The Maritime Advocate–Issue 836


1. Diligent on human rights
2. Our essential ocean
3. Return to leasing
4. UK port services
5. Compulsory mediation
6. Confined spaces
7. Always means always
8. Border controls
9. Solar ships
10. Dancing in the craters
11. Collision report
12. Safety compliance
13. Dangerous cargoes

Notices & Miscellany

Readers’ responses to our articles are very welcome and, where suitable, will be reproduced. Write to:

1. Diligent on human rights

By Michael Grey

There is a great deal of righteousness flowing like a river around the corporate world at present, as everyone flaunts their Environmental, Social and Governance policies to demonstrate their credibility as people with whom you should do business. ESG seems to have rather taken over from efficiency, quality and price as the most important criteria surrounding a purchase of goods or services.

It has crept up on us quite rapidly, pushed by over-promoted HR types, who have squeezed their way into corporate management, through a combination of sharp elbows and a facility with meaningless jargon.  It seems to have emerged from the financial world, as it attempted to rehabilitate itself after the shame and degradation of the 2008 crash, but has now spread into all sorts of sectors, as companies seek to assure the world of their diversity, inclusion and huge enthusiasm for the works of Greta Thunberg. You sense, however,with the “de-banking” scandal and a backlash against net zero and the cancellation of women by strident minorities, that all this cultish behaviour might have gone too far.

We have certainly come a long way since people in our industry were quietly outraged by some Norwegian finance house letting it be known that only “green” ships would henceforth qualify for loans and mortgages against them. Some went so far as to suggest that these holier-than-thou Scandinavians were only bankers and technically unqualified to judge on the green-ness of a newbuilding and that their only job was to assess the financial validity of the business plan. Sadly, they probably would not make such views public today.

“No seafarers were harmed in the transport of these products.”  Even the daftest HR guru, in these mad times, would not suggest such an advertisement, but reality tells us that the safety and human rights of seafarers, running the ships that feed and fuel the world, are seldom to the fore as the ESG ratings are considered. You only have to recall the way seafarers found themselves treated during the pandemic, and at current complaints about the lack of shore leave in so many places, to realise that while there may be shipping companies which go that extra mile for their employees, plenty of others wouldn’t even cross the road.

The International Transport Workers’ Federation, perhaps because they have seen the many corporate public pronunciations of ESG enthusiasm, has now come up with the suggestion that the big brands ought to be rated on their HRDD – Human Rights Due Diligence. The idea that the welfare of seagoing transport workers should be part of an auditable package is an interesting one, although the measure is currently only guidance and thus can be taken – or left.

It is surely not unreasonable, although on the wilder shores of this international industry, such a notion would occasion only howls of derisive laughter.  But in an industry where the best players have embraced their responsibilities to the environment, and wax lyrically about their inclusive and diverse policies, an acknowledgement of the human rights of this unseen and largely unheard workforce might well resonate. Not with the public, perhaps, which mostly believes that some sort of unseen agency transports their imports and exports, but as an example that might spread from the big brands and reputable companies to the wider world. Would it cost much? In that it is asking people to do something that is manifestly right and that public relations benefits might accrue from such a move, what would be the downside?

Sadly, the cynic in me suggests that without the thrust of public opinion, leveraged by lobbies, such guidance might well fall on stony ground. I recall that some years ago there was a brave, small-scale attempt by the officers’ union and the Mission to Seafarers to interest the Fairtrade organisation to extend their remit to the “fair sea transport” of goods. I was present at the meeting and it was clear that the well-meaning representatives of the estimable body   failed to understand anything about seafaring conditions and how they might be incorporated. And in any case, it is actions, not some bold slogans about diversity and inclusion, which ultimately matter most. The “mission statement” is meaningless without genuine belief and proper execution. Perhaps strengthening and properly implementing the Maritime Labour Convention would be a vehicle in which the brands could believe.

Michael Grey is former editor of Lloyd’s List

2. Our essential ocean

Michael Grey writes “Here is a book about the ocean which I can honestly say I wished had been on my bookshelf when I was spending my working life upon its surface. In the “Blue Machine – How the ocean shapes our world” Helen Czerski takes the ocean as a whole and tells her readers just how inter-related its constituent parts, its behaviour and vast influence are upon life here on earth. A physicist, who is a brilliant presenter of difficult scientific concepts on television and professionally engaged in the study of bubbles, she brings to this huge subject a delight and enthusiasm that encourages us all to think about this watery mass in a different way.

