Power Hungry

Speaking of hoaxes, The Shipping Tribune printed the following story on October 3rd;

“The UK P&I Club highlights sudden loss of power as a cause of claims”

“The UK P&I Club’s latest Risk Focus bulletin highlights the issues of sudden loss of power, a problem highlighted by incidents during and after the switching to lower sulphur fuels that are now mandated in certain coastal regions. In the bulletin, the Club highlights causes of sudden loss of power and proposes mitigating procedures that ships’ crew should adopt. The Club reveals that main engine failures or electrical blackouts now amount to 7% of its third party claims property damage in US $ terms. Many were enormously expensive and in some cases amounted to millions of dollars. Ships effectively out of control as a result of these problems have caused extensive damage to berths, locks, bridges, navigational marks, loading arms, cranes and gantries as well as moored ships. Costly collision and grounding claims can similarly be caused by these failures.

“Concern about these rising claims prompted the club to initiate a data collection exercise by the UK Club’s risk assessors and a detailed analysis of more than 700 claims. The resulting title ‘Risk Focus: Loss of Power’ is the third review born from the Club’s innovative ‘Bowtie’ risk management system to be published

“It is no exaggeration to suggest that main engine failures and blackouts tend to occur most regularly at the point in a voyage where the ship is at its most vulnerable. In confined waters or entering or leaving port, the stable loads, which will generally prevail with the ship on passage, are disturbed. There is additionally some evidence that the compliance with the low sulphur fuel regulations and changing from one grade of fuel to another may have exacerbated these problems …

“The consequences of main engine failures or blackouts can be little short of disastrous, in terms of the enormous third party property damage claims which can result. An entire canal system or waterway could be put out of action as a result of an out of control ship damaging a lock or bridge, while months of expensive inactivity could be suffered should a specialist berth with bulk loaders or gantries be damaged by a ship. The costs of ships rendered inactive as a result of third party damage can be substantial as can all claims from collisions and grounding attributable to such causes.” –

This is just another aspect in what’s been labeled as “the business of fear”. Thousands of ships were sunk during World War II – hundreds of them right off our own Atlantic Coast, as a matter of fact – yet none of the vast oceans show any signs of pollution. Fear mongers, however, have convinced the dumbed-down populace that merchant ships are a danger to life and limb and have mandated that those ships must now burn safe, low-sulphur fuels. Safe? – and more than 700 claims already?

Soon enough, a waterway like the Suez Canal – or even the Delaware River – will feel the effects of this hoax, and then watch the heads roll.