The Club has noticed a number of collision claims at anchorages in the port of Singapore recently. Analysis of the claim files highlights the fact that in many cases the masters and crew members had failed to maintain vigilant GMDSS watch for obtaining the weather forecast and did not keep their vessels’ main engines ready for immediate manoeuvring while at anchor. These had rendered the vessels unprepared and when the weather deteriorated their anchors dragged and resulted in the collisions.
The port of Singapore is located within the tropical/equatorial zone where weather changes irregularly, especially during the monsoon season. ‘Sumatra squalls’, one of the weather phenomena we often experience in this region could bring gusting winds of up to 46 knots. Singapore Port Operation Control Centre (POCC) broadcasts weather warnings to vessels in the port of Singapore whenever adverse weather which may cause concern is forecasted. Vigilant GMDSS watch would allow masters and crew members to obtain weather forecasts in good time, and the vessel could be better prepared for the forthcoming adverse weather to prevent anchor dragging.
The limitation of sea room at the anchorages in port of Singapore requires masters to maintain their vessels in a state of readiness at all times, including keeping the main engines ready for immediate manoeuvring while at anchor as required by the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore in the Port Marine Circular No. 2 of 2007.
Members are advised to reiterate the importance of vigilant weather watch and readiness of vessels’ engines while anchored in the port of Singapore to their masters and crew members to ensure the safety of their vessels while at anchor. Source of information: National Environment Agency of Singapore http://app.nea.gov.sg/data/mss/pdf/26March07.pdf Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore: http://www.mpa.gov.sg/sites/circulars_and_notices/pdfs/port_marine_circulars/pc07-02.pdf