“Mariners learn about the currents and weather systems that sweep around the world, even if we are not so dependent upon them as our sail-driven forebears. Czerski takes us deep into the intricate mixing and mingling below the surface which are the integral parts of the ocean engine. She describes the “messengers, passengers and voyagers” that constitute life in the oceans and travel on its currents. She also demonstrates, along with friends in Polynesia, that we can learn a lot from traditional attitudes to the ocean. Best of all, amid the daily messages of environmental doom that crowd our media, she doesn’t preach or hector, but uses gentle persuasion.”

Blue Machine by Helen Czerski ISBN 9781911709107 Transworld Publishers £20.00

3. Return to leasing

A downturn in trade and mass disposal of surplus equipment will lead to a 2% contraction in the global container equipment pool in 2023. But a recovery thereafter will drive expansion of the fleet with most of this investment coming from lessors, raising newbuild values, per diems and cash returns, says Drewry in Container Census & Leasing and Equipment Forecaster.

Drewry expects the global pool of container equipment to contract by 2% in 2023 as trade growth remains weak and owners dispose of more equipment. In 2023, Drewry anticipates global container handling activity to increase by just 1% to 870.7m TEU. While inflation remains stubbornly high in several economies, it is generally in decline and personal consumption and corporate investment in many countries are expected to increase through 2H23.

“Nonetheless, there are still too many containers in the global pool than needed to support existing and short-term trading prospects and vessel slot operating capacity. Consequently, lessors and transport operators remain focused on adjusting their fleet according to current market conditions to improve utilisation rates.”

In the second quarter of this year, lessors’ box utilisation levels slipped to 97%, the lowest level since 3Q20 when the world was still only just recovering from economic lockdown. This means that sales of used boxes to the secondary market will remain high in the second half of 2023 as owners shed surplus and ageing equipment, while the appetite for ordering new containers will be weak. Total production this year is unlikely to exceed 1.9m TEU, its lowest level in 14 years.

Thereafter, newbuild box production is forecast to recover on the back of rising containerised trading volumes, an increasing need by owners to replace ageing containers and record deliveries of ULCV and large neo-Panamax-class ships. By 2027, Drewry projects that the global pool of containers will total over 56 mteu, representing average annual growth of around 3%.

While lessors will see their share of the market fall again this year, it is expected to recover from 2024 as deteriorating liner profitability drives carriers back to the leasing market. By the end 2027 the sector is expected to control over 52% of the fleet, according to Drewry projections.

4. UK port services

The British Ports Association has welcomed the news that the legislation on port services provision will be revoked in the UK by the end of the year. It suggests the move will help maintain the competitiveness of British ports and help keep a flexible and open system for port users.

Despite many of the customs and border challenges the UK ports sector has faced since the UK’s departure from the EU, this is one development that can be viewed as a genuine Brexit dividend, the association believes.

The legislation was introduced at the tail end of the UK’s membership of the European Union and the Department for Transport has confirmed it will be revoked under the recently passed Retained UK Law Act. This will enable UK ports to continue to use British rules on governance and maintain their existing flexible regimes and arrangements with service providers.

Commenting Richard Ballantyne, CEO of the British Ports Association, which represents ports that collectively facilitate 86% seaborne trade including most of the operators covered by the rules, said; “This is excellent news. for the UK maritime industry as the PSR created an inflexible system with additional costs for ports and shippers. The announcement means our industry can continue to operate without the unsuitable rules that could have delayed and frustrated valued port users and service providers. Unlike other ports communities our industry is underpinned by financial, strategic and regulatory independence as well as a strong element of competition and customer service. These rules were originally devised to suit other European port sectors where there was an absence of similar rules but with more state involvement. We have therefore long since maintained that they are not suitable in the UK. Indeed we already have clear and well understood existing rules and arrangements in place, which results in port users in Britain being served by a modern and dynamic customer facing ports sector.”

5.Compulsory mediation

Moya Clifford of Hill Dickinson has highlighted a move towards compulsory mediation in the UK. The Ministry of Justice (MoJ) has recently confirmed that mediation will become compulsory for civil claims valued at up to £10,000 – with parties facing costs sanctions or a strike-out if they fail to engage in the mediation process. The announcement follows on from a consultation that the Ministry of Justice commenced in 2022. The reform will see mediation become a standard step in the vast majority of small claims proceedings. The success of ‘remote’ mediations during the Covid crisis appears to have accelerated the proposals.

