News

Wheelhouse Weekly – August 30, 2011

August 30th 2011

 

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

Volume 15 . . . . . Number 35. . . . August 30, 2011

STORIES COVERED

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


MM&P CLOSED SEPT. 5 FOR LABOR DAY

All MM&P port offices, the MM&P Health & Benefit Plans, the MM&P Federal Credit Union and MM&P headquarters will be closed on Monday, Sept. 5, for Labor Day.


HURRICANE IRENE KILLS AT LEAST 33, DOWNS POWER LINES AND TREES, CAUSES MASSIVE FLOODING

Huge, slow-moving Hurricane Irene struck cities and towns up and down the East Coast over the weekend, killing at least 33 people and knocking out power to millions of homes and businesses. Officials said many more people could have been injured if not for the extremely accurate forecasts of Irene’s trajectory that were provided by forecasters at the National Hurricane Center.

Irene made landfall Saturday morning at Cape Lookout, N.C. It hit where forecasters had predicted and then began following the path they had warned of for days. But the storm was less powerful than forecasters had predicted, leading some people to complain that the warnings had been overblown and that the massive evacuations–all told, about 2.5 million people up and down the East Coast were instructed to seek safer accommodations—had been excessive.

By Sunday morning, Irene had sustained winds of 75 mph, down from 100 mph on Friday. But despite the drop in force, the storm still measured hundreds of miles across and managed to wreak tremendous damage. Tornadoes were reported in Maryland and Delaware, and tornado warnings were issued elsewhere, including in New York and Philadelphia. In northern New England and upstate New York, rivers and creeks turned into torrents churning with tree limbs and parts of buildings. On Tuesday, entire towns in Vermont and New York remained cut off by flooding. An estimated five million Americans living on the East Coast were still without power on Tuesday morning.

In view of the severity of the hurricane and the damage to major arteries and transportation systems, MM&P Atlantic Ports Vice President Steve Werse and union officials decided to close the MM&P halls in Boston and New York/New Jersey on Monday. Werse advises those planning to go to the Boston or New York/New Jersey halls on Tuesday to check to make sure that their chosen method of transportation is viable, given all the disruptions. At MM&P headquarters in Linthicum Heights, five trees were uprooted or destroyed and another four are so heavily damaged that they will have to be taken down.

The National Weather Service has issued a series of flood warnings for rivers in New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, New York and Virginia. It also issued warnings for the Missouri River in Iowa, Nebraska and South Dakota. Authorities warned of possibly disastrous flooding in the days ahead, with Vermont’s governor saying his state was facing “a full-blown flooding catastrophe.”


MM&P MEMBERS AT THE CHICAGO FIRE DEPARTMENT ARE IN THE NEWS

MM&P members employed by the Chicago Fire Department have taken delivery of a new fireboat. The vessel, the CHRISTOPHER WHEATLEY, was designed and built to operate year-round in Lake Michigan, the Chicago River and surrounding harbors.

Four MM&P members operate the fireboat. James Foley, Ed Popelas, Bill Schmidt and Don Thayer are all captains and marine pilots. “It’s a 24/7 job,” says Schmidt.

The new fireboat was named for Firefighter Christopher Wheatley, who lost his life while on active duty in 2010. It will be used like its predecessor, the VICTOR L. SCHLAEGER, to respond to firefighting, rescue, hazmat decontamination, dive support operation or other waterway-related emergencies in the Chicago area. “We have 600 life vests on board,” Schmidt says, “in case we have to respond to a situation involving a big boat or a plane on fire.” The fireboat can shoot lake water onto a fire at a rate of 15,000 gallons a minute. In addition, because there are no Coast Guard cutters in Chicago, “the WHEATLEY is really going to break some good ice,” Schmidt says.

“Officially we’re in charge when we leave the dock, because the WHEATLEY is technically a firehouse,” says Schmidt. When the boat is docked, a lieutenant with the Chicago Fire Department is technically in command.

The Fire Department group works in tandem with a Chicago Water Department boat that is also an icebreaker. That vessel is manned by MM&P members Tom Courteney and Ed Popelas Jr.

The new fireboat is Marine Link magazine’s July “Boat of the Month.” Professional Mariner magazine is also working on an article on the CHRISTOPHER WHEATLEY and its crew.


USNS RICHARD E. BYRD FIRST NAVY SHIP TO VISIT VIETNAM PORT IN 38 YEARS

Military Sealift Command dry cargo/ammunition ship USNS RICHARD E. BYRD, with MM&P licensed deck officers at the helm, last week became the first U.S. Navy ship to visit the Vietnam port of Cam Ranh in almost four decades. The ship spent seven days at Cam Ranh Shipyard undergoing routine maintenance and repairs. Cam Ranh Bay is 180 miles north of Ho Chi Minh City, formerly called Saigon. From 1965 to 1973, during the Vietnam War, Cam Ranh was one of the largest in-country U.S. military facilities.
 
