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Wheelhouse Weekly – September 08, 2000

September 8th 2000


MASTER AND MMP MEMBERS ABOARD AND INTERESTED PERSONS THE MASTERS, MATES AND PILOTS’ — WHEELHOUSE WEEKLY

Bridging the Information Gap With E-News You Can Use

VOLUME 4. . . . . NUMBER 36. . . September 8, 2000

STORIES COVERED



MM&P TO JOIN IN DC PROTEST AGAINST FOC FLOATING SWEATSHOPS

The International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF) along with a multi-union contingent including the MM&P will escalate its global campaign against flag-of-convenience ship registries with a rally at the US Capitol set for Tues., Sept.19 at 1000 hrs. Elected officials, including House Minority Whip David Bonior, (D-MI), ITF officers from around the world, and representatives of US maritime labor unions will participate in the rally. AFL-CIO President John Sweeney is also scheduled to speak.

The rally will draw attention to the operation of unsafe flag-of-convenience (FOC) ships and to the human rights violations and unconscionable working and living conditions these vessels’ crews are subjected to on a daily basis. Many FOC vessels are likened to floating sweatshops.

Flag-of-convenience ships, also known as runaway-flag vessels, are registered in and flying the flag of a country different from its ownership. FOC registries typically are used to provide vessel owners cut-rate registration fees, low or no corporate taxes, and evasion of safety and environmental statutes.

FOC registries open the way for the worst ship owners to exploit those who work aboard their vessels by withholding pay, food and medical care, virtually holding them hostage.

All too often, the world’s commerce is carried on FOC cargo vessels that exist solely as a means to maximize corporate profits at the expense of basic human rights and the safety of life at sea. These loosely regulated registries are harbingers for safety and environmental disasters. A reckless indifference to safety aboard these floating sweatshops regularly spirals into disaster, with fires and groundings becoming much too frequent.

The FOC system acts as a protectorate of substandard shipping. It represents an incursion against the environment as well as human rights. The rally will call attention to these issues and will urge the US government, as well as world governmental agencies, to shun a system that gives precedence to corporate profits over the rights of seafarers.

For more details or info on transportation for members from MM&P HQ, contact Communications Director Karl Schwartz at 410-850-8700×27. The rally is part of a ‘Week of Action’ organized by the ITF on the US East and Gulf Coasts starting Sept.18.

MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly


NEW WIN IN UNEMPLOYMENT COMPENSATION FOR OFFSHORE MEMBER

On Aug.18, the North Carolina Employment Security Commission handed down a decision awarding unemployment compensation to offshore member Nick Angelozzi based upon his work for SeaLand. This reversed an earlier decision that had been rendered by an Appeals Referee finding that Brother Angelozzi was not eligible.

This latest decision is consistent with a previous decision rendered by the same commission in favor of another offshore member last December.

The decision has important ramifications for all nonpermanent LDOs sailing for either Maersk SeaLand and CSX Lines. Since both companies are apparently domiciled in North Carolina any nonpermanent LDOs sailing for Maersk SeaLand or CSX Lines are covered under the NC Unemployment Compensation Regulations from the time they register for work in any MM&P port office, regardless of the residence of the LDO and regardless of the port from which the LDO ships or registers.

Members interested in further info on this ruling should contact MM&P International Counsel John Singleton at MM&P HQ at: Phone: 410-850-8700×19; Fax: 410-850-0973; or Email: jsingleton@bridgedeck.org.

MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly


STRATEGIC SEALIFT COMMUNICATIONS COURSE OFFERED AT MITAGS

MITAGS will hold the its first Strategic Sealift Communications course beginning Sept.11. The course recognizes the need for specialized communications training of maritime industry personnel, US Government employees, and officers aboard ships supporting the Military Sealift Command and US National Defense operations.

The five day course curriculum includes detailed learning and equipment-specific training objectives to meet baseline knowledge, skills and communication abilities needed aboard merchant vessels utilizing commercial facilities to meet requirements of MSC and the Department of Defense.

A number of guest speakers from key organizations will contribute firsthand information to the program and provide unique insight to students during their presentations and follow-on question and answer sessions.

For registration info, contact Mike Wein at MITAGS at (443) 989-3238 or Email: mwein@mitags.org.

MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly


SEARCH FOR STOWAWAYS DIVERTS MM&P-CREWED SHIP TO ALASKA

The 860-foot containership MANOA, chartered by APL from Matson, both MM&P contracted companies, made national news this week when it diverted to Dutch Harbor, Alaska after the vessel’s master notified the USCG that crewmembers had heard faint knocking coming from inside a container which they suspected hid Chinese stowaways.

But after unloading nearly 40 containers to reach the suspected box that was located below deck, the USCG found nothing unusual. There were no humans in the container. Officials then removed and searched the containers that surrounded the one from which the ship’s crew reported hearing knocking.

The USCG, Immigration and Naturalization Service and officials of APL, had prepared for the worst as they unloaded the ship. The container suspected of holding the stowaways was opened by armed federal agents wearing hazardous materials suits while medical personnel stood by.

The ship’s voyage originated in China and it had made several Asian stops. The vessel was headed for Oakland, CA, but diverted to Dutch Harbor when the crew heard the knocking after a power outage silenced reefer units used to cool the containers. Crewmen drilled a hole in the side of the container to allow air in and passed food and water inside. They couldn’t open the door to gain entry because it was blocked by other containers.