It is anticipated that initially compulsory mediation will apply only to specified money claims (currently 80% of small claims) but it will eventually be rolled out to all small claims issued under the standard part 7 procedure of the Civil Procedure Rules.

For the full story see:

Litigation funding
A recent Supreme Court decision in PACCAR Inc & Ors v Competition Appeal Tribunal & Ors [2023] UKSC 28 has confirmed that litigation funding agreements are agreements falling within the statutory definition of damages-based agreements (DBAs) and need to satisfy the statutory conditions for DBAs failing which they are unenforceable. Moya Clifford looks at the rationale for, and implications of, the decision for litigation funders and parties using such arrangements to fund their claims.

Read more

6. Confined spaces  

International freight transport insurer TT Club is seeking to draw attention to the life-threatening hazards caused by enclosed and confined spaces prevalent throughout the global supply chain.  Toxic gases produced by some cargoes as well as leakages, residual fumigants and other causes of a reduced oxygen environment are the chief problems, with 60% of fatalities suffered by would-be rescuers.

Confined or enclosed spaces are common in the supply chain industry. Such spaces exist across all freight modalities; from tank containers to cargo hold stairwells and holds, to road tankers and sealed cargo units.  A lack of understanding of the danger present may have fatal consequences.

Without sufficient oxygen the human body starts to shut down very quickly. Any rescue operations are therefore time critical. The primary cause of reduced oxygen levels is the increased presence of other gases, such as carbon dioxide. This may arise from rusting of the ship’s structure or metal cargoes, oxidation of cargoes such as coal or the decomposition of biodegradable cargoes, for example fish meal, logs, bark, or wood pellets.   All these lead to carbon dioxide – and potentially other gases – being released, simultaneously depleting the oxygen. Other associated hazards include flammable or toxic vapours from leaking cargoes or leaking pipes or hoses.

Peregrine Storrs-Fox, Risk Management Director at TT explains that a lack of awareness of these often hidden dangers is surprisingly high. “The key risk is that workers may not readily recognise spaces that could present danger,” he states.  “The cargo hold of a ship is a leading example, but containers and other cargo transport units pose similar risks; there may be a lack of knowledge of the cargo packed or whether fumigants have been used. Similarly, tanks units, whether a road barrel or tank container, certainly qualify as enclosed spaces.”

The speed with which the effects of oxygen depletion can become debilitating require thorough and regular communication to ensure that operatives understand the risks.  When entering a lethal space there are no obvious red flags. In terms of symptoms there are no warning signs such as coughing or feeling breathless or nauseous.  An individual can pass out without having the opportunity to raise an alarm or escape.

The quick onset and catastrophic nature of these symptoms often leads to others rushing to the aid of the casualty, unaware of the reason for their collapse. Statistically, over 60% of fatalities connected to confined and enclosed spaces are suffered by would be rescuers.

“The silent and invisible nature of this killer emphasises the importance of raising awareness of the risk,” stresses Storrs-Fox.  “Developing and undertaking drills to practice rescues are crucial steps in mitigating the risks, as are a number of other strategies including risk assessments of working in potentially hazardous spaces, discouraging short cuts in work practices and testing, monitoring and venting air in confined areas.”

While not exhaustive, TT has developed a checklist of risk mitigation strategies that can be applied across all modes, whether on land or at sea.

This can be accessed HERE

7. Always means always

Brian Perrott and Lee Forsyth of HFW have put pen to paper on the issue of time taken for hull cleaning.

The commercial court had to decide whether owners were entitled to claim the hire rate under a time charter for the time used for cleaning a vessel’s hull after the charterers redelivered it. The relevant provision was as follows:

“Owners not to be responsible for any decrease in speed/increase in consumption of the vessel…cause[d] by charterers staying in ports exceeding 25 days trading in tropical and 30 days if in non-tropical waters. In such a case, underwater cleaning of hull…to be done at first workable opportunity and always at charterers’ time and expense…”

Receivers had rejected the cargo and the vessel remained idle in Brazil for at least 42 days so the provision was engaged. The vessel was redelivered to the owners following completion of discharge without the charterers undertaking cleaning of the hull, despite the owners’ requests.

