HOT PORT NEWS from GAC

Ports & Terminals — By on October 29, 2012 at 9:46 PM
Your daily news service from ports around the world.
In this HOT PORT NEWS, read about:
  • United States, Baltimore, Maryland – Maritime Condition YANKEE set
  • United States, Baltimore, Maryland – Public terminals closed
  • United States, New York, NewYork – Hurricane Condition ZULU in New York & New Jersey
  • United States, New York, NewYork – Update on conditions at transportation facilities
  • United States, all ports – Hurricane Sandy strengthens
  • United States, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania – Hurricane readiness Condition ZULU
  • Singapore, Singapore – Acoustic research at St. John  Island
  • Australia, Port Kembla – Potential marine pilot industrial dispute 
DATE: October 29, 2012 COUNTRY: United States PORT: Baltimore, Maryland Maritime Condition YANKEE set
Effective 1800 hours, October 28, 2012, the U.S. Coast Guard has established Maritime Condition YANKEE in anticipation of gale force winds and flooding in the Baltimore area within 24 hours.
The maritime community is advised to review hurricane preparedness procedures and monitor weather broadcasts.
The following actions are necessary in preparation for heavy weather:
1. The terminals will remain open, but cargo operations are limited.
2. Keep abreast of weather conditions. High winds and flooding are anticipated.
3. Restrictions have been placed on vessel movement by USCG.  No movement of vessels is allowed in the port without COTP approval. For details, check http://homeport.uscg.mil/baltimore
4. Hurricane preparedness plans must be implemented. The MPA’s Hurricane Preparedness Plan and/or other applicable plans may be found on www.marylandports.com.
5. Complete securing of buildings and equipment for heavy weather.
6. Secure non-essential fuel and chemical storage and supply facilities (close valves, secure openings, etc.)
7. Ensure that the COTP Baltimore has been notified of any vessels still moored at a terminal.
8. Finalize survey of terminal areas for any potential hazards.  Notify MPA Ops(410.633.1077) and the COTP Baltimore (410.476.2693) if any hazards are found.
9. Ensure all hazardous cargo is secured and protected from damage as much as possible.
10. Prepare for the possibility of flooding and ensure measures to mitigate damage as much as possible (e.g. sandbag doors, move critical equipment, documents, and records to a higher location such as the second floor of a multi-story building or on top of tables or desks, etc.).
11. Normal telephone service may not be available after a hurricane. Review radio procedures and protocols and ensure radio batteries are available and charged.
12. The MdTA Police will patrol MPA facilities and report any problems or hazardous conditions noted to the responsible terminal operator and the MPA Ops. Department. The MPA may stand up its Command Post (CP) per its written procedures. Tenant representation may be requested.  Decision will be made Monday, October 29, 2012.
13. SERM or CP will make regular status reports to the Maryland Emergency Management Agency Emergency Operations Center in accordance with Appendix 3 to Annex C of the Maryland Emergency Operations Plan. Any questions or issues, contact MPA Ops 410.633.1077.
(For information about operaions in the USA contact GAC USA at usa@gac.com)
Source: Maryland Port Administration Hurricane Advisory dated 28 October 2012
DATE: October 29, 2012 COUNTRY: United States PORT: Baltimore, Maryland Public terminals closed
The MPA-managed public marine terminals at the Port of Baltimore will be closed on Monday for vessel and ship traffic due to Hurricane Sandy. (For information about operations in the USA contact GAC USA at usa@gac.com)
Source: Maryland Department of Transportation – Port Administration notice dated 28 October 2012
 DATE: October 29, 2012 COUNTRY: United States PORT: New York, NewYork Hurricane Condition ZULU in New York & New Jersey
The U.S. Coast Guard COTP has set Hurricane Condition ZULU for the port of New York and New Jersey.
All port vessels and facilities should review and comply with the Captain of the Port New York Hurricane and Severe Weather Plan.
In accordance with 33 CFR 160.111, all commercial deep draft vessels and barges greater than 500 gross tons remaining in port must be at their mooring site in accordance with their Remaining in Port Checklist as approved by the COTP. No vessel may enter, transit or remain within the Port of NY/NJ without the permission of the Captain of the Port.
Tug companies and piloting organizations should keep the COTP apprised of the status and availability of service, and tug companies should provide a list of light tugs available for emergency response.
