Sunday, July 27, 2014

END OF PASSAGE

After several years of publication, including a previous hiatus, NAUTICAL LOG has decided that the Blog has run its course.  For now we shall continue to re-blog some maritime items such as the M-Notices from the UK MCA now published under "government publications" prior to ceasing publication.  We shall also not be commenting on the Posts of other maritime blogs. 

This decision was reached due to an apparent lack of interest now in NAUTICAL LOG indicated by the lack of response to our concerns with safe boating particularly in the South Florida region. No responses to our e-mails from those captains supposedly interested in making a difference by changes in local boat operation regulations.  Recently no comments have been received on the Posts subject matter making our efforts rather pointless.

Good Watch.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

NLIN #7 - 2014

The following M Notices are now available at www.gov.uk/government/publications (note this new e-mail address).  If you have problems call 023 8032 9391

MIN  479 (M) Maritime Labour Convention, 2006: Food and Catering; Recognised Courses for Ship's Cooks foe Food Hygiene or Food Safety in Catering.

MGN 478 (M) Maritime Labour Convention, 2006: Wages.

MGN 479 (M) Maritime Labour Convention, 2006: Repatriation.

MGN 480 (M) Maritime Labour Convention, 2006: Shipowners Liabilities including Seafarer Compensation.

MGN 485 (M) Maritime Labour Convention, 2006: Seafarer Employment Agreements - Application to Trainees.

MSN 1838 (M) Maritime Labour Convention, 2006: Minimum Age.

MSN 1839 (M) Maritime Labour Convention, 2006 Medical Certification

MSN 1841 (M) Maritime Labour Convention, 2006: Medical Care Ship's Doctors.

MSN 1844 (M) Maritime Labour Convention, 2006: Crew Accommodation.

MSN 1845 (M) Maritime Labour Convention, 2006: Food and Catering: Provision of Food and Fresh Water.

MSN 1846 (M) Maritime Labour Convention, 2006: Food and Catering: Ship's Cooks and Catering Staff.

Good Watch.




Sunday, July 13, 2014

WASTING MY TIME ?

 

Over the years NAUTICAL LOG has published many Posts about boating safety and the importance of the Nautical Rules of the Road with just an occasional comment.  Recently there was a series of ten (10) Posts on the Steering and Sailing Rules section which inspired not a single comment - disappointing and somewhat disheartening to say the least.  Naturally NAUTICAL LOG wondered if this was a waste of time as there was no apparent interest in boating safety either from most boaters, at least those in this area, or from the "Concerned Authorities" of our incompetent U.S. Administration which has left our Nation virtually leaderless and rapidly declining on all fronts at the Federal, State and Local levels.  So once again NAUTICAL LOG is ready to cease publication.

Recently in Biscayne Bay, FL we have had two catastrophic boating accidents resulting in deaths and these seem to have finally triggered a reaction from those who really count in all of this - the professional boating Captains. 

The local Media has been covering these boating accidents with various levels of reporter boating knowledge from total ignorance to some basic boating knowledge and the various points-of-view expressed.  Under the headline "An urgent push for safety" the "Miami Herald" Sunday July 13, 2014 edition covered the latest action.  It is much needed as one of the persons (name withheld by NAUTICAL LOG but published by the Miami Herald ) interviewed stated:

"It's not the drinking. Everybody drink's" he said. " It's just that everybody is so irresponsible. I have one beer, sometimes two, and I stop.  I'm responsible for my boat and the people". 

Well this is just the attitude that gets people into trouble - no not everybody drinks when boating.  In the State of Florida the boating adult BAC (blood alcohol level) for intoxication is 0.08 and your two beers could well do that nicely due to the motion action of the boat and the high temperatures.  For the boating minor the BAC is 0.02.  These are the BAC levels for being charged with BUI (boating under the influence) in the State of Florida. So perhaps you are not being as responsible as you think you are and therein lies a major part of the safe boating problem.

The two captains mentioned above are Bric Peeples and Terry Claus who have taken to Facebook ® to publish what they feel should be done.  They have enlisted the help of local maritime attorney Bruce Mars, Washington, DC boating and fishing lobbyist Jim Donofrio and in addition they are contacting the FWC and members of the Miami-Dade County Commission. 