An APL spokesman said all shipping companies have had trouble with stowaways. APL has had about six prior incidents in recent years in which Chinese smugglers have hidden human cargo aboard its container ships. The company has tight security procedures, he said, but the smugglers, who charge tens of thousands of dollars per passenger, find ways around them.

MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly


LYKES UPGRADES TRANS-ATLANTIC SERVICES

Lykes Lines announced that it will expand its trans-Atlantic Sprint services, effective Oct. 21. The carrier will increase the number of its weekly, fixed-day trans-Atlantic sailings by 16 to a total of 38, operating midweek and weekend sailings in five separate loops.

The North Atlantic Sprint, in two loops, will operate between Europe and the east coast of North America, calling at ports from NY-NJ down to Savannah. The three-loop Gulf Atlantic Sprint service will operate between Europe and ports in Mexico, the US Gulf and the southern US East Coast.

“This reorganization gives us improvements of up to 30% in transit times between some ports,” says Tony Bruno, the carrier’s commercial vice president. “For example, Charleston to Bremerhaven is cut from 12 to 7 days and Thamesport to New York is down from 11 to 7 days.”

Lykes, based in Tampa, Fla., said it is operating the new trans-Atlantic services as part of Americana Ships’ agreement with the Grand Alliance. Americana Ships is the management company under which Lykes operates.

The expansion will begin on Oct. 21. The five weekly sprint services are:

  • North Atlantic Sprint Loop 1, with the following rotation: Hamburg, Rotterdam, Antwerp, Southampton, NY-NJ, Norfolk, Charleston, NY-NY, Southampton, Le Havre, Rotterdam and Hamburg.
  • North Atlantic Sprint Loop 2, which calls Antwerp, Thamesport, Bremerhaven, Rotterdam, Le Havre, NY-NJ, Norfolk, the US West Coast, Savannah, Norfolk, NY-NJ and Antwerp.
  • Gulf Atlantic Sprint Loop 1, calling Antwerp, Thamesport, Bremerhaven, Charleston, Houston, New Orleans, Charleston, Norfolk and Antwerp.
  • Gulf Atlantic Sprint Loop 2, serving Antwerp, Thamesport, Bremerhaven, Le Havre, Houston, Veracruz, Altamira, Charleston and Antwerp.
  • Gulf Atlantic Sprint Loop 3, with a rotation of Southampton, Le Havre, Rotterdam, Hamburg, Charleston, Miami, Houston, Charleston, Hamburg, Rotterdam, Antwerp and Southampton.

MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly


MITAGS HAS THE FOLLOWING COURSE OPENINGS

  • 9/16 CBRD-1 DAY
  • 9/18-22: TPIC; COMP-NET
  • 9/20: CPR
  • 9/25-9/29: ROP
  • 9/26-27: EAPT
  • 9/30: ROR
  • 9/25 to 10/27: LAP
  • 10/2-6: BST
  • 10/2: ROR 1-DAY
  • 10/9-13: GMDSS-REF
  • 10/11: CPR
  • 10/14: CBRD-1
  • 10/16-20: ROP, COMP-APS
  • 10/17-18: EAPT
  • 10/28: CBRD-1
  • 10/30-11/03: MED-1ST; DCS; SHS-EMR
  • 11/1: HAZMAT-NIGHT
  • 11/13-17: BST; ROP; VPM; COMP-OPS

COMP-NET cancelled for 10/23-27

IMPORTANT NOTICE: Course changes are posted on the MITAGS website as soon as they are made and are also updated in the Wheelhouse Weekly. It is highly recommended to check with Mary Matlock, MITAGS Admissions, for the latest course info. She may be reached at: Voice: 410-859-5700 ext. 3246; Fax: 410-859-5181; Email: admissions@mitags.org.

MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly


MM&P MARKET WATCH AS OF 9-07

We have received requests from members at sea to include the Dow Jones Industrial Average and NASDAQ Composite Index closing numbers for the week. Since the Wheelhouse Weekly is usually distributed before the markets close on Friday, the numbers cited will be from Thursday’s close unless otherwise specified.

 DOW

 11,259.87

+44.77 for the week

 NASDAQ

 4,098.35

-108.00 for the week

We have also received requests to list the following six funds that are representative of many members’ IRAP holdings in Vanguard and Chase Mutual Funds. In future weeks, the change up or down for the week will also be indicated for the stock averages quoted above and the mutual funds listed below:

 Vanguard 500 Index Fund

 138.95

 -1.38 for the week

 Vanguard Extended Market Index Fund

 39.01

 -0.11 for the week

 Vanguard International Growth Fund

 21.99

 -0.24 for the week

 Vanguard Morgan Growth Fund

 24.20

 -0.37 for the week

 Vanguard Windsor II Fund

 27.06

 +0.85 for the week

 Chase Growth Fund

 17.98

  -0.08 for the week

MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly


The MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly is being produced under MM&P election guidelines which have been previously published and may be found in their entirety on the MM&P website. The Wheelhouse Weekly is the official electronic newsletter of the International Organization of Masters, Mates, and Pilots, ILA, AFL-CIO, 700 Maritime Blvd., Linthicum Heights, MD 21090-1941. Phone: 410-850-8700; Fax: 410-850-0973; Email: iommp@bridgedeck.org. For further info contact John Peige at jpeige@bridgedeck.org. The Wheelhouse Weekly is sent via Email to MM&P-contracted vessels at sea, broadcast worldwide via FEC marine telex and is posted on our web page under “News” at: http://www.bridgedeck.org.

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