• 2020 May 31 14:48

    MM&P seeks help from Congress in battle to repatriate offshore crews

    The International Organization of Masters, Mates & Pilots (MM&P) says that the crews of five US-flag containerships are among the thousands of mariners who are essentially being held hostage aboard their vessels because of the breakdown in the crew change process caused by Covid-19. The crews of the five ships–operating in the Mediterranean, the Arabian Sea and the Persian Gulf, and all participants in the Maritime Security Program–have been working since December 2019 without reliefs.

    The vessels run a 24/7 operation delivering goods that help supply US bases overseas as well as commercial and humanitarian cargo around the world.

    MM&P and the other American maritime unions have sought to repatriate their members via major ports–including US naval bases in Turkey, Cyprus, Malta, Israel, Egypt, Kuwait, Dubai and Oman—but without success.

    “These professional mariners are true frontline workers and now is the time to lend a hand to get them home,” MM&P Atlantic Ports Vice President Tom Larkin told the Senate Foreign Relations Committee in a May 21 letter.

    “Apart from humanitarian concerns, the global supply chain is at risk,” MM&P President Don Marcus wrote leaders of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee.

    He said the situation is particularly difficult to comprehend because US-citizen merchant seamen are America’s fourth arm of defense.

    “They are supplying our troops overseas and delivering government cargoes of all sorts, including essential foreign aid to many of the same countries that are preventing their repatriation,” he wrote.

    “At the most pragmatic level, how can it be that to date there has been no effective US government intervention to prevent a critical break in the logistical supply chain of our military?”

    Marcus has transmitted to Congress a letter drafted by the International Federation of Shipmasters’ Associations, of which MM&P is a member, outlining the magnitude of the global crisis and calling on governments to immediately implement the IMO’s crew change protocols.

    “Isolation and excessive lengths of service aboard ship have created grave dangers of fatigue and psychological stress, increasing the likelihood of marine accidents, creating mental health risks, including deep depression and, in extreme cases, suicide,” Marcus wrote.

    “Seafarers are being abandoned.”

    “We seek your assistance with the State Department and/or the Department of Defense to ensure that US mariners can be relieved in Middle Eastern ports and, for the greater global crisis, we seek the assistance of the US government to see that foreign seafarers can be similarly relieved and repatriated from US. ports,” Marcus wrote leaders of the House Committee.

    About MM&P
    The members of the International Organization of Masters, Mates & Pilots (MM&P) include the world’s best-qualified and most highly trained professional mariners. MM&P represents: licensed deck officers on U.S.-flag commercial vessels sailing offshore, on the inland waterways and on civilian-crewed ships in the government fleet; mariners who work on tug, ferry and harbor tour vessels in New York Harbor and throughout the Northeast; licensed and unlicensed mariners who work on dredges; state pilots; marine engineers; unlicensed seafarers; and maritime industry shore side clerical and service workers. The union is a dynamic advocate for its 5,500 members and a voice in Washington, D.C., for the domestic maritime industry and America’s Merchant Marine.


2020 July 14

18:11 Wärtsilä contracted to deliver a scope of integrated solutions for CDWE's MIV
17:57 More States need to act on crew changes, says IMO Secretary-General
17:33 Throughput of Russian seaports in 6M’2020 climbed by 0.1% (detalization)
17:11 Alewijnse completes electrical installation TSHD Anchorage
16:46 Vladimir Putin signs the package of federal laws on the system of privileges in the Arctic
16:21 Mark Sickles named Interim CEO & Executive Director of DCA
15:55 Reconstruction of hydraulic facility No 9 of Tushinsky District’s HES obtains state expert approval
15:32 Green Yard Group takes over Kleven Verft business
15:04 Engineering and geological survey began for construction of Port Dalny terminal in Khabarovsk Territory
14:39 LISCR hires former USCG LNG expert to boost its global team
14:20 Young Russian sturgeon released to Volga as compensatory measure for dredging on Volga Caspian Canal
13:57 Rosmorport releases young keta salmon as compensatory measure for dredging in Shakhtersk
13:36 Straatman BV built solar-powered mooring systems for Port of Hamburg
13:12 ABB to power the world’s largest diamond recovery vessel for De Beers
12:48 Bunker prices are stable at the Far East ports of Russia (graph)
12:23 COMSAT bolsters Inmarsat network with increased C-band and L-band capabilities
11:55 IMO's informal discussions focus on cutting shipping’s carbon intensity
11:31 G3 Terminal Vancouver opens on Canada’s West Coast and transforms Canada’s grain supply chain
11:13 Further progress towards greener and safer ship recycling in Bangladesh reported at SENSREC meeting
10:50 Polish Ministry of Climate signs letter of intent on cooperation in the development of offshore wind energy
10:32 USCG investigates uninspected passenger vessel allision
10:07 Gdynia to be the installation port of Polish wind farms on the Baltic Sea
09:42 More information needed on the impacts of emissions trading in maritime transport
09:26 Oil prices decrease amid demand concerns
09:21 MABUX: Bunker market this morning, July 14
09:08 Baltic Dry Index as of July 13

2020 July 13

18:24 Canada joins Global Ocean Alliance
18:00 Interim report and independent audit of KS1437 Multipass Port project approved by related authority
16:59 Port of Ventspils (Latvia) handled 6.8 million tonnes of cargo in 6M’2020
15:32 Oboronlogistics ensures Northern delivery
15:04 Ørsted and Van Oord have successfully installed all array cables of the Borssele I & II offshore wind farm
14:21 Dublin Port throughput declines by 10.9% in the six months to June
13:53 FSUE Rosmorport’s revenue in HI’2020 grew by 6% YoY
13:30 Average wholesale prices for М-100 HFO grew to RUB 10,425 in RF spot market
13:04 CMA CGM announces FAK rates from Asia to the Mediterranean
12:41 CMA CGM announces FAK rates from Asia to North Europe
12:19 Tallinks’s vessel Romantika to offer two direct sailings from Riga to Helsinki this July and August
12:18 ISO releases environmental report assurance standard
11:55 NOVATEK reports preliminary operating data for the second quarter and first half 2020
11:32 KN increases the volume of biofuel handling
11:02 XELLZ acquires additional 100.000sqm to develop a Free Zone at Rosslare Europort
10:14 Gibdock completes an extensive two-vessel drydocking and maintenance project for returning customer Shearwater GeoServices
10:13 Port of Helsinki throughput in 6M’2019 fell by 9.2% to 6.6 million tonnes
09:58 The Fjords takes delivery of second all-electric passenger ship
09:49 Oil prices continue going down
09:32 RF Government to allocate RUB 320 million as support of shipping companies
09:10 Baltic Dry Index as of July 10
09:05 MABUX: Bunker market this morning, July 13

2020 July 12

16:21 Carnival Corp announces change in leadership team
15:38 UMS Skeldar gets contract to supply mine countermeasures drones system
15:23 Samson introduces the latest in mooring line innovation
14:19 Coast Guard halts 2 illegal charters near Star Island
13:41 Carnival Corporation's AIDA Cruises to restart sailing vacations in August
13:18 New OCIMF Committee structure
12:51 American P&I Club and ABS Consulting join forces to drive cyber awareness for maritime insurance
11:49 Royal Caribbean Group acquires remaining interest in Silversea

2020 July 11

15:28 Cox Powertrain celebrates as first 300hp diesel outboards roll off the production line ready for delivery
14:51 WCI names Tracy R. Zea as President & CEO
13:45 NOS expands its fleet with two additional M-Class vessels
11:37 Huisman to deliver 250mt Knuckle Boom Crane and 500mt Towing Winch for Nanhai Rescue Bureau