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Hot Port News from GAC

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GAC-newYour daily news service from ports around the world.

In this HOT PORT NEWS, read about:
* Germany, Kiel Canal – Brunsbuttel locks closed due to extreme high water
* Finland, Helsinki – Port dues to rise in 2014
* Hong Kong, Hong Kong – Demolition of temporary platform
* Singapore, Pasir Panjang – Underwater drilling & blasting at terminal
* Panama, Panama Canal – Manning requirements for transiting vessels

DATE: December 05, 2013
COUNTRY: Germany
PORT: Kiel Canal
Brunsbuttel locks closed due to extreme high water

Due to the extreme bad weather/heavy storm and consequent high water
levels, Brunsbuttel locks were closed at 13.15 hours local time today (5

The authorities will monitor water levels and decide whether operation of
locks can resume during the next low water period (at 22.44 hours) to get
vessels inside the Canal out.

Vessels approaching from the Baltic are not allowed to enter the Kiel-Canal
until further notice.

(For information about operations in Germany contact the GAC UK Hub Agency
Centre at hub.gb@gac.com)

Source: Sartori & Berger, Germany – GAC network agent

DATE: December 05, 2013
COUNTRY: Finland
PORT: Helsinki
Port dues to rise in 2014

The Port of Helsinki has announced that it will increase tariffs by
approximately 2% in 2014. Tentatively, this will affect garbage dues,
harbour dues and fresh water.

Details will be provided once the new tariffs are officially released.

For information about operations in Finland contact GAC Finland at

DATE: December 05, 2013
COUNTRY: Hong Kong
PORT: Hong Kong
Demolition of temporary platform

For approximately 6 months, marine works involving dismantling of a
temporary platform will be carried out [at Mo Tat Wan, Lamma Island] in the
area bounded by straight lines joining the following co-ordinates (WGS 84
Datum) from (A) to (D) and the adjacent shoreline:
(A) 22º 12.525’N / 114º 08.532’E
(B) 22º 12.543’N / 114º 08.540’E
(C) 22º 12.531’N / 114º 08.567’E
(D) 22º 12.508’N / 114º 08.555’E

The works will be carried out by one derrick barge and one flat top barge.
The number of vessels engaged in the works will change from time to time to
suit operational requirements.

A working area of approximately 30 metres around each barge will be
established. Yellow marker buoys fitted with yellow flashing lights will be
laid to mark the positions of the anchors extending from the barges.

The hours of work will be from 0700 to 1900 hours. No works will be carried
out on Sundays and public holidays. Vessels employed for the works will
stay in the works area outside the hours of work.

Vessels engaged in the operations will display signals as prescribed in
international and local regulations.

(For information about operations in Hong Kong contact GAC Hong Kong at

Source: Government of Hong Kong SAR Marine Department Notice No.148 of 2013
dated 3 December 2013

DATE: December 05, 2013
COUNTRY: Singapore
PORT: Pasir Panjang
Underwater drilling & blasting at terminal

The working area has been revised and the working period extended for
underwater drilling & blasting works at Pasir Panjang Terminal, Phase 3 &
4. The works will now be conducted from 6 to 13 December.

According to the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore Port Marine
Notice No. 157 of 2013 dated 4 December 2013, the works will be carried out
in the vicinity of Pasir Panjang Terminal, within the working area bounded
by the following co-ordinates (WGS 84 Datum):

1) 1 deg. 16.552’N / 103 deg. 46.515’E
2) 1 deg. 16.400’N / 103 deg. 46.425’E
3) 1 deg. 16.301’N / 103 deg. 46.590’E
4) 1 deg. 16.452’N / 103 deg. 46.680’E

Drilling will be carried out 24 hours daily, including Sundays and Public

Blasting work will be carried out daily in accordance to the following
schedule except on Sundays and Public Holidays:
1. 0800–0900 hours
2. 1200–1400 hours
3. 1630–1830 hours

Drilling and blasting works in Sector F2 Area shall only be carried out
when P24–P25 is closed to all PSA berthing/unberthing operations.

