Apr 16, 2014
A South Korean ship with hundreds of passengers on board has sunk off the country's southwestern coast. Among the passengers, around 320 were students who were traveling with several teachers to the resort island of Jeju. In total there were 447 passengers and 27 crew on the ferry, a total of 474 people. The Coast Guard has confirmed that there is at least two deaths.
The distress signal was received from the ferry, identified as the Sewol, around 9 AM (local time). The South Korean Ministry of Security and Public Administration has confirmed that 180 passengers have been rescued.
One student said that he heard a loud bump, which was quickly followed by the ship beginning to sink. He jumped into the sea before swimming to a rescue vessel. The ship listed badly, leading to authorities ordering all remaining on the stricken ship to jump into the sea. The water is 12.6 degrees centigrade (55 degrees Fahrenheit). The ferry is now almost completely submerged.
Apr 4, 2014
Nils-Erik Eklund, former CEO of Viking Line, has been awarded with the Maritime Theme Prize 2014. The prize is awarded to a person who has worked to improve conditions for the maritime sector, contributed to enhance appreciation of the sector, developed cooperation within the sector and furthered external visibility of the maritime sector. The winner is selected by a jury consisting of seven representatives from various maritime organizations in Finland.
Nils-Erik Eklund has had a long career within the Finnish maritime sector, dating back to 1963 when he worked as a washer-up on the vessel Ålandsfärjan. He became CEO of Viking Line in 1990, a position he held until 2010.
“I had the opportunity to work with highly competent and pleasant people during my 20 years as CEO of Viking Line. I am accepting the Maritime Theme Prize on behalf of everyone that I’ve had the pleasure to work with”, Eklund said in his thank you speech.
Mar 24, 2014
Australia's Incat Crowther has announced it is designing a fourth vessel for UltraMar of Cancun, Mexico. The 48-metre catamaran passenger ferry will be built at Midship Marine in Louisiana, USA, and will operate on UltraMar’s busy Playa de Carmen-Cozumel route. High on UltraMar’s priority list is the loading and disembarking more than 800 passengers, upgraded cargo handling and a robust platform fit for high turnaround frequency and exposed dock facilities. The vessel will capable of a service speed of 24 knots and a maximum speed of 28 knots.
Mar 21, 2014
Viking Line's Board of Directors and its President and CEO, Mikael Backman, have decided to go their separate ways. The Board is of the opinion that in recent years, Mr Backman has implemented changes that are important to the Company, but that the future will require different leadership in facing the coming challenges.
"The Board is of the opinion that Jan Hanses, currently Deputy CEO, is very suitable to take on these challenges," says Ben Lundqvist, Chairman of the Board. At the same time, the Board has appointed Andreas Remmer, Chief Financial Officer, as Executive Vice President and Deputy CEO. These organizational changes go into effect on March 20, 2014.
Mar 18, 2014
The head of Washington State Ferries resigned Tuesday, an announcement made in his weekly update. His last day will be April 15. David Moseley has run WSF since 2008. Moseley says it is his decision to leave his post and that he was not forced out. He said he is not retiring but does not know what his next professional move will be.
[David Moseley has served on the Board of Directors of Interferry since 2011.]
Mar 18, 2014
U.K. based Condor Ferries is taking advantage of Wärtsilä's new Aquarius Ready solution to retrofit two RO/RO ferries with ballast water management systems (BWMS). The vessels have been prepared for BWMS installation, but the actual equipment installation and commissioning will take place at a time convenient to the owners following ratification of the IMO Convention.
The Aquarius Ready concept has been developed by Wärtsilä to prepare vessels for the fitting of BWMS, while minimizing vessel downtime, thereby enabling more efficient operations. The contract with Condor Ferries was signed in February 2014 and the final equipment delivery will take place within 12 months from the ratification of the IMO Ballast Water Convention.
Condor Ferries operates ferry services between mainland England, the Channel Islands, and France
Mar 16, 2014
Hurriyet Daily News
A five year-old girl was killed and three women were injured when a car fell into sea while boarding a ferryboat in Istanbul on March 15. The accident took place at around 3.20 p.m. at Istanbul’s Sirkeci port, as the last vehicle - carrying four people and boarding the ferry traveling to the Harem port - dropped into the water while boarding.
According to eyewitnesses, the last car onboard the Sirkeci-Harem ferry was on the hatchway when the ship started to move. However, the hatchway was not closed properly and the car slid back, hanging from the lid [ramp] for some time before falling into the sea.
Two women managed to escape the car before it completely sank. The child and her grandmother were rescued after divers arrived at the scene. However, although the child was alive when divers took her from the water, she lost her life after being taken to hospital.
The Transport Minister has announced that an investigation has been launched. The Istanbul Fast Ferries Co. Inc. (IDO) has released a statement extending its condolences to the family.
Mar 9, 2014
The Philippine Star
In the Philippines the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) said a private ferry service along the Pasig River will be operational by the last week of April. The MMDA chairman said he expects at least eight ferries owned by private firms to be operating on the river daily. A previous ferry service on the river stopped in 2011 after typhoon “Ondoy” damaged most of the terminals. The ferry system is seen as an alternative solution to Metro Manila’s expected massive traffic jams caused by 15 major infrastructure projects across the Metro. It is also aimed to boost Metro Manila’s tourism.
The MMDA has tested a prototype of its "bus ferry" on the Pasig River. Three tugboats were converted into "bus-ferries" by attaching the bodies of mini-buses on top of the 20-foot tugboat. The yellow-colored MMDA boats can ferry at least 40 passengers.
Mar 5, 2014
The University of Strathclyde in Scotland had awarded to Stuart Ballantyne (Sea Transport Solutions, Australia), the honorary degree of Doctor of Science. The award recognises his achievement in the field of naval architecture and his work in providing safer, more economic and environmentally-compelling commercial vessel designs.
Feb 28, 2014
Stena Line has acquired the Irish-owned Celtic Link ferry service which operates from Rosslare-Cherbourg. Celtic Link currently provides a three times weekly service between Ireland and France with the 2006 Visentini built CELTIC HORIZON.
Michael McGrath, Stena Line’s COO commented: “This investment represents an important milestone for Stena Line as for the first time in our history we will be able to offer a direct ferry link between the Republic of Ireland and the Continent.”
Final details are currently being concluded around the acquisition and Stena Line hopes to be in a position to take over the running of the service with effect from Monday 31st March 2014.