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Hot Port News from GAC

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Panama Canal, Panama


Sulawesi, Indonesia

Canal transits four LNG vessels in one day
Wednesday, October 3, 2018, Panama Canal, Panama

The Panama Canal reached a new milestone [on Monday] after the successful transit of four liquefied natural gas (LNG) ships with beams of up to 160 feet (49 meters) in a single day through the Neopanamax Locks. With this milestone, the Panama Canal breaks the record set on April 17, 2018, when three LNG vessels transited through the waterway on the same day.

Ribera del Duero Knutsen with a cargo capacity of 173,000 m3 and Maran Gas Pericles with cargo capacity of 174,000 m3 transited northbound, while Torben Spirit with a cargo capacity of 174,000 m3 and Oceanic Breeze with a cargo capacity of 155,300 m3 transited southbound, facilitating international trade between customers in South Korea, Japan, Chile and the US Gulf Coast.

As a result of experience acquired with the transit of more than 4,200 Neopanamax vessels, the Panama Canal introduced changes to its Transit Reservation System to offer two slots per day to LNG vessels. These modifications have allowed to optimize the Expanded Canal’s capacity, in order to meet specific demands such as the transit of four LNG vessels.

The modifications — announced in August 2018 and that came into effect [on 1 October] — also allow lifting certain daylight restrictions for LNG vessels, as well as meetings between LNG vessels in opposite directions in Gatun Lake…

(For information about operations in the Panama Canal, contact GAC-Wilford & McKay at gac-wilfordmckay.panama@gac.com)

Source: Extracts from Panama Canal Authority Press Release dated 1 October 2018

Super Typhoon Kong Rey
Wednesday, October 3, 2018, Taiwan

Super Typhoon Kong Rey (30W) is expected to enter East China Sea between Okinawa and Taiwan on about the morning of Friday, 5 October.

The system is then expected to turn northward towards Korea over the weekend. The forecast track, however, is uncertain from the 5th and a track closer to China is possible.

Storms and high seas are expected off the coast of North Taiwan and East China from 5 October am (UTC) and there is a risk for storm and high seas in the Korea Strait and Yellow Sea from the morning of 6 October.

For information about operations in Taiwan, contact GAC Taiwan at taiwan@gac.com

Alert raised as volcano erupts
Wednesday, October 3, 2018, Sulawesi, Indonesia

Just five days after two strong earthquakes and a tsunami struck Central Sulawesi, the volcano Mount Soputan in the north of the island began erupting this morning (3 October).

Authorities raised the volcano’s status to Level III (Alert) on the 4-level national volcano alert system after a 4km column of ash went up at about 08:47 hours local time.

Residents are urged not the enter the area within a 4-6.5km radius around Mount Soputan, and riverbank settlements near the mountain have been warned of the potential for lava flows following rain. Volcanic ash is reported to be drifting to the west and northwest, which means it will not disrupt flights. The North Sulawesi Disaster Mitigation Agency has distributed masks to residents of the affected areas.

The volcanic eruption comes as authorities work to help people in Central Sulawesi affected by the earthquakes and tsunami that hit the towns of Donggala and Palu on Friday 28 September. Palu has suffered servere damage and it is estimated that more than 1,200 people have died as a result. Palu Airport is open for emergency evacuations and delivery of disaster relief materials.

For information about operations in Indonesia, contact Andhika GAC Indonesia at shipping.indonesia@gac.com

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