Charterers argued that since cleaning occurred after redelivery, the owners’ claim was confined to damages for loss of time – for example, by proving that the cleaning prevented the vessel being further chartered – and charterers did not automatically have to pay for the time associated with underwater cleaning (as a debt claim).

The Court stated that: “Cleaning is to be “always at charterers’ time”, which must mean that the charterers must always pay for the time associated with underwater cleaning. To my mind the word “always” must be given effect…
What the clause requires is that the cleaning be at the charterers’ time and expense. This is not a charterparty expressly stating that underwater cleaning must be undertaken before the vessel is redelivered to the owners.
…The vessel can be redelivered unclean, but in that case the charterers must compensate the owners at the hire rate for the time when cleaning is undertaken.”

The Court adopted a sensible interpretation, taking into account the words of the clause. Charterers should have insisted on different wording if they did not wish to “always” pay for underwater cleaning in the relevant circumstances.

Smart Gain Shipping Co. Ltd. v Langlois Enterprises Ltd [2023] EWHC 1683

8. Border controls

The British Ports Association has responded to reports in the press that the UK Government is set to delay the introduction of new post-Brexit border controls.

Mark Simmonds, Director of Policy at the British Ports Association said: “Many ports have built expensive new border infrastructure at significant expense which will require ongoing upkeep. The investment and operation of these new posts is to be paid for through charges on users, which for the fifth time will now be delayed.

“The ports industry will always champion the removal of trade barriers, but Ministers have marched most of the industry up a very expensive hill and if the costs for new border posts will not be recoverable from users, government should cover the expense and release the land and facilities back for more productive use.

“The British Ports Association is disappointed that industry learns of important changes to new border processes from the newspapers.”

9. Solar ships

Indian Register of Shipping and Madhya Pradesh Urja Vikas Nigam have signed an MOU on classification and certification of Solar-Electric boats. This initiative will strengthen the use of renewables with an overall aim to promote sustainability.

Madhya Pradesh Urja Vikas Nigam is a corporation established by the Government of Madhya Pradesh as the nodal agency for implementing various programmes and policies of the Government of India as well as State Government in renewable energy sector.

The scope of the MOU covers technical review of the specifications, inspection during construction and certification of material, components, and equipment. IRS will also provide other technical services including review of documents as well as training to MPUVNL personnel.

Chairman of MPUVNL Shri. Giriraj Dandotiya stated ‘The partnership will benefit us immensely drawing from subject matter expertise of IRS, our trustworthy partners, in successful completion of all planned project’.

Shri. Vijay Arora, managing director of IRS said: “We are pleased to partner with MPUVNL with an aim to provide high quality technical services to enhance the use of renewable energy. We sincerely thank and appreciate the efforts of Chairman – MPUVNL, Shri. Giriraj Dandotiya who was instrumental in this collaboration from conceptualisation to finalisation of the MOU. We also thankfully acknowledge contributions from all senior officials at MPUVNL.”

Managing Director of MPUVNL, Shri. Karamveer Sharma, IAS, said “Through this MOU we will be able to achieve the desired solar potential using the services of a highly reputed technical body such as IRS.’

10. Dancing in the craters

A well-known maritime lawyer is using music to raise vital funds and awareness for Ukraine by releasing a song and video highlighting the impact of the war from a child’s perspective.

Julian Clark, Vice President and Senior Legal Adviser of Gard (UK), was inspired to write the song, titled Putin’s War, after hosting two Ukrainian refugee families in his UK home.

Now Julian is releasing the song and video for downloading as part of his new fund-raising campaign entitled Dancing In the Craters which is available to view on Love Street’s You Tube page: “Putin`s War – (dancing in the craters)” – YouTube

The song was recorded by Julian’s rock band Love Street at Peter Gabriel’s   Real World Studio and produced by award winning producer George Shilling. It includes a  video produced by Ukrainian film producer Angelina Bakaliar who weaves real-life footage with graphics.

Proceeds from the song’s sales are being shared between international maritime charity Stella Maris, which is supporting displaced Ukrainian seafarers and their families, and Caritas Ukraine which provides humanitarian support in the country.

While any donation is welcome, the campaign says £21 will buy a food box to feed a Ukrainian family for one week.

Donations to the Dancing in the Craters fundraising campaign are via its Just Giving page:

11. Collision report

Hong Kong Merchant Shipping has issued an information note on a recent collision resulting in the capsize of the general cargo vessel and the death of all six crew members.