They propose
  • a night-time speed limit and idle zones
  • mandatory licensing
  • on-water education for recreational boaters
  • harsh penalties for boating under the influence
  • a change in lighting requirements for recreational boaters
  • daytime idle speed around popular sandbars off Key Biscayne
NAUTICAL LOG fully supports these points and offers his assistance.  We do not have Facebook® or Twitter ® so you may make contact through this Blog.  Cory Offutt of Tow-BoatUS Miami proposes a campaign to "shock and educate boaters into safe boating" .  Again NAUTICAL LOG fully supports this approach and once again offers assistance. 

Good Watch.


Thursday, July 10, 2014

NLIN #6 - 2014

The following M-Notices are available at www.gov.uk/mca if you have problems call 023 8032 9391


MIN 486 (M)  Support for Maritime Training (SMarT) - Additional Funds of up to £3 million

MGN 511 (M) Solid Bulk Cargoes - Adoption of Amendment 02-13 to the International Maritime Solid Bulk Cargoes (IMSBC0 Code - MSC 1/Circ.1452

MGN 512 (M) Solid Bulk Caroes - Guidelines for the submission of Information and Completion of the Format for the Properties of Cargoes not listed in the International Maritime Solid Bulk Cargoes (IMSBC) Code and their Conditions of Carriage - MSC. 1/Circ.1453

MGN 513 (M) Solid Bulk Cargoes - Guidelines for Developing and Approving Procedures for Sampling, Testing and Controlling the Moisture Content for Solid Bulk Cargoes which may Liquefy ' MSC. 1/Circ. 1454

MGN 514 (M) Solid Bulk Cargoes - Early Implementation of the Draft Agreement 03-15 to the International Maritime Solid Bulk Cargoes (IMSBC) Code related to the Carriage and Testing of Iron Ore Fines - DSC. 1/Circ.71

Good Watch.

Monday, July 7, 2014

ANOTHER HOLIDAY ANOTHER ACCIDENT

Sunday July 06, 2014.

NAUTICAL LOG was away for the Independence Day weekend only to return to South Florida on Sunday evening to learn of a horrendous boating accident on Friday July 04, 2014 night in Biscayne Bay.  According to the "Miami Herald", (from which NAUTICAL LOG is taking the story)  the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC), and United States Coast Guard (USCG)   three boats came into collision resulting in the deaths of four (4) adults and injuries to nine (9) other persons one of whom is in a coma and the others with critical to minor injuries.  Fortunately two children involved one five (5) years old and the other two (2) years old are both uninjured.


 

The FWC is the State of Florida inland and part-offshore water law enforcement agency, of course the USCG is the Federal law enforcement agency and part of U.S. Homeland Security.  All were involved in the water rescues passing over the victims to Miami-Dade County Fire Rescue for further medical assistance and transportation to local hospitals.  A full investigation into the cause of the accident which occurred at 2240 (10.40 PM) is underway as well as an accident reconstruction.
 
*********************************************************************

This morning Monday July 07, 2014 again from the "Miami Herald" the results of the FWC investigation and accident reconstruction have been published.  It started with a 32-foot Contender center-console with five (5) persons, three (3) of whom died, on board the other two (2) being critically injured.  The boat a 32-foot they hit had eight (8) persons on board, one (1) of whom was killed, included two children who were uninjured.  Spinning out of control they hit a third boat a 35-foot boat Boston Whaler which had eight (8) persons on board uninjured except for one (1) of whom had a laceration.  The accident occurred three miles south of Rickenbacker Causeway in Biscayne Bay.

NAUTICAL LOG notes that so far there is no information from the FWC regarding the following:
  • whether lifejackets were worn particularly by the children in those boats
  • whether the boat operators were licensed by the USCG
  • any other boating qualifications of the boat operators involved
  • the boat handling skills of the boat operators involved
  • knowledge of the Nautical Rules of the Road of the boat operators
  • was alcohol or drug use involved (there is a waterfront gossip report alcohol was in the boat that caused the accident)

The following data is from the FWC Boating Accidents Statistical Report 2013:

BOATING ACCIDENTS
  • Florida leads the Nation with a total of 896,632 registered vessels.  In 2013 there were736 reportable boating accidents, resulting in 420 injuries.  The rate of injury was 47 injuries per 1000,000 vessels.
  • May was the month with the highest numbe5r of accidents.
  • Miami-Dade County reported the highest number of accidents and injuries (104 accidents with 4 fatalities and 50 injuries.

