Tuesday, November 11, 2014

USCG Detains Bulk Carrier in Longview

By Mark Edward Nero

The US Coast Guard on Nov. 7 detained 600-foot motor vessel Ikan Sudip in Longview, Washington and is requiring the ship to remain moored until significant safety violations are corrected by the crew.

The safety violations were related to extensive disrepair of various piping systems in the machinery spaces. Coast Guard vessel inspectors also discovered that half of the vessel’s fire hoses were deteriorated and inoperable, greatly reducing the crew’s ability to fight shipboard fires.

The discrepancies were discovered by vessel inspectors from the Coast Guard Marine Safety Unit in Portland last week during a routine safety and regulatory compliance inspection of the Panama-flagged vessel.

The purpose of the Coast Guard’s Port State Control program is to eliminate safety hazards and environmental risks posed by foreign vessels operating in US waters. The program is, for foreign vessels calling on US ports, the primary means of enforcing internationally recognized standards for safety of life at sea.

The Ikan Sudip, owned by Grace Hawk Shipping S.A., is a 31,000-gross ton bulk carrier built in 2008 that loaded grain in Longview and is scheduled to depart for Manila, Philippines, after the safety violations have been corrected.

“The risks posed by the safety discrepancies rendered the vessel substandard with respect to US and international law,” Capt. Pat Ropp, Sector Columbia River officer in charge of marine inspection and commanding officer of Marine Safety Unit Portland, explained. “The deficiencies were determined to pose significant risk to the safety of the vessel, crew and port. They collectively indicate that the vessel is unfit to proceed to sea.”

The Coast Guard says it’s working with the vessel’s crew, owner and managing company to mitigate the safety violations and make repairs to the vessel.