(For information about operations in the USA contact GAC USA at usa@gac.com)
Source: U.S. Coast Guard, Sector New York, Advisory Notice CGAN 2012-080 dated 29 October 2012
DATE: October 29, 2012 COUNTRY: United States PORT: New York, NewYork Update on conditions at transportation facilities
Due to the impending landfall of Hurricane Sandy, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey reports the following update on the conditions at its transportation facilities:
AIRPORTS The Port Authority’s airports – John F. Kennedy International, Newark Liberty International, Stewart International and LaGuardia airports -are opened. However, air carriers have ceased operations at the airports until further notice, and we are encouraging travelers to not go to the airports.
JFK AirTrain service was suspended at 10 p.m. Sunday and AirTrain Newark service is in the process of being shut down as of midnight.
PATH All PATH service was suspended as of midnight until further notice.
PORTS The Port Authority’s maritime facilities are closed until further notice.
TUNNELS AND BRIDGES The Port Authority’s tunnels and bridges are opened. However, Port Authority staff will closely monitor the wind and flooding conditions. Closures will be determined on a case-by-case basis based on high winds, rainfall and roadway conditions, however closures are highly likely beginning on Monday. Motorists are urged to drive at reduced speeds when roadways are wet, and pay close attention to posted electronic messages for important information.
PORT AUTHORITY BUS TERMINAL By 2 a.m. Monday, all public and private bus service from the Port Authority Bus Terminal will be suspended until further notice.
Passengers are reminded to check http://www.panynj.gov/ for updated information about PATH, the airports, the tunnels and bridges and all other Port Authority facilities.
For further information about safety precautions, evacuation routes and best practices for New York State, visit http://www.governor.ny.gov/stormwatch; and for New Jersey, visit www.ready.nj.gov
(For information about operations in the USA contact GAC USA at usa@gac.com)
Source: Port Authority of New York and New Jersey Press Release No.153-2012 dated 29 October 2012
DATE: October 29, 2012 COUNTRY: United States PORT: all ports Hurricane Sandy strengthens
A tropical storm warning is in effect for: * north of Surf City to Duck North Carolina * Pamlico and Albemarle Sounds * Bermuda
In addition, hurricane-force winds are expected along portions of the coast between Chincoteague Virginia and Chatham Massachusetts. This includes the tidal Potomac from Cobb Island to Smith Point, the middle and upper Chesapeake Bay, Delaware Bay and the coasts of the northern Delmarva Peninsula, New Jersey, the New York City area, Long Island, Connecticut and Rhode Island.
Tropical-storm-force winds are expected north of Chatham to Merrimack River Massachusetts, the lower Chesapeake Bay and south of Chincoteague to Duck North Carolina, the northern endpoint of the tropical storm warning….
….At 800am EDT (1200 UTC) the center of Hurricane Sandy was located near latitude 36.8 north, longitude 71.1 west. Sandy is moving toward the north=northwest near 20mph (32 km/h). A turn toward the northwest is expected later this morning, followed by a turn toward the west-northwest tonight.  On the forecast track, the center of Sandy will move over the coast of the mid-Atlantic states this evening or tonight.
Reports from an air force hurricane hunter aircraft indicate that the maximum sustained winds have increased to near 85mph (140 km/h) with higher gusts. Sandy is expected to transition into a frontal or wintertime low pressure system prior to landfall. However, this transition will not be accompanied by a weakening of the system and in fact a little strengthening is possible during this process. Sandy is expected to weaken after moving inland.
Hurricane force winds extend outward up to 175 miles (280km) from the center and tropical storm force winds extend outward up to 485 miles (780km). Sustained tropical-storm-force winds are occurring along the coasts of southern New Jersey, Delaware and eastern Virginia, and extends as far inland as the centrqal and souther Chesapeake Bay…
….Tropical storm conditions or gale force winds are already occurring over portions of the mid-Atlantic states from North Carolina northward to Long Island. Gale force winds are expected to continue to spread over other portions of the mid-Atlantic coast, New York City and southern New England later this morning. Winds of hurricane force could reach the mid-Atlantic states including New York City and Long Island later today. Winds affecting the upper floors of high-rise buildings will be significantly stronger than those near ground level.
