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El Faro sinking: Poor seamanship in the spotlight

The sinking of the container ship ‘El Faro’ in October 2015, claimed the title of one of the biggest marine tragedies in the recent US history. The ship had sailed directly into the path of Hurricane Joaquin, with NTSB and USCG noting that the key cause of the accident was the Captain’s failure to handle the ship against the storm and make appropriate use of weather data. As a result, all those on board perished in the sinking.

Learn from the past: Exxon Valdez incident

March 24 marks the 29th anniversary of the Exxon Valdez accident. On this date in 1989, one of the most catastrophic – if not the most catastrophic – oil spills of the 20th century took place. The tanker Exxon Valdez was departing the Port of Valdez, Alaska with a full load of North Slope crude oil, of approximately 1.26 million barrels, destined for Long Beach when it grounded on Bligh Reef in Prince William Sound. About 258,000 barrels of cargo were spilled as eight cargo tanks ruptured, causing one of the most shocking environmental disasters in the history of US.

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