COS Weekly Newsletter - Friday, 7 January 2022

COS Weekly Newsletter - Friday, 7 January 2022

COS Weekly Newsletter - Friday, 7 January 2022

Local News

Truckers threaten job action over truck age restrictions

On February 1, 2022 the Port of Vancouver will introduce a ban on trucks older than ten years as part of its Clean Trucking Initiative under its Truck Licensing System.  This initiative launched in late 2020 is meant to enforce more stringent environmental requirements for trucks that access the port starting this year with a rolling truck age.  Unifor and the Port Transportation Association have been raising concern with the potential impact that may force hundreds of container truck out of the port transportation system. Timing to kick off this initiative along with mandatory vaccinations for drivers is less than ideal given driver shortages and the pressure from the state of the pandemic, flooding and supply chain congestion. Job action is being discussed and Unifor is renewing demands to convene consultations about the fairest way to transition the trucks without causing major financial hardship for truck drivers and minimal disruption in port trucking capacity.  Today in the Port of Vancouver there are 11 container vessels waiting in designated anchorages and several vessels drifting offshore waiting for an anchorage.  Any opportunity to prevent further disruption to port activities should be considered.

Container vessel undergoing repairs at Ogden Point

SM Line’s SM Busan, a 6622 TEU containership, arrived in Victoria's Ogden Point terminal to effect repairs that may take several weeks. The vessel had departed Portland, Oregon on December 18th for its return voyage to South Korea, and after encountering engine problems and difficulty in maintaining top speed the ship anchored briefly at Constance Bank under tug escort.  The vessel shifted to Ogden Point on January 2nd to commence repair work on the ship's engine.  The SM Busan is the first vessel to use Ogden Point's new Pier B mooring dolphin extension that was completed ahead of the anticipated 2020 cruise season.

VFPA seeking applicants for board of directors

The Vancouver Fraser Port Authority's Port Users Nominating Committee is accepting applications from those interested in serving as a member of the port authority's Board of Directors.  The deadline for applications is 5pm on January 19, 2022 and for more information on the nomination process view the information published on the VFPA website on eligibility and recruitment.

Port Alberni Port Authority promotes Carter

The Port Alberni Port Authority has promoted Mike Carter to Vice President of Operations effective January 1, 2022. Mike has been with the port since 2009 and has advanced progressively through positions of increased responsibility at the marinas, marine facilities and currently in terminal operations where Mike has been the Director of Operations since 2017. Mike brings a wealth of experience to all the operations of the port and will continue to focus on growth and new development at the terminal, as well as with all of the port’s operations. His responsibilities include overseeing the operations of the terminals, marinas, campground, piers and capital projects. He is also accountable for the management of port communications, marketing, and public relations. Congratulations Mike!


CBSA and CBP extend emergency protocols for BC

Today CBSA and CBP extended the CBSA and CBP Joint Updated Emergency Protocols in Response to Flood Situation in BC to March 31, 2022 to facilitate the movement of goods by Canadian domestic truck carriers that may need to transit through the US to reach destinations in Canada. The protocols outline the standard procedures for transit, including the advance filing of an electronic truck manifest and utilization of an in-bond or in-transit transaction.  This will facilitate crossing and decrease delay at the border that will be caused by these temporary measures.

Minister Alghabra reminds boaters of SRKW protection measures

Minister of Transport, the Honourable Omar Alghabra, reminded Canadians that as part of the measures introduced by the Government of Canada earlier in 2021, vessels are still prohibited from approaching any killer whale within a 400-metre distance in British Columbia coastal waters between Campbell River and Ucluelet until May 31, 2022. Canada’s Marine Mammal Regulations, which require maintaining 200 metres away from killer whales off the coast of B.C., continue to apply year-round. In 2021 enforcement actions included the issuance of 11 administrative monetary penalties totalling $45,750. The limited number of repeat violations reflects a successful educational campaign for boaters during the year. In last week's news release the Minister recognized the accomplishiment of the ECHO program and stated that the Government of Canada will continue to work with marine, not-for-profit, and Indigenous partners in Canada, and with federal officials, state officials and non-government organizations in the United States to protect Southern Resident killer whales.


Port of Los Angeles to introduce surcharge on empties

The Port of Los Angeles plans to begin charging a fee to ocean carriers that allow empty containers to linger on the Port’s marine terminals for nine days or longer.  The fee, subject to approval by the Los Angeles Harbor Commission, would take effect on Jan. 30, 2022. Under the policy, starting Jan. 30 ocean carriers will be charged $100 for an empty container dwelling for nine days and then increasing in $100 increments per container per day until the container leaves the terminal. If approved by the Harbor Commission, implementation of the fee will be at the discretion of the Executive Director. The Port of Los Angeles announced a similar program on Oct. 25 for lingering import containers. The Port has delayed enacting the fee on the import containers because import containers dwelling more than 9 days has been reduced by 53% since Oct. 24. Any fees collected from dwelling cargo will be reinvested for programs designed to enhance efficiency, accelerate cargo velocity and address congestion impacts.

