Security

A positive approach to safety at sea

MARITIME conventions can take many years to implement. Indeed, their gestation periods often outlive their progenitors. Yet, within the space of thirty days this year, two of the most important conventions ever adopted by the International Maritime Organisation are set to kick in. On July 1, the first stage of the ISM code became mandatory. On August 1, maritime...

Safe port and safe berth

THE New York Produce Exchange (NYPE) charter party (as revised in 1946) is a typical time charter. It imposes an obligation on the charterer to ensure that the vessel is employed "between safe port and/or ports". A similar duty is imposed in a voyage charter party. But, in many voyage charter parties, load and disports are identified by name, which gives rise to different...

Legal safety of Nigeria's ports

IN the recent past, ships sailing into Nigerian waters have faced such a high risk of arbitrary, wrongful and malicious detention that many consider the ports to be outright legally "unsafe". Certainly it is well-known that a great number of claims filed in the courts by itinerant cargo claimants are not calculated to resolve genuine disputes, but to blackmail owners into...

IMO calls for unity on bulk carrier safety

IMO calls for unity on bulk carrier safety IMO secretary-general Bill O'Neil has highlighted the need for widespread and concerted efforts to improve bulk carrier safety. O'Neil says, "Bulk carrier safety has been a priority on our agenda for over ten years now, and the work has not been finalised. I would therefore encourage, once again, all parties concerned to work in...

Passenger protection

THE cruise and ferry industry is big business. And it's getting bigger. Today, some of the world's largest cruiseships can carry more than 3,500 passengers alone. It's not surprising then that incidents such as the Herald of Free Enterprise and the Estonia have put passenger safety at sea firmly in the limelight. Liability for the sea carriage of passengers is currently...

A question of security

A question of security AMONG the regular events in the maritime conference calendar is the Ship Arrest Seminar held in London each December. This year is no exception. The 9th annual seminar takes place on December 11-12 and promises to be the definitive source of advice and information on how to obtain security in different jurisdictions around the world. While it will never...

A tale of two circuits

IMAGINE leaving a $500,000 down-payment on a new home with your local bank, only to learn the next day that a bank employee has stolen the money. Then imagine that the bank claims that it only owes you $100 under the small print of a deposit contract that you signed. Few would expect a court to enforce such an outrageous agreement but, every day in the US, courts enforce...

Who is responsible for what?

EVER since the terrorist attacks on the US on September 11, 2001, the shipping industry has been challenged to come up with new ways to tighten the security of the world’s maritime transportation system. The US has been at the forefront of this effort with initiatives for ship, port facility and cargo security. While the major emphasis has been on the physical security of hard...

Headline hostage

MARITIME security, which has been busy clocking up column inches in the trade press, has finally caught the eye of the wider public media too. Two articles in a recent edition of a UK broadsheet newspaper made interesting reading, not because they demonstrated any in-depth understanding of maritime security issues and the terrorist threat to global shipping, but because the...