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ReCAAP issues Tug Boats and Barge Guide

Guide to prevent tug boats and barges from hijacking ReCAAP has issued Tug Boats and Barge guide to capture tips, guidelines, reporting procedures and contact details for tug boat owners, operators and crew in avoiding hijacking and robbery onboard tug boats and barges.The guide contains inputs and experience of tug boat owners, operators and masters whose vessels had been robbed or hijacked; and modus operandi of the robbers and hijackers. In planning a passage, the guide highlights the responsibilities of the ship owner, ship master and crew at the variousphases: the pre-sailing, sailing and post incident reporting/follow-up phases.In past four years (2008-2011), it was observed that more tug boats and bargeshad been targets of robbery and hijacking in certain locations of Asia. The inherent characteristics and activities of tug boats towing barges had made these vessels relatively more vulnerable, particularly the low freeboard, slow speed of a tug boat which on an average moving between 8-10 knots, small number of crew onboard a tug boat, and unmanned barges with cargoes and logistic items onboard.View more information by clicking at ReCAAP - Tug Boats and Barge (TaB) GuideSource: ReCAAP

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No one in charge when Chiefton tugboat sunk

Tugboat crewman drowned in the River Thames A tugboat crewman drowned in the River Thames in a towing operation where no one had been nominated to be in charge, according to a report.Darren Lacey, 40, was on the tug Chiefton when it capsized and sunk after colliding with the crane barge it was towing in Greenwich, south London.The Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB) said the collision happened after the barge hit a buoy.It said action to avoid the collision was "inappropriate and taken too late"."Chiefton's lack of reserve power and short tow ropes then made collision with the barge inevitable," said the report.The Chiefton was pulling the barge, which had two pilots aboard, while another tug, Steven B, was pushing it.The MAIB said Mr Lacey, an engineer and deckhand from Gravesend, was not wearing a lifejacket when the Chiefton sunk on 12 August last year.'Limited experience' The Chiefton's skipper and mate were rescued from the river."All of those involved had very limited experience with the specific tug configuration used."No one had been nominated to be in overall charge of the towing operation."The MAIB added the Port of London's tow-specific risk assessment and passage plan focused on the bridge transit part ...

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