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Vinalines Queen Dangers of Carriage of Nickel Ore

News alert from London P&I Club The recent tragic loss of the supramax bulk carrier, Vinalines Queen, entered with the London P&I Club, has received wide coverage in industry media. Prior to the casualty, last contact with the vessel was whilst on a voyage from Indonesia to China loaded with a cargo of nickel ore and all but one of the 23 crew were lost.Whilst the circumstances of the casualty are currently subject to investigation, reports in the press have inevitably focused upon the possibility that the sinking may be attributable to a loss of stability caused by liquefaction of the cargo. The loss of the Vinalines Queen follows the sinkings of 3 vessels at the end of 2010 and other reported incidents of vessels suffering a loss of stability when loaded with nickel ore shipped from ports in Indonesia and the Philippines.The latest casualty serves as a stark reminder of the continuing dangers associated with the carriage of nickel ore, as highlighted in issues 42 (click here), 46 (click here) and 56 (click here) of the London P&I Club's Stoploss Bulletin. Attention is also drawn to the Club Circular dated 31 January 2011 (click here) addressing the safe carriage ...

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Thousands of people attend requiem for 22 missing sailors

A requiem for the 22 missing sailor of Vinalines Queen Vinalines organized a requiem for the 22 missing sailor of Vinalines Queen at Thang Phuc pagoda in the northern port city of Hai Phong on the afternoon of January 9. The requiem had the presence of Minister of Transport Dinh La Thang, officials of Hai Phong city, the families of 22 sailors and thousands of people.A representative of the 22 families, Ngo Viet Minh, asked competent agencies to pursue the search of missing sailors."In my mind, there is no word like 'dead sailors.' I always believe that my husband and other sailors are on some inhabited islands near the area where the ship was sunk," said Tran Thi Thang, the wife of chief mechanic Le Ba Truc.Nguyen Van Hanh, director of Vinalines Shipping Company, emphasized: "With sentiments and responsibility, we promise to try every measure to bring sailors back to their families. I wish that families of sailors to contain your pain to continue your lives."At the requiem, sailor Dau Ngoc Hung, who is believed to be the only survivor, burned incense and share pain with the families of 22 missing sailors. "I hope that miracle will happen to these ...

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Vinalines Queen survivor speaks about ship sinking

Dau Ngoc Hung, a crew member of the missing Vinalines Queen cargo ship, has been found alive Dau Ngoc Hung, a crew member of the missing Vinalines Queen cargo ship, has been found alive after drifting for six days on the 5,000m-deep Philippine Sea. He says the boat sank and he is the sole survivor.The 31-year-old from Nghe An central province is one of the 23 crewmen of the ship that was carrying 54,400 tons of Nickel ore from Indonesia's Morowali port to Ningde port in China.According to Vinalines Shipping, the owner of the Vinalines Queen, the vessel went missing at 7am on December 25th upon reaching the area northeast of Luzon Island, in the Philippines.The remaining 22 sailors are feared dead after unsuccessful search attempts by air forces from Japan, Taiwan, and the Philippines.On December 30, the Vietnam's Marine Rescue Cooperation Centre (MRCC) received information from a Taiwanese rescue agency that at 10:30am the same day, a British-flagged ship named London Courage on the way to Singapore found a man adrift on a life raft.A few minutes later, a rescue centre from Hong Kong confirmed the information.MRCC director Nguyen Anh Vu immediately phoned the London Courage via satellite to ...