To save money and reduce the amount of time its ships are off-mission, the Navy uses commercial shipyards throughout the regions in which its vessels are deployed. Rescue and salvage ship USNS SAFEGUARD completed repairs at Saigon Shipmarin Shipyard near Ho Chi Minh City in September 2009. The U.S. normalized diplomatic relations with Vietnam in 1995. 


APPEALS COURT UPHOLDS DISMISSAL OF SECURITIES FRAUD SUIT AGAINST HORIZON LINES

In a split decision, a federal appeals court in Philadelphia has upheld a lower court’s dismissal of a class-action securities fraud suit against Horizon Lines. The recent ruling relates to legal action by several pension funds in the context of the allegations of price fixing in the Puerto Rico trade lanes that emerged in 2008. The defendants included the three managers of Horizon’s Puerto Rico business and five former senior executives. The courts found the company was not liable in the case, in part because it ruled that the plaintiffs had not proven that they had acted on the basis of misleading information supplied by company employees.


PIRATES ATTACK TWO TANKERS IN PORT OF SALALAH

A Marshall-Islands flagged oil and chemical tanker anchored off the port of Salalah, Oman, was hijacked by pirates on Aug. 20. A spokesman for the company that owns the vessel, the MV FAIRCHEM BOGEY, said that none of the 21 crewmembers was harmed in the attack. The vessel is now anchored off the coast of Somalia and the owners report that negotiations with the pirates began last weekend. The authorities reported that officers of the Omani Coast Guard approached the ship shortly after it was boarded but decided against taking action when the hijackers threatened to harm the crew. On Aug. 21, pirates again struck a chemical oil tanker in the Omani port. This time, however, the vessel was underway and took evasive action. After firing several shots and attempting to board the ship, the pirates gave up and fled.


COME TO THE LOS ANGELES LABOR DAY MARCH ON SEPT. 5!

All MM&P members, applicants and their families in the Los Angeles/Long Beach area are encouraged to participate in this year’s Labor Day March. Thousands of union members and their families attend the march every year to demonstrate their support for America’s working families and our country’s labor unions. There will be a rally in Banning Park after the march. If you want to participate, come to the LA/LB union hall between 0800 and 0830. We will walk to the staging area at 0900. Wear your MM&P shirt and show your solidarity. Join us as we march in Los Angeles Sept. 5 in honor of Labor Day!


SOCP STCW95 WORKING GROUP MEETING SEPT. 6 AT MITAGS

The Ship Operations Cooperative Program (SOCP) will host an STCW95 Working Group Meeting at the Maritime Institute of Technology and Graduate Studies (MITAGS) on Tuesday, Sept. 6, from 0900 to 1700. The group will discuss and develop comments on the recently released Supplementary Notice of Proposed Rule Making (SNPR) on the Implementation of the Amendments to the International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers, 1978, and Changes to Domestic Endorsements (SNPR Docket # USCG-2004-17914).  The meeting is open to the public. Please note that the meeting is scheduled to take place on the day prior to the Coast Guard public meeting in Washington, D.C., on Sept. 7.

There is no charge to attend the SOCP meeting but to ensure adequate seating, all participants must register on the SOCP web site under Upcoming Events or send an e-mail to Diane Ford, dford@mitags.org indicating the number of attendees. The MITAGS campus hotel will provide shuttle service to/from the BWI Amtrak Station for attendees who want to stay over for the public meeting in Washington. Attendees who require sleeping rooms may stay at the campus hotel. The price is $114/night plus tax, including breakfast. To make a reservation, go to www.ccmit.org, select reservations, select “group” as the reservation type, enter: Group ID 17792 and enter password 1298.  You may also contact the hotel directly by calling 410-859-5700 or by sending an e-mail to reservations@ccmit.org.

SOCP is an industry-government partnership formed in 1993 to share resources in the development and evaluation of technologies to advance shipboard safety, regulations, environment, training, reliability and productivity to improve the competitiveness of the U.S. maritime industry.


FIRST MERPAC MEETING OF 2011 SCHEDULED FOR OCT. 6-7

The first MERPAC meeting of 2011 will be held at Coast Guard Headquarters in Washington, D.C., on Oct. 6-7. For more information, please contact Mark C. Gould: mark.c.gould@uscg.mil or (202) 372-1409.


MITAGS HOSTS MARITIME EXECUTIVE FORUM ON JONES ACT AND JOB CREATION OCT. 12-13

The Jones Act has the potential to generate hundreds of thousands of new jobs and should be a central focus of the campaign to jumpstart the nation’s economy. This is the tenet of a national forum sponsored by Maritime Executive, the publishing company that produces Maritime Executive magazine and MarEx newsletter. The company will hold a national forum on the Jones Act at MITAGS Oct. 12-13.