The Hong Kong-registered container vessel collided with a China-licensed general cargo vessel at the entrance of the Yangtze River when the container vessel was en route from Shanghai to Zhoushan. At the time of the collision, the container vessel was accelerating its speed and intended to enter the deep-water channel of the Yangtze River estuary under the pilotage of a licensed pilot. The general cargo vessel, being the give way vessel in the accident, suddenly turned to its right, possibly with the intention of overtaking the container vessel by crossing its bow as soon as possible. Finally, the general cargo vessel collided with the container vessel, resulting in the capsize of the general cargo vessel and the death of all six crew members on board but only a few scratches left at the bulbous bow of the container vessel.

The investigation revealed that the contributory factors of the accident were as follows:
Both the container vessel and the general cargo vessel, when navigating in the Yangtze River, failed to follow the following rules and regulations under the Shanghai Water Safety Supervision Rules, Regulations on the Ship Routing System for the Shanghai Section of the Yangtze River and Crew Regulations issued by the local Administration:

(i) both vessels failed to navigate carefully;
(ii) the general cargo vessel impeded the safe passage of the container vessel, failed to fulfil the obligation to avoid heavily laden vessels, failed to maintain a watch of the VHF channel 71 to receive safety messages and warnings from the VTS and her master was not on duty at the bridge although the channel was narrow and the traffic was dense;
(iii) the container vessel did not take appropriate actions to avoid a collision when the give way vessel (i.e., the general cargo vessel) failed to take appropriate avoiding actions.

The container vessel failed to follow the requirements of Rule 5 (Look-out) of the Convention on the International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea, 1972 (COLREGs) i.e. “to maintain a proper look-out by sight and hearing at all times and by all available means appropriate in the prevailing circumstances and conditions so as to make a full appraisal of the situation and of the risk of collision”.

The master of the container vessel failed to carry out an effective exchange of information regarding the safety of the navigation when the pilot was on board and neither did he question, alert or correct the manoeuvring instructions taken, which did not comply with the requirements of the resource management of the bridge and “Watchkeeping arrangements and principles to be observed” in Part 4-1, Chapter VIII/2, Part A of STCW Code (the STCW Code). Lessons Learnt

In order to avoid recurrence of similar accidents during operation in the future, the ship management company, all masters, officers, and crew members should note items listed above. The officers on navigational watch shall at all times maintain a proper look-out to comply with the requirements of Rule 5 of COLREGS (Look-out); and when a vessel is arriving or leaving a port under the pilotage of a pilot, the master and the pilot shall properly exchange information regarding passage plan, local conditions and the ship’s characteristics, and the master and/or the officer in charge of the navigational watch shall cooperate closely with the pilot and maintain an accurate check on the ship’s position and movement, to meet the requirements of paragraph 49 of the STCW Code.

The note added that  if in any doubt as to the pilot’s actions or intentions, “the officer in charge of the navigational watch shall seek clarification from the pilot and shall notify the master immediately and take whatever action is necessary if doubt still exists before the master arrives, to meet the requirements of paragraph 50 of the STCW Code; and (d) the ship management company shall ensure effective implementation of the shipboard Safety Management System and enhance training on bridge resources and team management for achieving effective management and teamwork to reduce the risk of human error and failure to detect faults in a timely manner.”

12. Safety compliance

Josh Finch and Neil Dalus of the TT Club have been looking at safety issues and say that compliance with regulations and related requirements is a given for all businesses. Failure to comply will place the  business in an extremely difficult position, should a serious incident occur. However, adherence with the law should be seen as the baseline in the context of developing a mature safety culture. Furthermore, achieving the minimum may not ultimately be good enough for  business.

Inevitably, there are a range of factors that need to be taken into account in developing an appropriate safety culture for any business. Not least, the underlying environment, including corporate resources and operational throughput, will fundamentally impact the aspirations that drive the business.

As so often is the case, this requires reflection and assessment – preferably a ‘360 degree’ process that takes into consideration the stakeholder universe. Such a comprehensive assessment of the existing safety culture will provide a baseline understanding of the organisation’s strengths, weaknesses, and areas for improvement. For further details see the TT Club website.

13.  Dangerous cargoes

Ince’s Paul Crane and Reema Shour have been considering the issue of dangerous cargoes in one of the law firm’s online insights (see

In its Shipping and Safety Review 2023, Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty reported that the second top cause of loss of vessels in 2022 was fire or explosion. There were 209 ship fires reported during 2022, the highest in a decade and 17% more than in 2021. Of those fires, 13 occurred on car carriers.   Fire was also reportedly the most expensive cause of marine insurance claims.

