U.S. Federal Maritime Commissioner Carl Bentzel says that he hopes to win the approval from maritime stakeholders for new data transparency standards organized under the proposed Maritime Transportation Data Initiative (MTDI).

He hopes MTDI will mitigate any future supply chain congestion crisis such as the one the nation experienced between 2020 and 2022.

Bentzel made a presentation of his findings at the Intermodal Association of North America’s (IANA) Intermodal Safety Committee on September 12th during the IANA Intermodal Expo at Long Beach, California.

Bentzel was nominated by President Trump on June 12, 2019 to a term expiring on June 30, 2024. Prior to his appointment at the Federal Maritime Commission (FMC), Commissioner Bentzel created and established a consulting services company where he represented clients on regulatory and legislative issues within the areas of transportation, energy, and other areas of federal regulatory oversight.

U.S. Federal Maritime Commissioner Carl Bentzel

In an interview with AJOT, Bentzel said: “I think the proposed Maritime Transportation Data Initiative (MTDI) will mitigate this from happening again because you will have the information earlier in the process. Right now, no steps can be taken to mitigate because the information usually comes after the event. This will provide a network of information that will give the possibility of trying to adjust … including repositioning the equipment. So yes, I think this will mitigate the impacts of severe alterations … However, that said, supply and demand or natural events can overcome even information. So, I think it will help because we’ll be getting real time information about equipment incidents.”

He said the genesis for the MTDI came as congestion problems mounted in 2020: “We were in contact with port authorities during the early part of the congestion. In July of 2020, we started to assess what was happening at the ports. We started to hear that there were backups of cargo at the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach. At that time, I was in contact with the port authorities about the causes of the congestion. It was clear that the information flow was at least contributing to the challenges. Shippers were getting ETAs from the carriers that were being revised continually.”

The feedback from maritime stakeholders has been mostly positive: “The feedback that we have been receiving from maritime stakeholders is that they have information, and it would perhaps require some adjustment to how they provide the information. But they can do this… We are not getting cargo information per se. And we’re allowing that to be closed. And that’s what they tell us is proprietary. What I’m requiring to be open … (is what) … you can see with your eyes. That’s something we might request further harmonization and further specificity. But these are not issues that are proprietary, they are common knowledge. Open information is public information that the public should have access to related to the transportation and real time operations related to the status of operations and for the ancillary facilities that service the ports. So, this would include a terminal when they are open and (when) they are closing it to empty returns and policies that govern access to that facility. Closed is information with parties that are legally entitled to receive the information with appropriate encryption … We’re not changing that at all.”


He said railroads will have to provide some information, but they are not directly under the jurisdiction of the Federal Maritime Commission: “We don’t have direct jurisdiction over the railroads. We have jurisdiction over the practices of ocean carriers and marine terminals under a through bill of lading. The only way that I can enforce it is to go after a regulated entity and say you can’t, in your intermodal practices, have a carrier that’s not compliant with these same standards.”

China’s Container & Chassis Dominance

Finally, Bentzel recently published a report warning about China’s dominance of container and chassis manufacturing markets entitled: “Assessment of P.R.C. Control of Container and Intermodal Chassis Manufacturing.”

Bentzel noted that the three largest Chinese manufacturers control over 86% of the world’s supply of intermodal chassis and those same companies manufacture over 95% of the world’s market in containers, including “U.S. domestic train and truck intermodal containers.”

He further noted that the U.S. Department of Commerce has determined that “Chinese container and chassis manufacturers are state-owned and controlled and are recipients of large government subsidies.”

Bentzel’s report concluded: “… the global supply chain is too interdependent not to have broad access and manufacturing capabilities for intermodal operational equipment. The United States should assess whether given (China’s) market dominance that further trade action be contemplated and whether to invest more aggressively in next generation container manufacturing technology.”

Source: https://ajot.com/insights/full/ai-fmcs-bentzel-explains-proposed-maritime-transportation-data-initiative


CREWEXPRESS STCW REST HOURS SOFTWARE - Paris and Tokyo MoU have announced that they will jointly launch a new Concentrated Inspection Campaign (CIC) on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers (STCW) from 1st September 2022 to 30th November 2022


Belgian offshore contractor Jan De Nul said that its jackup installation newbuild Voltaire had suffered minor damage after being hit by typhoon Muifa at COSCO Shipping Shipyard in Nantong, China.

The eye of the typhoon passed over the shipyard during the night of September 14 to 15, causing the vessel to come loose from its moorings.

The company said that the incident caused no injuries, while the first sight assessments have shown limited damage to certain parts of the crane and the helideck.