FLORIDA BOATING FATALITIES
  • The total fatality count for 2013was 62
  • The deadliest month in 2013 was December with 12 fatalities
  • Percentage of boating fatalities where alcohol or drug-use played a role was 15%
  • Nearly half of all fatal accidents in 2013 involved vessels 16 feet or less in length.

Boat Safe and Always Wear a Lifejacket

Good Watch.

Monday, June 30, 2014

SO IT BEGAN AND BEGINS

It was on a State Visit by the Austro-Hungarian Archduke and his wife to Serbia that the event occurred which set off World War 1.  While visiting Sarajevo on June 28, 1914 a bomb was thrown in a botched assassination attempt which failed to kill the Archduke but injured several bystanders.  Later in the visit the Royal couple being concerned for those injured decided to visit them in the hospital.  Unfortunately on the way there they were spotted by some of the group sent to assassinate them and both were shot dead by a member of that group.  Sadly their act of kindness somewhat rare in those times by such people led to their assassination. 


 

Even worse of course was that the Austro-Hungarian Empire attacked Serbia with artillery fire on July 28, 1914.  This was followed by the various European Nations and Russia taking sides resulting in The First World War which lasted until an Armistice was agreed to beginning on November 11, 1918 at the eleventh hour.

In its turn this Armistice led to the Second World War when the Germans who had actually marched home from the WW1 battlefields in France and Belgium were regarded by many as victors.  However the Revolution in Russia led to one in Germany with the Kaiser of the German Empire being deposed and going into exile in The Netherlands.  After considerable turmoil in Germany the National Socialist Party became dominant and it's leader Adolf Hitler was appointed by President Paul von Hindenburg of the Wiemar Republic (1925-1934) to form a government.  In turn this led to the Nazi dictatorship and the Second World War.

The root causes of the crisis in Europe that led to WW1 were poor leadership and a reluctance to adapt to a changing social world and a move against rule by Royalty.

Does any of this have a familiar ring because it should.  At present we are seeing the results of a botched war in Iraq a country created by the British after The Second World War along with several others in that Region.  The United States involvement in Iraq under a Republican Administration included a change of Administration with the election of a new President from the Democratic Party.  As things turned out the new President waffled and wimped his way to a departure from Iraq which had elected a biased Prime Minister who demanded the United States forces leave without any agreements in place.  

This gave the perfect opportunity to the radical Muslims of the "Islamic State of Iraq and Syria" (ISIS) to form a force based in Syria which was already fighting a civil war to attack across the border into Iraq.  With lightening speed they have captured huge tracts of that country as the Iraq defence forces deserted the battlefield.  Now they have declared a Muslim Caliphate which was the term used in Medieval times to describe an Islamic State ruled by Sharia Law.  A self-appointed Caliph is demanding that all Muslims wherever they are living become loyal to this Muslim Caliphate and obey its demands just in time for Ramadan the lunar month of Muslim fasting.

Once again as for WW1 poor leadership and a reluctance to adapt to social change has contributed in a major way to this ISIS success.  An example of just how severe this poor leadership is resulted in the U.S. President being called a "coward" by a retired Lt. Col. of the U.S. military on U.S.national television during a News show.

Count D. Peter Boucher, Kt. SMOM.

Saturday, June 21, 2014

HYDROGRAPHY DAY

HAPPY WORLD HYDROGRAPHY DAY !!
 
From NOAA on this first day of Summer;  "Every year the international hydrographic community celebrates World Hydrography Day on June 21.  The 2014 theme established by the International Hydrographic Organization is Hydrography - More than Nautical Charts"
 
NOAA's Office of Coast Survey invited articles from the public and these have been posted as an  article collection.  The articles illustrate marine ecology, archeology, energy and water resource management and emergency response.  The NOAA Coast Survey blog is at noaacoastsurvey.wordpress.com
 
Good Watch

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

GONE FISHING

UPDATE 06/18/2014:

While not directly connected to Biscayne National Park another ocean park has been expanded this week.  The Pacific Remote Islands Marine National Monument which surrounds small islands and atolls controlled by the United States Government was expanded from 87,000 square miles to 782,000 square miles.