According to the Allianz report, a combination of causes is increasing the risk of fires at sea. Decarbonization, while a positive global development, has led to new types of cargo such as electric vehicles (EVs) and the prevalence of lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries which pose a growing risk for container shipping and car carriers. The Li-ion market is expected to grow by over 30% annually over the next decade. Nearly 10% of global car sales were electric in 2021, four times the market share in 2019.

In March 2023, the European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) published its CARGOSAFE study, which assesses the risks associated with fires on container ships and evaluates prevention, detection, firefighting, and containment measures. The study indicated that the main cargo types identified as responsible for a large share of cargo fire accidents included Li-ion batteries.

Furthermore, the cause of many cargo fires can be attributed to mis-declared dangerous goods. By way of example, in August 2021, a container loaded with discarded Li-ion batteries, intended to be loaded on board a container ship bound for China, caught fire whilst being transported to the port. The bill of lading listed “computer parts,” not Li-ion batteries. The Cargo Incident Notification System (CINS) indicates that nearly 25% of all serious incidents onboard container ships can be attributed to mis-declared cargo.

One of the main hazards of Li-ion batteries is ‘thermal runaway’, rapid, uncontrolled self-heating that can lead to fire and can cause an explosion. The main causes of Li-ion fires are said to be defective manufacturing or damaged battery cells or devices, over-charging, and short-circuiting. Fires in EVs with Li-ion batteries are hotter, take longer to extinguish, and can spontaneously reignite. They can also release poisonous, irritating or corrosive gases that cause an explosion in a confined space.

The article explores both past casualty incidents, legal issues and comment. For the full story go to the link above.

Notices & Miscellany

Casualty comment

Stephen Spark made the following comment on Michael Grey’s discussion piece in the last edition.

“In his assessment of the Wakashio case (Issue 835), Michael Grey considered only what took place on the bridge. A “navigational shambles” it surely was, but what about the shambles on shore?

“Inexcusable failures by the coastal state, Mauritius, turned a potential grounding into an inevitable major incident. Thanks to poor training, inflexibility and convoluted lines of communication, the National Coast Guard proved incapable of communicating with the ship (as the Panama report notes) or responding effectively to the unfolding disaster. The country’s Merchant Shipping Act requires a wreck to be boarded, and evidence secured, at the earliest safe opportunity, but it was many days before any attempt was made to obtain the VDR and other material. The pollution response plan was completely inadequate and only the intervention of neighbouring Réunion prevented the environmental and social damage being even worse.

“As local people came together to create booms from plastic bottles and cane trash and scooped up oil with their bare hands, the government dithered and hindered investigations by the flag state (the timeline is on pages 14-23 of the report). That report was delayed because Panama, like the rest of us, is still waiting for vital data from Wakashio’s VDR, which Mauritius has refused to hand over.

“After the accident, at the height of the Covid pandemic and presumably at considerable expense, the JTSB [Japan Transport Safety Board] sent over a five-strong team to conduct its own investigation. Again, there’s no report because the VDR’s video and sound recordings are unavailable.

“Mauritius itself held a protracted inquiry before a Court of Investigation, but last December, just before Christmas, the Mauritian Parliament was told its conclusions would not be made public.

“There are white lists, grey lists and black lists for flag states. Perhaps it’s time to introduce the same for coastal states.

“Panama only released its report because a journalist asked them to. It’s surely our responsibility to exert pressure on Mauritius to release the VDR data and its Court of Investigation report. Only then will we understand the accident’s root causes on board and on shore.”

TT Club appointments

Underlining TT’s on-going dedication to providing such valuable loss prevention guidance, the Club has announced the commitment of additional resources to its team.  Josh Finch has joined as Logistics Risk Manager and Neil Dalus becomes EMEA Risk Assessment Manager. (See item 12).

BPA awards

The British Ports Association is seeking the best of the UK ports industry to enter its BPA Awards.

There will be four awards this year.

Community Impact Award

•    The Community Impact Award will be awarded to one port that has made a significant and positive difference in its local community. This award honours ports that engage with and contribute to the social, economic, and cultural development of the regions they serve. This could be by addressing a particular issue, campaigning for progressive change, contributing to job creation and skill development, or collaborating with local charities.