The vessel has been safely moored back in the shipyard and further assessments are ongoing.

The Voltaire is said to be as large as the Eiffel Tower in Paris. The vessel, due for delivery in the second half of 2022, will be the second and largest jackup in Jan De Nul’s fleet built to transport, lift and install next-generation offshore wind turbines, transition pieces and foundations.

Source: https://splash247.com/jan-de-nuls-jackup-installation-newbuild-hit-by-typhoon-in-china/

CREWEXPRESS STCW REST HOURS SOFTWARE - Paris and Tokyo MoU have announced that they will jointly launch a new Concentrated Inspection Campaign (CIC) on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers (STCW) from 1st September 2022 to 30th November 2022

Washington, D.C.—A federal watchdog agency told Congress the Maritime Administration (MarAd) should develop regulations to enforce cargo preference requirements intended to support the U.S.-flag shipping industry.

Those requirements are to ensure the industry has sufficient vessels and mariners to supplement the cargo-carrying capacity of military ships during times of war and national emergencies, said Andrew Von Ah, director of Physical Infrastructure, Government Accountability Office (GAO).

Appearing before the House Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation, Von Ah based his testimony on GAO’s newly released report on enhancing cargo preference oversight.

GAO reported MarAd has never taken enforcement action on potential violations even though it has notified federal agencies and contractors of the potential violations. In its report, the agency blamed MarAd’s lack of enforcement action in part on its failure to develop regulations.

GAO also recommended that MarAd publicly report cargo preference data it receives.

Testifying on behalf of USA Maritime, Eric Ebeling, president and CEO of American Roll-On Roll-Off Carrier Group, expressed hope the GAO report will demonstrate robust support for enforcement of cargo preference laws.

“U.S. cargo preference laws are crucial to the continued existence of the active, commercially viable, privately-owned U.S.-flag commercial shipping fleet, the most cost-effective sealift capability available to the U.S. government,” Ebeling said.

In her testimony to the panel, MarAd Administrator Ann Phillips, a retired Navy rear admiral, spoke of the importance of the Jones Act, the Maritime Security Program and cargo preference programs.

Phillips also testified about a future rulemaking effort, cited the Biden administration’s proposal to eliminate a three-year waiting period to attract new vessels and told the House panel of a summit with industry and labor on mariner recruitment and retention.

For some, however, those efforts would be doomed to fail.

“I believe we need a new law,” Rep. John Garamendi (D-Calif.) said, citing the lack of progress made by Phillips’ predecessors.   

Permitting Reform

Despite stout opposition from fellow Democrats and others, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) predicted success for his plan to place permitting reform legislation in a must-pass continuing resolution (CR) to keep federal agencies funded.

“I’m going to add it to the CR, and it will pass,” Schumer said.

He explained his agreement on moving permitting reform with Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) was part of an agreement on the Inflation Reduction Act whose passage continues to be celebrated by President Joe Biden and other Democratic leaders.

Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont, an independent who caucuses with Democrats, described the plan to attach Manchin’s fossil fuel “side deal” to the CR as an outrage.

“We must take on the greed of Big Oil & reject this dirty deal,” Sanders tweeted.

Over on the House side, more than 70 members have signed letters to Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) opposing putting a permitting rider in the CR.

Led by Rep. Raul Grijalva (D-Ariz.), chair of the House Natural Resources Committee, one letter described the language cited in media reports as “destructive provisions” that would allow polluting projects to be rushed through before those impacted would even be aware of them.

CG Reauthorization

A key Senate committee advanced a bipartisan bill reauthorizing the Coast Guard and providing funding to help keep the maritime economy moving and the ports and waterways safe.

Passed by a voice vote, S.4802 now goes to the full Senate.

In addition to the core mission, Sen. Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.), chair of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, said the bill also helps the Coast Guard crack down on illegal fishing, improve oil spill response and bolster the nation’s presence in the Arctic.

Cantwell also cited language she worked on with Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) to help members of the military become merchant mariners.

She was joined in introducing the bill by Sen. Roger Wicker (R-Miss.), the panel’s ranking member, and Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.), chair of Subcommittee on Oceans, Fisheries, Climate Change and Manufacturing.

BWMS Updates

The Coast Guard has provided two clarifications on a Ballast Water Management System (BWMS) concerning a Type Approval Certificate’s expiration date and on the use of existing type approval data in BWMS type approval for viability.

According to an update posted on the Marine Safety Center’s website, a BWMS Type Approval Certificate (TAC) expiration date indicates the dates between which a BWMS must be manufactured.