Terminal 5 in the NWSA gateway re-opens

Phase one of Terminal 5 is open for cargo ships to call the NWSA gateway. The MSC Monterey is the first vessel to call the newly modernized terminal with four new Super-post Panamax cranes ready to work the ship.  The Terminal 5 Modernization Program launched in 2016 to expand gateway cargo capacity and enable The Northwest Seaport Alliance to service the largest vessels in the Transpacific trade. Construction on the new facility launched in July 2019, fueled by the combined investment from the NWSA Managing Members and SSA Marine of approximately half a billion dollars.  The terminal renovations include two reconfigured berths to four new Super-post Panamax cranes, on-dock rail, 1,500 refrigerated plug ins, and shore power capability. Phase Two of the Modernization program is underway with operations in the south berth expected to be complete in mid-2023. At full completion, Terminal 5 will have added 185-acres and annual throughput capacity of about 500,000 TEU.

FMC investigating Wan Hai and ONE complaints

The US Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) filed two notices this week regarding investigations into the business practices and fees charged two ocean carriers - Ocean Network Express (ONE) and Wan Hai. In the ONE investigation the FMC is hoping to resolve a dispute between ONE and Greatway Logistics Group based in Florida and how ONE is interpreting the definition of “merchant” in its Bill of Lading contracts whereas the investigation of Wan Hai is focussed on whether the carrier is in violation of regulations as related to its practice of assessing detention charges.


Cruise lines pause operations on multiple ships due to COVID

Royal Caribbean International is pausing operations on multiple ships due to COVID, canceling some sailings and pushing back one ship's return to cruising. Four ships have been impacted by the pause - Visions of the Seas (currently used to quarantine positive crew members), Serenade of Seas (until April 26), Jewel of the Seas (until February 20), and Symphony of the Seas (until January 29).  Norwegian Cruise Line also announced earlier this week cancelled cruises on eight of its ships as well. Between Dec. 15 and Dec. 29, cruise ships sailing in US waters reported 5,013 COVID-19 cases to the CDC.

Royal Caribbean International is moving crew members who have tested positive for coronavirus to two of its out-of-service ships, Vision of the Seas and Rhapsody of the Seas, to quarantine as the pandemic continues to surge. The transferred crew members, who are all fully vaccinated, are in isolation and are being monitored by an onboard medical team. After each crew member completes their 10-day quarantine, they return to their assigned ships.

Further lockdowns at Ningbo being watched

The pandemic has entered its third year with a partial lockdown again at the Port of Ningbo as a result of China's "zero-tolerance" COVID policy.  Amid concerns that this may result in another bullwhip of cargo, Ningbo-Zhoushan port says there is no disruption as container throughput remains consistent with the same period last year.  Additionally, Ningbo-Zhoushan port has strengthened the sea-rail transportation and deployed more barges to improve transit capacity between different port areas with having to pass through quarantine areas.  Despite these assurances forwarders are already shifting volumes to other ports to avoid landside delays resulting from suspension of other services, such as trucking services in East China's Zhejiang province, that might affect fluidity.


Jan 11 - ICS Board of Directors Meeting

Jan 12 - Plimsoll Club Board of Directors Meeting @ 1200
Jan 12 - COS Board of Directors Meeting @ 1200
Jan 13 - VMAA Board of Directors Meeting @ 1200
Jan 18 - ISSC Board of Directors Meeting @ 1200
Jan 19 - COS Owners Committee Meeting @ 
Jan 20 - COS Operations Committee Meeting @1300
Jan 26 - WMCC PACMAR/NANS Meeting @ 1000
Jan 28 - COS Liner Committee Meeting @ 0900
Feb 2/4 - Oceans Protection Plan Winter Forum

Ship of the Week

Jan. 7 - Sea Lion

The Sea Lion had been sitting derelict in Maple Bay for the past five years and was removed in November because of environmental concerns, after the abandoned vessel began listing to one side. After successfully bidding $393,000 to dismantle the tug for the federal government, Jim Drummond and his crew at the Canadian Maritime Engineering yard in Nanaimo is salvaging parts from the vessel for museums.

The Sea Lion was built on a one-piece keel from a 120-foot fir log, milled three feet deep and two feet wide, and launched into the waters at Coal Harbour in Vancouver in 1905.  It is the oldest wooden tug boat on the West Coast and it played a significant role in the province’s forestry and maritime industries. it was the first tug to pull massive Davis log rafts weaved together with chains and cables, some 500-feet long and carrying 2.5 million board feet of lumber. The tug answered the call for spruce used in aircraft production during the First World War and for lumber during the Second World War.

The Sea Lion had a number of unusual features for a tug at that time including steam-powered steering gear and towing winch, a steel tow line, dual steering and engine controls on the aft deck, and eventually, the first ship-to-shore radio and searchlight in B.C.

The Sea Lion was also at the centre of the conflict involving the migrant freighter Komagata Maru that tested Canada’s immigration laws in 1914. That summer, the tug was loaded with 125 armed immigration officers and police in an attempt to force the freighter from Vancouver harbour, but angry passengers repelled the tug by throwing coal and bricks. The event remains a scar on Canadian history.

Operating as a tug until 1969, the Sea Lion lived many lives and engine changes since, through several owners — as a private yacht, live-aboard home, charter boat, ecotour vessel and fishing lodge.

Drummond marvels at the original craftsmanship of the tug. “The joinery work is incredible,” he said. “I think of all the hours poured into building this boat and how they did everything without power tools. They used chisels, adzes, planes — everything was by hand.

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