Prior to commencement of drilling and blasting works at Sector F2 Area, an
approach channel (of at least 300m wide) with a restriction on vessel of
greater than 210m will be established so as to allow PSA
berthing/unberthing operations to P25-P26.

Underwater drilling and blasting works will be carried out by work barge,
Orion 84, held in position by 4-point anchor winch/wire spread. Orion 84
will have a circular safety working zone in accordance to the Explosive
Safety Regulations centered at the barge.

During the operation, Orion 84 shall be attended to by anchor/tug boats.
Storage of explosives will be on board a licensed Explosive Lighter Barge
guarded by Armed Protection Officers (APOs) at all times.

Safety boats will be in attendance at all times to warn and re-direct craft
in the vicinity to keep clear of the on-going underwater drilling and
blasting work area.

The following Blast Warning Procedure will be adopted for each underwater
blasting operation:
a) All personnel will be evacuated from the danger zone prior to blasting
b) APOs in Safety Boats will cordon off the blasting area 30mins prior to
commencement of blasting operations;
c) Two (2) prolonged horn blasts will be sounded 15mins prior to
commencement of blasting operations;
d) Red Flag will be hoisted to warn mariners 5mins prior to commencement of
blasting operations;
e) Three (3) short horn blasts will be sounded 5mins prior to commencement
of blasting operations;
f) Four (4) short horn blasts will be sounded immediately prior to blasting
operations – blast is initiated on fourth (4th) horn blast;
g) One (1) prolonged horn blasts will be sounded after the completion of
blasting operations; and
h) Red Flag will be lowered to signal the completion of blasting

Craft involved in the works will exhibit the appropriate local and
international day and night signals.

When in the vicinity of the working area, mariners are reminded to:
(a) keep well clear and not to enter the working area;
(b) maintain a proper lookout;
(c) proceed at a safe speed and navigate with caution;
(d) comply with the instructions from Pasir Panjang Control and the APO
craft at the scene;
(e) cease all underwater diving activities within a radius of 144 meters
from the perimeter of the working area during the periods of blasting;
(f) maintain a listening watch on VHF Channel 25;
(g) communicate with Pasir Panjang Control on VHF Channel 25 for
assistance, if required.

For information about operations in Singapore contact GAC Singapore at

DATE: December 05, 2013
PORT: Panama Canal
Manning requirements for transiting vessels

The Panama Canal Authority has issued a reminder of the manning
requirements on board vessels transiting through the waterway.

According to its Advisory to Shipping No.A-33-2013, as established in the
Maritime Regulations for the Operation of the Panama Canal, Chapter VI,
Section One, Article 102: “A vessel navigating the waters of the Panama
Canal shall be sufficiently manned to permit the safe handling of the
vessel.” Further, “The crew must meet the standards set forth in the
International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and
Watchkeeping for Seafarers, 1978/95 (STCW).”

Article 103.1 (Annex) requires transiting vessels to have sufficient seamen
forward and aft the handle lines during lockages, as well as when moored
temporarily to lock walls or inside a lock chamber.

The Canal requires transiting vessels to provide, as a minimum, one (1)
officer and two (2) seamen forward and after respectively. They are
expected to operate winches simultaneously in order to assist during
mooring operations, and handling of locks locomotive wires.

Article 108, Chapter VIII, established sailing and collision prevention
rules, specifically Rule 4 which establishes that “Every vessel shall at
all times while underway in the Canal and adjacent waters, maintain a
proper lookout by sight and hearing, as well as by all available means
appropriate in the prevailing circumstances and conditions, so as to make a
full appraisal of the situation… The person acting as lookout shall have
no other assigned duties and shall report immediately all relevant and
material information to the person in charge of the navigation of the

Non-compliance with these manning requirements may cause transit delays and
the assessment of additional charges.

For information about operations in Panama contact GAC-Wilford & McKay at

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