• 2018 March 12 17:34

    Finnish Transport Agency’s Vessel Traffic Services prevented 12 groundings last year

    The Finnish merchant shipping lanes are narrow, busy and full of shoals. Despite the many dangerous spots, serious accidents occur infrequently. This is thanks to the Finnish Transport Agency’s Vessel Traffic Services, which prevented 12 groundings last year.

    In merchant shipping, it is unusual that vessels deviate from the fairway area, says the Finnish Transport Agency. For example, last year, VTS operators had to intervene in only 19 such cases. In most of these cases, a deviation would probably have led to the vessel running aground, had the vessel not been advised to change its course.

    “Dangerous situations may occur, for example, when the pilot has left the vessel and the vessel continues on its own. In one case, a vessel was heading towards a shoal while the captain thought that he was steering the opposite course. The reason for this turned out to be a technical fault in the navigation equipment”, says Esa Hurskainen, Deputy Head of the Gulf of Finland Vessel Traffic Centre.

    Hawk’s eyes are required in Vessel Traffic Services, since any serious grounding would not only jeopardise the vessel crew, but nature as well.

    “All freight vessels carry plenty of fuel, not to mention tankers. The grounding of a tanker and the consequent oil spills would be fatal for the Baltic Sea. Dangerous incidents occur each year”, says Hurskainen.

    In Finland, the Finnish Transport Agency is responsible for the three VTS centres, situated in Helsinki, Turku and Lappeenranta. Although accident prevention is one of the most important tasks of the VTS centres, the centres have many other duties as well.

    “Our work mainly consists of ensuring smoother and more efficient vessel traffic by maintaining a situational picture. We monitor, for example, that vessels follow their routes and supervise that vessels comply with the international regulations”, says Hurskainen.

    Not everyone complies with the rules. In such cases, the VTS centres register the offences for continued handling. The most common offences are breach of traffic rules in traffic separation schemes and give-way rules of vessels.

    “This means sort of the same thing as when a speedster with an obligation to give way does not yield for a car approaching from the right. In vessel traffic, there are always certain rules that have to be complied with to ensure smooth and safe vessel traffic”, says Hurskainen.

    Last year, the VTS centres registered 173 offences and 230 deviations. The deviations normally include different engine malfunctions and other technical faults. In 2017, most offences were made by vessels sailing under the Dutch, Antigua and Barbudan, and Panamanian flags.

    The Finnish Transport Agency is responsible for Vessel Traffic Services in Finland. The purpose of the services is to improve the safety and efficiency of navigation, prevent marine accidents and protect the marine environment from possible adverse effects of maritime traffic. The three VTS centres are situated in Helsinki, Turku and Lappeenranta.




2018 December 19

18:21 MHI Vestas and ESVAGT enter into another SOV contract
17:35 Alliance of ENGIE, EDPR, Sumitomo Corp. to develop offshore wind projects in Yeu-Noirmoutier and Dieppe-Le Tréport
17:33 Austal USA secures two LCS contract for U.S. Navy
17:25 Eni announces Merakes East Gas discovery in the Indonesian offshore
17:18 ScanOcean to resell Neste’s low-sulfur bunker fuel on the East Coast of Sweden
17:06 Port of Rotterdam Authority makes greener sea-going shipping more accessible
16:48 Dredging on IWW of Russia in 2018 fell by 14.6% Y-o-Y to 22.9 million cbm
16:26 NOVATEK signed Memorandum on Strategic Cooperation with SACE
16:03 Non-containerised cargo shows steady increase at Jebel Ali Port
15:42 V.F. Tanker merges into Volga Shipping Company
15:20 Cargo traffic via IWW of Russia forecasted to fall by 3% to 115 million tonnes in 2019
15:16 ESVAGT and Wind Power LAB developed new service concept improving wind turbine inspections
15:03 Royal Caribbean returns to Port of New Orleans
14:33 Maersk announces new rotation on Asia-Europe network
14:08 Concordia Maritime sells positions in chartered-in Suezmax vessels
13:33 SFL enters into lease financing agreement for 3 x 10,600-teu boxships and delivery of Front Falcon
12:58 Maersk joins the Ship Recycling Transparency Initiative
12:55 7 icebreaker escort operations performed in eastern part of Gulf of Finland during 24 hours on December 18-19
12:23 Damen signs with Gerd Stensen for Stan Tug 1606
12:21 Havyard announces its eight windfarm service vessel
11:56 Simulation exercises to improve port security held in Panama
11:31 Port of Newcastle continues modernization of its bulk terminal
11:09 RF Government gives instructions to address the issue on construction of four gas-powered icebreakers
10:50 Regional workshop to address barriers for effective implementation of MARPOL Annex VI held at REMPEC
10:32 Brent Crude futures price down up 0.20% to $56.37, Light Sweet Crude – up 0.04% to $46.64
10:14 THE Alliance unveils enhanced service network for 2019
09:57 Finnish Transport Safety Agency set to contribute to automation of maritime navigation
09:35 FESCO BoD approved new composition of Executive Board
09:16 Baltic Dry Index is down to 1,395 points