A type-approved BWMS manufactured within the TAC applicability dates remains in compliance for the lifetime of the system, assuming it is operated and maintained according to the Operation, Maintenance and Safety Manual. Stored onboard, the TAC is replaced only upon modification of the BWMS to comply with a revised TAC.

The other clarification concerns the Coast Guard’s position regarding consideration of existing testing data in type approving a BWMS using a viability testing method, should the Coast Guard accept such a testing method.

Source: https://www.waterwaysjournal.net/2022/09/16/gao-maritime-administration-should-develop-cargo-preference-requirements/


CREWEXPRESS STCW REST HOURS SOFTWARE - Paris and Tokyo MoU have announced that they will jointly launch a new Concentrated Inspection Campaign (CIC) on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers (STCW) from 1st September 2022 to 30th November 2022


NAVTOR has secured an agreement with Shoei Kisen Kaisha, Ltd., one of Japan’s largest shipowners and managers, to deliver the NavFleet application across their fleet of managed vessels. The digital platform will allow the firm to securely share real-time vessel data with onshore teams, ensuring “next level” monitoring of assets, supporting optimal safety, efficiency, compliance, and operational decision making.

Integrated approach

Shoei Kisen, a part of Imabari Shipbuilding (Japan’s largest shipbuilder), will now introduce NavFleet to the existing NAVTOR digital ecosystem onboard its bulk carriers and container ships. This integrated system includes the NavStation digital chart table software (with automated Passage Planning), NavBox, a certified cyber secure gateway for seamless data transfer, and NavCloud cloud computing services.

Masaru Matsumoto, Deputy General Manager Ship Department, Shoei Kisen, comments: “After several product comparisons, NavFleet’s integrated service stood out. It allows us to check the fleet passage plans in a timely manner from shore on the same screen as the vessel, and to continuously monitor deviations from routes. It’s a very innovative solution.”

Hiroaki Kitano, NAVTOR Japan Managing Director

Realising ambitions

From NAVTOR’s perspective, it is, according to Hiroaki Kitano, NAVTOR Japan Managing Director, “a landmark contract” – for both his business and the client.

“NavFleet was launched last year as a key enabler in our mission to make maritime operations simpler, safer, more efficient and increasingly sustainable for our customers,” he states. “As a single, secure, scalable and fully integrated digital platform it works to bridge the gap between vessels and land-based management teams, seamlessly sharing real-time data for complete situational awareness and improved decision making.

“For a forward-leaning company like Shoei Kisen, it is an ideal application to help them reach ambitious business goals. We’re delighted a company of their industry standing has recognised the unique benefits of NavFleet, and look forward to assisting them in their sustainable growth and success.”

Shoei Kisen Kaisha – one of Japan’s largest shipowners and managers

Continual development

NAVTOR is a Norwegian-headquartered maritime technology company with a specialism in e-Navigation and performance monitoring and optimisation. Launched in 2011, it is now established as the world’s largest ENC distributor, with products and services on more than 8,000 vessels. Since opening the doors of its Japan office in 2015, it has captured a significant domestic market share.

“Japan is an important market for NAVTOR, and NavFleet a key development, so Hiroaki is right to refer to this as a landmark agreement,” comments Børge Hetland, CCO, NAVTOR.

NavFleet – paving the way for sustainable shipping

“Shoei Kisen is at the vanguard of the industry here, and we believe where they lead others will follow. Their office-based teams will now be able to see simultaneous displays of real-time vessel data and positioning, while monitoring routes and passage plans, and, in the event of route deviations, weather issues, speed reductions or schedule delays, receive timely alerts. This gives shore-based staff the insights and control they need to take swift action for safe, efficient and predictable operations and navigation. The benefits of that – in terms of addressing challenges and seizing opportunity – are immense.”

Alongside NAVTOR Japan, NAVTOR has a network of eight other office locations, more than 20 international distributors and customers from over 60 different countries.
Source: NAVTOR


CREWEXPRESS STCW REST HOURS SOFTWARE - Paris and Tokyo MoU have announced that they will jointly launch a new Concentrated Inspection Campaign (CIC) on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers (STCW) from 1st September 2022 to 30th November 2022


vessel with turnkey dredge package

The multipurpose vessel ENDAM combines oil spill recovery activities with maintenance dredging tasks

Built for the Korean Marine Environment Management Corporation (KOEM), the multipurpose vessel Endam combines emergency oil spill recovery activities with maintenance dredging tasks and features a turnkey dredge package supplied by Damen.