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Search for Vinalines Queen expands to small islands

22 out of 23 sailors are still missing Nguyen Anh Vu, General Director of the Vietnam Maritime Search and Rescue Co-ordination Center (MRCC), said that by January 3, there was no more trace of the 22 missing sailors. Dau Ngoc Hung, the only survival, was on the London Courage ship, which was heading to Singapore. The ship is scheduled to land Singapore today, January 4.Vu said that Filipino search and rescue agency agreed to join Vietnam in searching for missing sailors. The information about Vinaline Queen and missing sailors has been transmitted to the authorities of hundreds of small islands in northern Luzon.Representatives of families of missing sailors on January 3 sent a petition to the National Committee for Search and Rescue, asking the agency takes every measure and vehicle to continue searching for the missing.Besides planes, families proposed the agency to mobilize other means of transport and expand the search to uninhabited and small islands around the area where the Vinalines Queen was sunken.They also expected to have the assistance from Japanese search and rescue agency because this force has modern equipment.Major General Pham Hoai Giang, Chief of the Search and Rescue Agency of the Ministry of Defense cum ...

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Vinalines Queen – 22 More Deaths Owing to Cargo Liquefaction?

Industry Must Unite to Stop This Unnecessary Loss of Life The recent tragic loss of the 2005-built supramax bulk carrier Vinalines Queen and 22 of its crew again underlines the urgent need for greater enforcement of regulations and testing of cargoes that may liquefy.The ship, which was reportedly carrying a cargo of nickel ore from Morowali, Indonesia to China, was reported missing on 25 December, considered lost. Back in December 2010 following the loss of 3 bulk carriers and 44 crew in short succession, all owing to cargo liquefaction, Intercargo took the opportunity to remind the industry of the dangers associated with the carriage of hazardous cargoes - however the loss of the Vinalines Queen demonstrates that the message still isn't getting through.Speaking of the loss, Secretary General of Intercargo, Rob Lomas said "we've previously called on shippers and cargo interests to conduct an urgent review into the testing and safety processes involved in shipping of hazardous cargoes, following the spate of accidents and fatalities in 2010, but clearly more needs to be urgently done to stop this appalling unnecessary loss of life"."Sadly, it seems that some shipowners still do not have the relevant experience or knowledge in interpreting the ...

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Doomed Asian Bulk Carriers Go Down

Greed or incompetence results in tragic losses of lives, ships, cargoes Dozens of Asian sailors are being lost in regional waters as a result of either greed or incompetence on the part of ship captains or their employers. In the last incident 22 sailors are assumed drowned after a large Vietnamese bulk carrier, the Vinalines Queen, owned by the state shipping line, sank suddenly off the Philippines on Dec. 25. Only one of the crew survived, getting onto a life raft and being picked up by a passing British ship five days later.The story as reported by the wire services was of that one man's survival. But the bigger and unreported story is why such a large vessel would go down so suddenly. The weather was bad but nothing like so bad as should cause a ship of this size any difficulties.The answer almost certainly lies in its 54,000 ton cargo. Just like three Chinese ships which sank in late 2010, the vessel was carrying nickel ore from Indonesia to China. In the Vinalines Queen's case it was from Morowali in central Sulawesi to Ningde in Fujian in China for use in the steel industry. Four ships lost in just ...

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Missing Vietnamese ship sank, says sole survivor

Vinalines Queen sunk off the Philippines coast with 22 crew One crew member of the Vietnamese ship which went missing with 23 people onboard off the coast of the Philippines on Sunday has been rescued, VnExpress reported Friday.The newswire quoted Nguyen Anh Vu, director general of Vietnam Maritime Search and Rescue Coordination Center (VMSRCC), as saying that Dau Ngoc Hung, 31, was rescued by the UK-owned London Courage ship, which was on its way to Singapore.Hung, believed to be the only survivor, was found drifting on Friday morning on a lifeboat some 350 kilometers from the site where Vinalines Queen was located before it went missing, Vu said.He quoted Hung as saying that the ship, which was carrying 54,000 tons of nickel ore, sank at around 7 a.m. on December 25 after it titled too much to the left."The ship sank very quickly," the official said. "A lifeboat on its right side was released, but only Hung managed to get on it and had been drifting since then."The rescued sailor was in good health, he added.According to the VnExpress report, VMSRCC had informed rescue forces in the Philippines, Japan, Taiwan, and nearby countries and territories, asking them to help search ...

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