“Today, U.S. vessel operators, shipbuilders, training institutions and port authorities have been overlooked as vital assets in the U.S. economic recovery plan,” the company said in an official release. “With your support, we aim to change that perspective in Congress and, most importantly, among the American people through a media campaign titled ‘Strong Ships for America’ and a series of strategic Jones Act conferences. The Oct. 12-13 conference at MITAGS is “the beginning of a national campaign to jumpstart the American economy, a campaign that will continue throughout 2012 and right up to Election Day in November.” To register, go to: http://www.maritime-executive.com/registration.php.


SCHEDULE FOR 2011 OFFSHORE DIVISION ORIENTATION 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): Oct. 13-14 in Los Angeles/Long Beach; Oct. 21-22 at MM&P headquarters in Linthicum Heights; 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.


PORT OF LOS ANGELES ANNOUNCES DRAMATIC REDUCTION IN EMISSIONS

A spokeswoman for the Port of Los Angeles says the port’s “Clean Air Action Plan” succeeded in reducing pollution by more than 70 percent in 2010, even as cargo volume rose by 5 percent. With 2005 numbers as a baseline, sulfur oxide emissions per 10,000 TEUs have dropped 76 percent and diesel particulate matter emissions dropped 71 percent. Nitrogen oxide emissions fell 52 percent, carbon monoxide dropped 48 percent and hydrocarbon emissions decreased 45 percent. “This is the second straight year we have achieved dramatic reductions in every emissions category,” said Geraldine Knatz, executive director of the Port of Los Angeles, in an official release to the press. She cited the port’s vessel speed reduction program and clean-truck plan as key factors in the results achieved.  


CRUISE SHIP PASSENGER FACES PRISON OVER DRUNKEN ANCHOR INCIDENT

A middle-aged California man faces 20 years in prison and a quarter-million dollar fine for dropping a Holland America cruise ship’s anchor. The man, Rick Elhert, has pleaded guilty but says he should not be facing such a long sentence because he was too drunk to know better. The incident, which occurred a year ago when the MS RYNDAM was traveling from Mexico to Tampa, was caught on security camera.


MITAGS ACADEMIC NOTES

Try our on-line interactive calendar to register for class: MITAGS:PMI :: Courses

For class availability or info on MITAGS courses and programs, contact Kelly Michielli, Admissions Coordinator, toll-free at 866-656-5568 or Email: admissions@mitags.org.

AB – Able Bodied Seaman: 10/17

ARPA � Automated Radar Plotting Aids: 9/27
AZIPOD (2-DAY) for Pilots: 10/13

BRM � Bridge Resource Management: 9/26, 11/14
BRMP � Bridge Resource Management for Pilots: 11/28
BST – Basic Safety Training: 10/10

[CMM – Chief Mate and Master Courses]
CMM-ADVWX � Advanced Meteorology: 9/12, 11/14
CMM-ADVNAV � Advanced Navigation (=ECDIS & VPEN): 10/31
CMM-ADVSTB � Advanced Stability: 10/3
CMM-CHS � Advanced Cargo Operations (2 weeks): 10/10
CMM-ECDIS � Electronic Chart Display and Information Systems: 11/17, 12/5
CMM-MPP � Marine Propulsion Plants: 10/24
CMM-SHMGT – Ship Management (2 weeks): 9/19, 12/5
CMM-SHS-ADV-I � Advanced Shiphandling (week 1): 9/12, 9/26, 10/24, 11/7, 11/28
CMM-SHS-ADV-I I � Advanced Shiphandling (week 2): 9/19, 10/3, 10/31, 11/14, 12/5
CMM-VPEN � Voyage Planning and Electronic Navigation: 10/31
CMM-WKP � Advanced Watchkeeping: 11/28

CONT PLNG � Contingency Planning: 11/10
CHS BAS � Basic Cargo Handing and Stowage: 10/31

ECDIS-ENAV (2 DAY) for Pilots: 10/17
EP � Emergency Procedures: 10/19
ENAV � Electronic Navigation: 9/12
ENVIRO-Regs Permit � Environmental Regulations Permit: 11/8

FF-BADV � Combined Basic and Advanced Fire Fighting: 10/10
FSM � Fatigue, Sleep and Medications for Pilots: 10/19

HAZ � Hazardous Materials (5 day): 11/28

LAP � License Advancement Program for Chief Mate & Master: 10/3
LAP-ORG 3rd � License Advancement Program for Original 3/Mate: 12/5
LEG – Legal Aspects of Pilotage: 9/12, 10/17, 11/28