2018 December 18

18:21 Uniper SE and MOL enter into agreement on FSRU project in Germany, and one additional LNG transportation agreement
18:00 Throughput of Chinese ports grew by 4.3% to 8.47 billion tonnes in 11M’18
17:46 Rolls-Royce to deliver advanced ship technology to two more expedition cruise vessels for Mystic Cruises
17:43 Aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth enters LR class
17:27 SOL adds Finnish port of Pietarsaari/Jakobstad to the Zeebrugge route network
17:04 Finnpilot Pilotage BoD decided for no increase in the pilotage fees for 2019
16:42 GTT bags yet another tank design order for LNGC duo
16:38 PRA starts construction of new plastics recycling facility at the Port of Amsterdam
16:25 Arctia and Meritaito join forces to expand their range of services
16:09 Crowley integrates DFTS management into government solutions group to unify supply chain services
15:42 KN enhances its relations with American LNG giants
15:18 BW Group Limited purchased 137,000 shares
14:53 Icebreakers of FSUE Rosmorport assisted 680 ships in navigation season 2018-2019
14:28 Shell Oman and Port of Duqm ink agreement to develop fuel bunkering facilities
14:11 Golar LNG receives LNTP for an FLNG vessel for Greater Tortue / Ahmeyim Project P1, West Africa
13:47 WEG and Praxis sign MoU to support Damen Saab bid for the Brazilian Navy
13:41 Eni gets approval of the investment plan for Merakes Development Project in Indonesia
13:22 Sovcomflot closes USD 264 million long-term revolving credit facility
12:58 Bunker prices are flat at the Far East ports of Russia (graph)
12:40 Antwerp, Belgium will host the 3rd European Environmental Ports Conference on 12-13 June 2019
12:19 Keppel receives limited notice to proceed for GIMI FLNG
11:57 3 icebreaker escort operations performed in eastern part of Gulf of Finland during 24 hours on December 17-18
11:35 Terna’s MONITA HVDC Project: Nexans reaches key milestone with successful completion of submarine power cable
11:10 Container throughput of port Hong Kong (China) down 5.4% to 17.96 million TEUs in Jan-Nov’18
10:46 Bunker sales at the port of Singapore in 11M’18 down 1.8% Y-o-Y to 45.49 million tonnes
10:23 Maersk announces rate increase for Far East to North Europe trade
10:05 Brent Crude futures price down 1.53% to $58.72, Light Sweet Crude – down 1.61% to $49.39
09:47 Austal export opportunity supported by Australian Government financing
09:31 Rosatom drafted Rules for providing navigational and hydrographic support in NSR waters
09:14 Baltic Dry Index is up to 1,406 points

2018 December 17

18:23 Sembcorp Marine retains its position as Asia’s top cruise ship repair and upgrade solutions provider with newbuilds projects delivered in 2018