Area of PRIMNM
 
 
Yes well there are plenty of places around the coasts of South Florida but it appears that Biscayne National Park www.nps.gov/bisc/ will no longer be one of them.



Biscayne National Park
 
This is due basically to both overfishing and destructive fishing methods.  Quietly but steadily under several Park Superintendents the reduction of fishing has been introduced.  Now however it has got to the point that both the fish and habitat are suffering to the level that there will eventually be no fish and a destroyed habitat.

Biscayne National Park proposes measures to do several things:
  • Phase out commercial fishing in Park waters
  • Ending the two day lobster mini season
  • Impose restrictions to hopefully revive the 270 square mile underwater park
  • Outlaw shrimp trawling which is destroying the bottom habitats 
  • Prohibiting traps on some reefs
Other possibilities:
  • Ban fishing entirely
  • Ban weekend parties which are scarring the flats and kill sea grass
The Park Administration hopes that the changes would:
  • Dramatically raise the catch size on popular fish
  • Outlaw spear guns and allow spearfishing only
  • Establish no-trawl zones to restore sea grass and bottom habitats
  • Make some reefs off limits to lobster and crab traps so as to restore and protect remaining coral

While State regulators endorse the plan they insist that recreation be available to the boating public.  In what seems strange to NAUTICAL LOG the Office of one of our local U.S. Representatives (R) Miami put out a statement saying the proposed rules are too restrictive, her thinking  seems to be that while she and her family enjoy the water they are not quite dedicated to preserving it for future generations.  Her statement said that the "restrictive recommendations would eliminate the average family and individual"  how this would occur is not explained by her and her logic is not followed by NAUTICAL LOG .  The real truth behind her rather ridiculous statement is more likely based on the Republican fear of big government controlling the populace and current Administration being Democrat.  It possibly comes down to the narrow-minded thinking of the bulk of her constituents on certain issues currently lost in their country of origin and not learning to relate to the broader American viewpoint of both enjoying the things we have but also working to preserve them for the future generations.  This U.S. Representative should be supporting the effort to maintain the Biscayne National Park for all Americans of the future generations.  NAUTICAL LOG finds her statement self-centered, without value and playing to a section of local politics for some unknown reason.  This is something we go through daily in South Florida which is overburdened by 65% of one ethnic group of which she is one.

All of the Park Administration points listed above will have their critics and supporters but the truth of the matter is that after living here for 45 years it is clearly necessary that they are but in place so that "average family and individual" can enjoy them both now and in the future. 

Good Watch.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

CORRECTLY NAMED

HAPPY FATHERS DAY !!

At last after the same paper the Miami Herald keeps calling it the "boat slip" today it referred to it as the "fully-refurbished deepwater slip" which is what it really is.  The Museum Park officially reopened attended by those same local politicians who were of course at hand to take full advantage of the USCG Eagle sail-training ship arriving to spend the Father's Day weekend.  (see photo)


USCGC Eagle berthing at the Museum Park deepwater slip

It is due to the efforts of such citizens organizations as the Downtown Neighborhood Alliance that the Museum Park, a public park, was not mutilated - once again - to build a soccer stadium to brush the ego of a retired British soccer player and his group of local developers.  The initial dazzlement by this person of at least some of the local politicians faded away to the point that the wishes of the public were recognized and acted upon.

Good Watch.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

OCEAN DIVES

NAUTICAL LOG has added the website Nautilus Live to our Blog List covering the work of Dr. Robert Ballard and his Corps of Exploration in their vessel EV Nautilus.



This is a particularly interesting site not alone for the work being accomplished but the fact that one can watch live from their shipboard and ROV cameras.  The "quad" channel covers all the activity going on deck and underwater with a divided screen and gives a sense of being on board.

The EV Nautilus sailed from Port Everglades, FL this week and has already covered their first dive site north of Bimini, Bahamas.  Now they are heading southwards on the Grand Bahama Bank to a second dive site and hope to be active there at 1300 local time.

NAUTICAL LOG shall be following their activity and shall Post as necessary, by entering your e-mail address you can receive reports directly (well hopefully - nothing so far!!).  Anyway everything is on their website.

Good Watch.