The Maritime Advocate–Issue 741


1. Liability for Defective Port Ramp in Washington State
2 .Latest on Piracy
3. Mediation or Arbitration in Shipping Disputes
4. Single Window Success
5. Hissing Sid and Fido
6. People and Places

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Note to Readers

A good old mixed edition here with a strong piece from BIFA on moving animals across the UK’s borders. FIATA are looking for a new head.

We enjoy producing the Avo and appreciate the advertisers and sponsors who support us. If you would like to reach the largest readership of its kind to say advertise a vacancy or to list a marshall’s admiralty ship sail, our 20 000 subscribed names from 120 countries will do the job. Our rates are pretty reasonable.

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1. Liability for Defective Port Ramp in Washington State

We are grateful to Dennis.L.Bryant’s Maritime Blog for his note on a subject of interest to many of our Readers.

The Supreme Court of the State of Washington ruled that under state law a property owner-landlord is liable for injuries that occur on its property when the lessee has exclusive possession of the property at the time of the incident but only priority use under the lease and the landlord has contracted to maintain and repair the premises. An employee of the Alaska Marine Highway System was severely injured when the passenger ramp at the Port of Bellingham collapsed. A significant factor in the collapse was the port’s failure to properly maintain the ramp. The court issued this opinion in response to a certified question from the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. Adamson v Port of Bellingham, No. 96187-5 (Wash., April 11, 2019)

2. Latest on Piracy

Our friends at the American Club have issued a new piracy circular for Members:-

The International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) International Maritime Bureau (IMB) has released its most recent report, Piracy and Armed Robbery Against Ships, for the period of January 1 to March 31, 2019. A summary of this quarterly update can be found at thethe ICC’s Commercial Crime Services website at persists.

While the report reveals fewer incidents of piracy and armed robbery against ships than the first three months of 2018, the ICC’s emphasizes the importance of information sharing and remaining ever vigilant in high risk areas. To gain free access to the quarterly and annual IMB piracy and armed robbery reports, Members can register at

Immediate access to these reports are granted upon completion of the online application.Members are encouraged to access these updates regularly in order to properly assess the risks associated with transiting certain sea areas. Members are also recommended to follow industry guidance as recommended in Best Management Practices to Deter Piracy and Enhance Maritime Security in the Red Sea, Gulf of Aden, Indian Ocean, and Arabian Sea (BMP5), Global Counter Piracy Guidance for Companies Masters and Seafarers, and Guidelines for Owners, Operators and Masters for protection against
piracy and armed robbery in the Gulf of Guinea region.

As a reminder, Members are encouraged to visit the Club’s website section on piracy and armed robbery at

which provides updated information on frequently asked questions on this subject, guidance for Members on the hiring of private maritime security companies, as well as relevant industry links on piracy and armed robbery.

3. Mediation or Aribitration in Shipping Disputes

That is the question asked by Lux Mediation who have drafted a short note which repays reading at:-

4. Single Window Success

Maria Dixon has passed us this piece by Paul Gunton which describes progress on shipping’s electronic front

A successful IMO project promoted by Norway to establish a maritime “single window” in Antigua and Barbuda has been completed – and the source code for the system will now be made available to other countries who need it. The system meets the requirements of the FAL Convention changes that became effective on 8 April under which national governments must now introduce electronic information exchange between ships and ports. Read more here:-

5. Hissing Sid and Fido

We are grateful to the Handy Shipping Guide for this article concerning the carriage of animals and Brexit. The subject is of considerable interest to the locals in these islands [editorial comment-Oh to be a male child in Italy or a dog in England]

Of the many contentious subjects which await the outcome of Brexit negotiations is the status of animals coming into and leaving the UK. Whilst thousands of UK citizens hold pet passports on behalf of their animals, the validity of these documents will be in question if the negotiations result in Britain being given ‘third country’ status. Now the British International Freight Association (BIFA) has further raised the matter of endangered animals, and indeed plants and products made from them, unless a settlement is agreed.

Firstly those pet passports. The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs has a web page devoted to possible changes. Note that, possible. As with all Brexit matters, at the time of writing everything depends on the final result. Obviously if the status quo is maintained the existing regulations will stay in place, if not we run into a web of expensive and awkward possibilities not least a 4 month delay after treatment starts before you can take an animal into Europe.

For shipments of animals as freight the restrictions will also tighten in a no-deal situation and with endangered species in mind BIFA recently organised an event to raise the matter which has resulted now in DEFRA issuing additional guidance on the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES). BIFA has published additional guidance which can be read here, and Robert Keen, Director General of the trade association that represents the UK’s freight forwarding sector, commented:

“One of the consequences of Brexit will be that freight forwarders and customs agents will become involved in regimes with which they may not have been previously. One such area is CITES, which is much wider ranging than people might have thought. BIFA Members expressed their concerns about how the movement of products covered by this regime, which are manufactured in the EU, using for example lizard, snake or crocodile skins, and currently freely imported into the UK, might be affected post-Brexit.

“BIFA sought greater guidance from DEFRA, which resulted in a well-attended regional meeting in Dover. Following that meeting, the government department issued further and broader guidance to be used in the event of the UK leaving the EU without a deal, which sets out how people who trade in, travel with, or handle the shipment of endangered animals, plants or products thereof would be affected.

“The guidance includes further information on the list of CITES-designated ports, including specific guidance for RoRo services. As a body that represents and lobbies on behalf of the UK freight forwarding sector, this is a perfect example of the work that BIFA does to assist its members, which are responsible for handling the shipment of a significant proportion of the UK’s visible import and export trade.”

6. People and Places

FIATA is seeking a New Director General

Details will be posted on the FIATA Website as to the appointed employment agency. The position will also be advertised in a widely circulated international trade journal.

According to the organisation “The changing face of global trade and emerging trends in e-commerce, will be high on the
agenda for the new Director General. For a person wishing to be at the cutting edge of international trade and logistics this role at FIATA will be that challenge”

To contact Stephen Morris, Acting Director General:-