How to Prevent Collision During STS Operations

It was recently shared by SHIPOWNERS P&I Club, that a number of their members experience a large number of collision claims related to berthing operations during STS. The club had published on 27/01/2015 a bulletin with advises to members on procedures towards ensuring that STS approaching is carefully planned.


Nevertheless, the club still experiences a large number of incident claims and recently has shared with its members that a diligent planning should include the club recommendations that were outlined in the billeting of 27 January 2015.

Human element is the major factor during the organisation and assessment of an STS operation. By far most important is to follow industry guidelines while simultaneously making sure that all STS stakeholders evaluate and implement industry guidelines with due care. Regardless the level of preparedness a ship owner implements in an STS operation through training, procedures and evaluation, it is important to know that all three involved parties (both vessels and the POAC) act with the required level of preparedness.

The culture of being diligent in the organisation of an STS operation is implied through “Due Diligence” actions that need to be exercised, primarily from the shipping company followed by well-established and measurable procedures.

Vessel approaching during an STS operation is the first action towards implementing the operation but also denotes that “proper planning” has been effected prior to engaging to the physical process.

Online STS has issued a safety circular withsafety precautions which, when taken, help in avoiding a potential collision. Some of these precautions are outlined below:

  • Assess the Joint Plan provided by the Service Provider and POAC along with its risk assessment
  • Assess the Parallel body of the manoeuvring vessel and make sure that primary fenders are correctly positioned
  • Assess the position of the secondary fenders
  • Assess that the scheduled fenders are adequate for your STS operation
  • Assess that fenders are properly maintained according to industry and ISO requirements
  • In consecutive STS operations, where fenders have been placed on the constant heading vessel, attention is drawn to the RISK assessment that has been developed
  • Ensure that the participating (manoeuvring) vessel does not have any pending class conditions etc
  • Make sure that the crew is fatigue free, especially during consecutive STS operations
  • Conduct a relevant drill prior to the STS operation

More information can be found in onlineSTS Safety Circular 18 Steps To Prevent a Collision During Manoeuvring for a Ship-To-Ship Transfer Operation.

Transport Canada Fuel Oil Sulphur Content Inspections

Effective August 22, 2016, Transport Canada Marine Safety Inspectors will verify compliance with the 0.10% sulphur content requirements for fuel oil used on board ships operating within the Canadian jurisdiction of the North American Emission Control Area through on-site fuel sampling and testing.


Since January 1, 2015, the sulphur content of marine fuel used on board a vessel must not exceed 0.10% by mass within the Canadian jurisdiction of the NA-ECA, as set out in Section 111 of the Regulations. The NA-ECA standard should provide important benefits to Canada.  It is expected to result in a more than 90% decline in sulphur oxide emissions from vessels.

Since most vessels must use more expensive low sulphur fuel oil to comply with these standards compared to vessels operating outside of ECAs under MARPOL, Transport Canada will rigorously monitor vessels to ensure they are complying with the NA-ECA standards.

Transport Canada will use portable fuel analyzers onboard vessels to measure the sulphur content of its fuel oil to verify compliance with the NA-ECA standard. Test results will help inspectors make informed decisions on the next enforcement steps during the course of the inspection.

During an inspection of a vessel, a Marine Safety Inspector may require a sample of fuel from the engine’s fuel system and perform an analysis of the fuel sample using a fuel analyzer.

Depending on the results of the analysis, the inspector may also forward the samples to an accredited laboratory to confirm compliance with the fuel oil sulphur content requirements. If the analyzer is not available, the inspector may forward the fuel sample directly to the laboratory for analysis.

The vessel’s authorized representative will be informed of the analytical results. In addition, Transport Canada will share the results with industry stakeholders, other maritime administrations and the International Maritime Organization, but will make data on individual ships anonymous.

The Ship Safety Bulletin No. 08/2016, is available at:


The “Bao Yue”: Implications of failure to collect the cargo at the discharge port

In the recent English High Court case of Sang Stone Hamoon Jonoub Co Ltd v. Baoyue Shipping Co. Ltd. ([2015] EWHC 2288 Comm), Mr Justice Males provided direction on the potential liability of a cargo owner to the shipowner where the first does not take delivery of the cargo and the recompense such shipowner may expect in return. In this case, the unpaid FOB seller of the goods, who held the bill of lading (BL), was found liable to the shipowner for storage charges greater than the value of the unpaid cargo. The shipowner successfully defended a claim for unlawful conversion following storage of cargo that had not been collected within a reasonable time. Under English law, in brief terms, conversion of cargo is an act of dealing with that cargo in a way that is inconsistent with the cargo owner’s rights, such that the cargo owner is deprived of the use or possession of the cargo.

2016.06.07 - The Bao Yue

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The Lease As An Alternative Structure For Financing Ships

2016.06.06 - The Lease As An Alternative Structure For Financing Ships

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ECSA Position Paper on Marine Litter

The European Community Shipowners’ Associations (ECSA) notes with alarm the growing evidence of the harmful effects of marine litter on marine biodiversity and the environment. At the global scale, it is estimated that nearly 80 per cent of marine litter originates from land-based sources. The rest originates from sea-based sources, including maritime transport which accounts only for a part of it.

2015.12.16 - ECSA Position Paper on Marine Litter

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A Challenging Period Ahead

This article initially appeared in IMO News Issue 4, 2015 and is reproduced here with the organization’s and author’s kind permission.

When I took office as Secretary-General in 2012 I highlighted a number of challenges that would face IMO in the coming years. These included the difficult financial situation for Member Governments after the economic downturn; combating piracy; the debate on greenhouse gas emissions as well as on ballast water management; the IMO Member State Audit Scheme; preparation of a new set of international rules for navigation in the Polar regions; sustainable financing for the World Maritime University and its future operation; and the need to review and strengthen the Organization’s technical cooperation and capacity-building efforts.

2015.12.13 - A Challenging Period Ahead

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Pooling Agreements

In this short note the authors consider whether the entry of a ship into a pool can be regarded by financial investors (lessors and lenders) as a reasonable alternative to employment on time charter.

2015.11.15 - Pooling Agreements

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PSC Report for Q3 2015

The third quarter of 2015 the PSC MoU with the highest detention ratio (7.83%) was that of Mediterranean MoU, an increase which is mainly attributed to the increased detention ratio of general cargo ships. After the Mediterranean MoU, the Indian Ocean MoU was the second MoU with increased detention ratio (4.13%), followed by Paris MoU (3.61%) and Black Sea MoU (3.15%). In comparison to the previous quarter of the year the detention ratio of Tokyo MoU was decreased to 2.72%.

2015.10.26 - PSC Quarterly Report 2015 Q3 Figure 01

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Riyadh MoU CIC on Safety of Navigation

Riyadh MoU is launching a Concentrated Inspection Campaign (CIC) based on Safety of Navigation, SOLAS Chapter V. The campaign period will be commenced from 1st October 2015 and it will be held for 3 months, ending on 31st December 2015.

2015.10.01 Riyadh MoU CIC on Safety of Navigation

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Crew familiarization for Enclosed Space Entry CIC

A Port State Control (PSC) Concentrated Inspection Campaign (CIC) is being carried out from September up until November 2015 in Paris MoUTokyo MoUBlack Sea MoU, Indian Ocean MoU and Mediterranean MoU. It is expected that the Tokyo and Paris MoUs will carry out approximately 10,000 inspections during the CIC.

2015.08.030 - Crew familiarization for Enclosed Space Entry CIC

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