Designed by KmsEmec, the vessel features a 4,100 cubic meter hopper hold and was built by HJ Shipbuilding & Construction at its Busan shipyard. The mission equipment package provided by the Damen Technical Cooperation (DTC) team included a 15 meter rigid oil sweep arm with a dedicated pump and handling crane for the emergency oil spill recovery functionality, and the complete turnkey dredging system, which was designed specifically for the vessel.


The turnkey dredge package consisted of both loading and discharging equipment, a hydraulic system, dredging control system and various drives. A 900 mm trailing suction pipe, designed to dredge at a maximum depth of 30 meters, is hoisted by three dedicated gantries and their hydraulically operated winches. All the trailing suction pipe components are located starboard aft.

part of turnkey dredge package
The turnkey dredging package included a 900 mm trailing suction pipe designed for the vessel

A Damen dredge pump, type BP9075HD, completed the dredge pipe arrangements. The highly efficient slurry pump is designed for both suction dredging, as well as discharging over the bow using the bow coupling unit or rainbow nozzle. This hopper discharging equipment, including 12 bottom dump valves which Damen designed, was all part of the dredge package. Addtionally, dredge valves in various pressure stages were delivered for the suction and discharge piping. Dedicated dredging instrumentation completed the dredge package and is crucial to monitoring and visualizing the dredging process and optimizing dredging operations.

Turnkey dredge package components
The dredging components were effortlessly integrated in the locally designed and built multipurpose vessel

Thanks to the DTC team’s extensive experience in component integration at non-Damen yards, the large system parts were delivered from the Netherlands and integrated effortlessly. As well as the mission equipment, the delivery scope included a hydraulic system. This was a logical choice as the dredging equipment is its main user. Additionally, a 3,500-kW electric dredge pump drive and a 1,000-kW electric jet water pump drive were shipped to Korea. The delivery was completed with a full set of spares and Damen also carried out the commissioning and training on board.

The vessel’s name, Endam, means “the fence that protects you” in the Korean Jeju dialect. A festive handover ceremony took place in the summer and Endam has now successfully started operating along the Korean coast.

Source: https://www.marinelog.com/news/damen-delivers-turnkey-dredge-package-for-versatile-korean-newbuild/


CREWEXPRESS STCW REST HOURS SOFTWARE - Paris and Tokyo MoU have announced that they will jointly launch a new Concentrated Inspection Campaign (CIC) on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers (STCW) from 1st September 2022 to 30th November 2022


Offshore accommodation company CBED has won a contract extension for its Wind Innovation service operations vessel Wind Innovation.

Back in May, the company secured a contract for the vessel at the DanTysk and Sandbank offshore wind farms in the German North Sea.

Now, the extension has been secured with the wind farm owner, a joint venture between Vattenfall Europe Windkraft GmbH and Stadtwerke München GmbH Vattenfall, securing full activity for the SOV, Wind Innovation, from Q1 to Q4 2023. Financial details were not disclosed.

Daniel Alon, General Manager, CBED said: “Following a positive project opening, we are excited to extend our collaboration and offer comfortable living onboard Wind Innovation for the service teams for a prolonged period. In fact, this new contract marks CBED’s 30th offshore wind assignment, and also, on this occasion, we expect our joint operations to contribute to CBED’s collective and unparalleled offshore experience.”

DanTysk Sandbank Offshore Wind required a Walk-to-Work vessel that was equipped with DP2, and gangway capabilities and which, at the same time, met all technical and HS requirements.

“For this specific project, the offshore operations will benefit from the adjustable pedestal gangway, allowing the flexibility of connecting Wind Innovation to transition pieces of different heights across the two involved wind farms. Wind Innovation can operate as low as 11,95 m (LAT) from the lowest operation level up to 26,45 m (HAT) from the highest operating level,” CBED said.

CBED will use the Port of Esbjerg, Denmark, as the base port for crew change and loading of fresh supplies throughout the project period.

DanTysk offshore wind farm is located 70 km west of the island Sylt and has been in operation since 2014. Sandbank offshore wind farm is located 90 km west of Sylt and has been in operation since 2017. With their 152 turbines combined, the offshore wind farms have a total capacity of 576 MW, enough to provide electricity to more than half a million households.

Source: https://www.marinelink.com/news/cbeds-wind-innovation-sov-extends-stay-499506


CREWEXPRESS STCW REST HOURS SOFTWARE - Paris and Tokyo MoU have announced that they will jointly launch a new Concentrated Inspection Campaign (CIC) on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers (STCW) from 1st September 2022 to 30th November 2022