Sustainability Award

•    The Sustainability Award will be awarded to one port that has taken major steps to become more sustainable and worked to reduce its carbon footprint. Applicants will not be assessed on total emissions reduced, but more on the pace of change, concrete action, and whether there is a full embrace of sustainability across all port activities. Ports should show the strategic direction of their sustainability practices and demonstrate the tangible benefits of investments/projects/initiatives in creating a more sustainable port.

Outstanding Achievement Award

•    The Outstanding Achievement Award will recognise one individual who best embodies the qualities and talents of the UK ports sector. This Award will celebrate someone that has shown selflessness in challenging times, visionary leadership, the ability to overcome tremendous odds, or an inspiring changemaker that has left a positive impact on their port or the wider industry.

Skills Award

•    The Skills Award will be awarded to one port that has demonstrated dedication to skills development and workforce empowerment. The award will celebrate a port that has implemented effective and innovative training programmes, promoted professional growth, and/or contributed to cultivating future talent in the maritime industry.

The awards are open to all ports. Applications will be independently judged by a diverse group of industry leaders and awarded at the BPA Gala Dinner on Thursday 19 October, as part of the BPA Conference 2023 Programme.

The deadline for submissions is 11 September. Please email with your entry.

UK Chamber of Shipping events

Tuesday 3rd & Wednesday 4th October 09.30 – 13.00


Sponsored by Bureau Veritas, Shell, Fathom Safety, UK P&I and Maritime Skills Academy

The theme for this year’s one and a half day conference will be “Establishing a Learning Culture”, with interactive presentations from experts inside and outside the maritime sector.

The four pillars of Together in Safety – leadership, incident prevention, wellbeing and care and collaboration – will be the sub-themes for the conference.

For More Information & Bookings

Thursday 2nd November 2023, 11.30am – 3.30pm

Hosted at the Harbour Hotel is Southampton, approximately 100 guests from the shipping industry will have the opportunity to hear from the Chamber’s President and Senior Management team at a pre-lunch Q&A session, network over a few glasses of fizz and enjoy a delicious three-course meal.

This event was attended by the likes of Condor Ferries, Red Funnel, Carnival, Wightlink, MCA, V., Cemex, Saga Cruises, LR, P&O and Svitzer in November 2022.

For More Information & Bookings

Tanker safety guide

ICS says the new edition of Tanker Safety Guide (Liquefied Gas) can now be pre-ordered.  Developed and reviewed by senior industry experts with direct experience in the field, this comprehensive guide been presented in a user-friendly and modernised format, with a significant upgrade in the visual representation of technical information, including infographics and flow diagrams.

This new guide is priced at £470 and is available in print and ebook. Find out more and order from ICS Publications.

Please notify the Editor of your appointments, promotions, new office openings and other important happenings:

And finally,

(With thanks to Paul Dixon)

These useful quotes are from employee performance evaluations:

Since my last report, this employee has reached rock bottom and has started to dig.
I would not allow this employee to breed.
This employee is really not so much of a has-been but more of a definite won’t-be.
Works well when under constant supervision and cornered like a rat in a trap.
He would be out of his depth in a parking lot puddle.
This young lady has delusions of adequacy.
He sets low personal standards and then consistently fails to achieve them.
This employee is depriving a village somewhere of an idiot.
This employee should go far, and the sooner he starts, the better.
Got a full six-pack but lacks the plastic thing to hold it all together.
He has been working with glue too much.
He would argue with a signpost.
He brings a lot of joy whenever he leaves the room.
When his IQ reaches 50, he should sell.
If you see two people talking, and one looks bored, he is the other one.
A photographic memory but with the lens covered glued on.
Donated his brain to science before he was done using it.
Gates are down, the lights are flashing but the train is not coming.
Has two brains: one is lost and the other is out looking for it.
If he were any more stupid, he would have to be watered twice a week.
If you give him a penny for his thoughts, you would get change.
If you stand close enough to him, you can hear the ocean.
Some drink from the fountain of knowledge; he only gargled.
Takes him two hours to watch 60 Minutes.

Thanks for Reading the Maritime Advocate online

Maritime Advocate Online is a fortnightly digest of news and views on the maritime industries, with particular reference to legal issues and dispute resolution. It is published to over 20,000 individual subscribers each week and republished within firms and organisations all over the maritime world. It is the largest publication of its kind. We estimate it goes to around 60,000 readers in over 120 countries.


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