategy Conservative Growth (VSCGX)
16.77
 Vanguard LifeStrategy Growth Fund (VASGX)
23.09
 Vanguard LifeStrategy Income Fund (VASIX)
14.26
 Vanguard LifeStrategy Moderate Growth (VSMGX)
20.32
 Vanguard Target Retirement 2005 (VTOVX)
12.07
 Vanguard Target Retirement 2015 (VTXVX)
12.87
 Vanguard Target Retirement 2025 (VTTVX)
13.16
 Vanguard Target Retirement 2035 (VTTHX)
13.74
 Vanguard Target Retirement 2045 (VTIVX)
14.17
 Vanguard Total Bond Index (VBMFX)
10.58
 Vanguard Total Stock Market Index Fund (VTSMX)
33.29
 Chase Growth Fund (CHASX)
18.41
 Fidelity Asset Manager (FASMX)
15.94
 Fidelity Growth and Income (FGRIX)
19.16
 Fidelity Intermediate bond Fund (FTHRX)
10.60
 Fidelity Magellan Fund (FMAGX)
74.45
 Fidelity Value Fund (FDVLX)
73.65
 Fidelity Equity-Income II Fund (FEQTX)
19.32
 Fidelity Blue Chip Growth Fund (FBGRX)
47.59
 Fidelity Diversified International Fund (FDIVX)
31.47
 Fidelity Dividend Growth Fund (FDGFX)
30.11
 Fidelity Freedom Income (FFFAX)
11.52
 Fidelity Freedom 2000 (FFFBX)
12.23
 Fidelity Freedom 2010 (FFFCX)
14.12
 Fidelity Freedom 2020 (FFFDX)
14.40
 Fidelity Freedom 2030 (FFFEX)
14.45
 Fidelity Freedom 2040 (FFFFX)
8.44
 Fidelity Freedom 2050 (FFFHX)
9.90
 Fidelity Total Bond Fund (FTBFX)
10.80
 Spartan Extended market Index Fund (FSEMX)
40.40
 Spartan US Equity Index Fund (FUSEX)
46.74
 Domini Social Equity Fund (DSEFX)
31.63



The MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly is the official electronic newsletter of the International Organization of Masters, Mates, and Pilots, ILA, AFL-CIO, 700 Maritime Blvd. Suite B, Linthicum Heights, MD 21090-1953. Phone: 410-850-8700; Fax: 410-850-0973; Email: iommp@bridgedeck.org. For further info or to subscribe contact Lisa Rosenthal at lrosenthal@bridgedeck.org. The Wheelhouse Weekly is sent via Email to MM&P-contracted vessels at sea and is posted on our web page.

© 2011, International Organization of Masters, Mates & Pilots. All the material contained in this publication is protected by copyright. For permission to reprint text from the Weekly, contact the MM&P Communications Department: lrosenthal@bridgedeck.org. For changes of address, contact Lisa Rosenthal at lrosenthal@bridgedeck.org.




IOMMP

IOMMP

IOMMP

Latest posts by IOMMP (see all)