MCL – Management, Communications and Leadership: 9/12
MEDIA-RSP � Media Response Workshop: 11/11
MED-PIC – Medical Person In Charge: 10/24
MED-PIC -R� Medical Person In Charge Refresher: 9/12, 11/14
MED-PRO � Medical Care Provider: 10/24
MED-DOT-DA – Dept. of Transportation Drug & Alcohol Testing: 10/29

MSC-CBRD1 � Basic Chemical, Biological, Radiological Defense: 10/7
MSC-DC � Damage Control: 10/3
MSC -SMA � Military Sealift Command Small Arms Qualification: 10/3, 11/14

ROR-1 – Radar Observer Renewal Evening Classes: 9/14, 10/5, 10/19, 11/2, 11/16, 12/7, 12/14
ROP-5 � Radar Observer Original and Renewal: 11/7

SAR � Search & Rescue: 10/17
SEC-VCF � Security Officer, Vessel, Company & Facility: 11/7
SHS-BAS � Basic Shiphandling: 8/29, 10/10, 12/12
SHS-ESH-BRMP3 � Emergency Shiphandling and Bridge Resource Management for Pilots: 10/10
SHS-EMR5 � Emergency Shiphandling: 10/17

C-NAV � Celestial Navigation: 11/7

WX BAS � Basic Meteorology: 9/19, 10/3

…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

September 2011

6-16    Celestial Navigation
12-23  GMDSS
19-23  Medical Care Provider
26-30 Med PIC Refresher
26-30 ECDIS
26-30 Basic Shiphandling

October 2011

3-7      Basic Construction and Stability
3-14    GMDSS
10-14  ECDIS
11th      Flashing Light
12-13   Basic Environmental Awareness w/ Vessel General Permit
17th      Radar Renewal
17-21   Management, Communication, and Leadership
17-21   Basic Shiphandling
18-20  Security – Vessel, Company, and Facility
24-28 Basic Cargo Handling and Stowage


MM&P MARKET WATCH AS OF 8-26-11

D O W N A S D A Q S & P 500
11,284.54 2,479.85 1,176.80
Fund Name & Trading Symbol
 Closing
Price
 Vanguard Asset Allocation Fund (VAARX)
51.48
 Vanguard 500 Index Fund (VFINX)
108.73
 Vanguard Extended Market Index Fund (VEXMX)
37.48
 Vanguard International Growth Fund (VWIGX)
17.50
 Vanguard Morgan Growth Fund (VMRGX)
16.82
 Vanguard Windsor II Fund (VWNFX)
23.95
 Vanguard GNMA Fund (VFIIX)
11.13
 Vanguard Growth Index Fund (VIGRX)
30.11
 Vanguard High Yield Corporate (VWEHX)
5.53
 Vanguard LifeStrategy Conservative Growth (VSCGX)
16.03
 Vanguard LifeStrategy Growth Fund (VASGX)
20.72
 Vanguard LifeStrategy Income Fund (VASIX)
14.09
 Vanguard LifeStrategy Moderate Growth (VSMGX)
18.86
 Vanguard Target Retirement 2005 (VTOVX)
12.01
 Vanguard Target Retirement 2015 (VTXVX)
12.24
 Vanguard Target Retirement 2025 (VTTVX)
12.16
 Vanguard Target Retirement 2035 (VTTHX)
12.36
 Vanguard Target Retirement 2045 (VTIVX)
12.71
 Vanguard Total Bond Index (VBMFX)
10.96
 Vanguard Total Stock Market Index Fund (VTSMX)
29.44
 Chase Growth Fund (CHASX)
16.61
 Fidelity Asset Manager (FASMX)
14.92
 Fidelity Growth and Income (FGRIX)
17.00
 Fidelity Intermediate bond Fund (FTHRX)
10.89
 Fidelity Magellan Fund (FMAGX)
63.58
 Fidelity Value Fund (FDVLX)
60.70
 Fidelity Equity-Income II Fund (FEQTX)
16.19
 Fidelity Blue Chip Growth Fund (FBGRX)
43.27
 Fidelity Diversified International Fund (FDIVX)
27.09
 Fidelity Dividend Growth Fund (FDGFX)
25.32
 Fidelity Freedom Income (FFFAX)
11.30
 Fidelity Freedom 2000 (FFFBX)
12.02
 Fidelity Freedom 2010 (FFFCX)
13.33
 Fidelity Freedom 2020 (FFFDX)
13.37
 Fidelity Freedom 2030 (FFFEX)
13.11
 Fidelity Freedom 2040 (FFFFX)
7.51
 Fidelity Freedom 2050 (FFFHX)
8.72
 Fidelity Total Bond Fund (FTBFX)
11.03
 Spartan Extended market Index Fund (FSEMX)
34.19
 Spartan US Equity Index Fund (FUSEX)
41.77
 Domini Social Equity Fund (DSEFX)
28.60



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.