August 2016

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Congress inches closer to agreement to boost Army Corps funding

Congress inches closer to agreement to boost Army Corps funding

It was a case of almost there, but not quite. A bipartisan effort in Congress to significantly increase funding for Army Corps of Engineers dredging and construction in fiscal year 2017 was rejected at the last moment in the House.

MarAd, operators say nation could face shortage of mariners

Federal agencies and vessel operators are voicing worries over a looming shortage of graduate mariners in the U.S. merchant marine.

Vessel operators fear new offshore drilling rules will add to Gulf woes

Vessel operators fear new offshore drilling rules will add to Gulf woes

Federal regulations announced in April to prevent oil spills worry energy industry members and vessel operators in the Gulf of Mexico (GOM), who say the cost of compliance will add to economic difficulties in the sector.

Oil’s extended slump puts future of shallow-water sector in doubt

Oil’s extended slump puts future of shallow-water sector in doubt

Vessels cold-stacked. Hundreds of mariners out of work. And crude prices nowhere near the $107-per-barrel peak that kept companies working — and investing — in the Gulf of Mexico’s shallow waters just two years ago.

Shipping groups devise strategy to reduce crew harassment, bullying

Say goodbye, Captain Bligh. The International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) and the International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF), in partnership with seafarers’ unions, have issued new guidance on eliminating shipboard harassment and bullying.

Metal Trades’ first-ever tug is a nimble little boat that will deliver

Metal Trades’ first-ever tug is a nimble little boat that will deliver

It’s a little 850-hp pushboat with a big job. It’s also the first tug its shipyard has ever built.

Big Apple’s new harbor tanker makes the captain’s job easier

Big Apple’s new harbor tanker makes the captain’s job easier

In the predawn hours, even before the New York Water Taxis start their morning runs out of Brooklyn’s Erie Basin, the yellow passenger vessels’ new neighbor has its engines fired up, pilothouse lit and crew’s hot coffee poured.

New Texas A&M boat gets researchers right where they need to go

New Texas A&M boat gets researchers right where they need to go

As Capt. Steve Brown entered Bolivar Roads at the entrance to Galveston Bay, he opened up the Scania mains, propelling Texas A&M’s new 65-foot research and training vessel up to 22 knots, then demonstrated a very flat turn at speed.

Crewman drowns, four rescued after towboat capsizes in Texas

Crewman drowns, four rescued after towboat capsizes in Texas

A towboat capsized in the San Jacinto River near Houston, leading to the loss of one of five crewmembers.

Overboard engineer found dead after suffering possible heart attack

A towboat engineer disappeared from a vessel, leading to a multi-agency search of the Monongahela River near Belle Vernon, Pa., before he was found dead in the water.

TSB: Tugboat sank after repair failed to seal gap in deck plating

A tugboat sank near British Columbia’s Merry Island last year because inadequate maintenance and an incomplete repair allowed downflooding, Canada’s Transportation Safety Board (TSB) has determined.

Outdated chart, poor navigation caused bulker grounding, TSB says

Ineffective visual navigation and using an outdated electronic chart led to the grounding of a Canadian bulk carrier, Canada’s Transportation Safety Board (TSB) said.

Sleepy helmsman heard port, steered starboard in tanker grounding

Crew fatigue led to the grounding of an oil tanker in northern Canada when a helmsman repeatedly turned the ship in the opposite direction of the master’s orders, according to the Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB).

Tug sinks in St. Lawrence River as barge swings on anchoring pylon

Tug sinks in St. Lawrence River as barge swings on anchoring pylon

A tugboat sank in the St. Lawrence River when the excavation barge it was tending failed to raise one of four support pylons, pivoted in the current and swamped the tug.

Boulder stuck in bulk carrier’s hull after Columbia River grounding

Boulder stuck in bulk carrier’s hull after Columbia River grounding

The U.S. Coast Guard is investigating why a grain carrier ran aground in the Columbia River and ended up with a boulder lodged in its hull.

Fire causes $1 million in damage to pushboat at Houston terminal

A pushboat moored at a chemical refinery in the Houston Ship Channel caught fire and sustained heavy damage.

Crew rescued after scallop boat hits ATB, sinks off Cape May

Crew rescued after scallop boat hits ATB, sinks off Cape May

Three fishermen escaped injury after their scallop boat collided with an articulated tug-barge and sank off Cape May, N.J.

Navigation inattention led to Newfoundland ferry striking bottom

A Newfoundland ferry went off course and struck a rock because of insufficient monitoring by the bridge team, investigators have determined.

Maritime satcom: More providers, more options to meet an expanding world of needs

Maritime satcom: More providers, more options to meet an expanding world of needs

Trends in land-based and space-based communications seem to have gone in different directions.

Embrace technology to take care of your shoreside business

My dad was from Minnesota, and he began his career as a coal passer on the Great Lakes, later sailing as an able seaman and boatswain on oceangoing commercial vessels in the 1950s and 1960s.