The current GHG emissions profile of the US inland waterway sector is low compared to other freight modes. The American Waterways Operators cites statistics that show that one dry cargo barge can carry the same amount of cargo as 16 rail cars or 70 trucks and that barge transportation produces 30% less greenhouse gas emissions than rail and more than 1,000% less than trucks. Still, that does not mean that decarbonization is an issue that the industry can afford to ignore, and ABS and Vanderbilt University have just published a landmark report analyzing decarbonization strategies for U.S. inland waterways.
The UK’s Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB) and the Danish Maritime Accident Investigation Board (DMAIB) has published a comprehensive 94 page study focusing on the practical application and usability of ECDIS. The study follows a qualitative methodology, primarily based on semi-structured interviews with 155 ECDIS users and observation data gathered between February and July 2018 during sea voyages in European waters on 31 ships of various types.
Bureau Veritas has published a comprehensive set of guidelines to promote and support the safe carriage of containers in bulk carriers. In recent months there has been unprecedented demand for the carriage of containers. This has prompted charterers to explore the possibility of using of bulk carriers for that task. Bulk carriers, in general, are non-cellular vessels compared to container ships.
Whilst the carriage of containers in bulk carriers is possible, but only after extensive planning, assessment and scrutiny, operators must liaise with their insurance carriers, the Class society of their vessel(s) and corresponding Flag Administration for advice and guidance on the necessary modifications and/or additions to satisfy their requirements.
The latest NTSB Safer Seas Digest report includes lessons learned from US maritime incident investigations. Following analysis of 42 cases NTSB warns that new lithium-ion battery hazards can be every bit as deadly as the worst storms.
NTSB commented, “The real world is a peculiar academy. We hope that this collection of lessons learned in the investigations closed in 2020 helps readers to take a step back and view their own operation with a cold, critical eye, then return to their day-to-day routines ready to take the appropriate action.”