The combination of an extremely dangerous storm surge and the tide will cause normally dry areas near the coast to be flooded by rising waters. The water could reach the following depths above ground if the peak surge occurs at the time of high tide: – NC north of Surf City including Pamlico/Albemarle Sounds: 4-6 ft – SE VA and Delmarva including lower Chesapeake Bay: 2-4 ft – upper and middle Chesapeake Bay: 1-3 ft – Long Island Sound, Raritan Bay and New York Harbor: 6-11 ft – elsewhere from Ocean City MD to the CT/RI border: 4-8 ft – CT/RI border to the south shore of Cape Cod including Buzzards Bay and Narragansett Bay: 3-6 ft – Cape Cod to the MA/NH border including Cape Cod Bay: 2-4 ft – MA/NH border to the U.S./Canada border: 1-3 ft
Surge-related flooding depends on the relative timing of the surge and the tidal cycle and can vary greatly over short distances. Given the large wind field associated with Sandy, elevated water levels could span multiple tide cycles resulting in repeated and extended periods of coastal and bayside flooding. In addition, elevated waters could occur far removed from the center of Sandy.
Furthermore, these conditions will occur regardless of whether Sandy is a tropical or post-tropical cyclone…
Rainfall totals of 3-6 inches are expected over far northeastern North Carolina with isolated maximum totals of 8 inches possible.  Rainfall amounts of 4-8 inches are expected over portions of the mid-Atlantic states, including the Delmarva Peninsula, with isolated maximum amounts of 12 inches possible. Rainfall amounts of 1-3 inches with isolated maximum amounts of 5 inches are possible from the southern tier of New York state northeastward through New England.
Snow accumulations of 2-3 feet are expected in the mountains of West Virginia with locally higher totals today through Wednesday. 1-2 feet of snow is expected in the mountains of southwestern Virginia to the Kentucky border, with 12-18 inches of snow in the mountains near the North Carolina/Tennessee border and in the mountains of western Maryland.
Dangerous surf conditions will continue from Florida through New England for the next couple of days.
(For information about operations in the USA contact GAC USA at usa@gac.com)
Source: National Hurricane Center, Miami Fl, Hurricane Sandy Intermediate Advisory No.28A issued at 800am EDT on 29 October 2012
 DATE: October 29, 2012 COUNTRY: United States PORT: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Hurricane readiness Condition ZULU
The Captain of the Port is notifying Port partners that Hurricane Condition ZULU will be set throughout the port at 0600 on October 29, 2012 due to the potential for Hurricane SANDY to impact the Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Delaware tri-state area.
The Captain of the Port Sector Delaware Bay is notifying mariners that projections indicate the Port of Philadelphia and surrounding areas will experience high winds, severe thunderstorms, and increased seas, surf and tidal surge. All members of the port community to include vessel owners and operators, vessel agents, pilots, and facility owners and operators are to take adequate precautions and to follow the  Port Hurricane Contingency Plan, to include Section 406, dated May 17, 2011 and comply with the requirements of Section 1200, “Storm Preparation Checklists for Vessels and Facilities” and adhere to the following: * Vessels must be securely moored and prepared for hurricane conditions. * All liquid cargo transfer operations are to be suspended.
Once it has been determined that the hurricane and severe weather has passed, the Coast Guard will transfer into hurricane downgrade conditions and conduct port assessments in efforts to return the port to normal operations as quickly as possible.
Additional restrictions may continue depending on the severity of the hurricane’s impact. The Coast Guard asks for a collaborative effort from port members in reporting any hazardous conditions or breakaway of vessels.
The Port Hurricane Contingency Plan can also be found on Homeport at https://homeport.uscg.mil/DelawareBay.
(For information about operations in the USA contact GAC USA at usa@gac.com)
Source: U.S. Coast Guard, Sector Delaware Bay, Marine Safety Information Bulletin No.17-12 dated 28 October 2012
 DATE: October 29, 2012 COUNTRY: Singapore PORT: Singapore Acoustic research at St. John  Island
The working period for acoustic research at St. John Island has been extended. The work will now be conducted from 31 October to 15 Decemeber.
Accoding to the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore Port Marine Notice No.154 of 2012 dated 29 October 2012, the works will be carried out from 1000 to 1700 hours on weekdays, within the working area bounded by the following coordinates (WGS 84 Datum): 1) 01° 13.033’N / 103° 51.088’E 2) 01° 13.077’N / 103° 51.187’E 3) 01° 12.920’N / 103° 51.256’E 4) 01° 12.848’N / 103° 51.113’E
The daily experiment will be done by deploying Autonomous Underwater Vehicles (AUVs).
A safety boat will be deployed in the vicinity to warn other craft to keep clear of the working area.
Craft involved in the works will exhibit the appropriate local and international day and night signals.
When in the vicinity of the working area, mariners are reminded to: (a) keep well clear and not to enter the working area; (b) maintain a proper lookout; (c) proceed at a safe speed & navigate with caution; (d) maintain a listening watch on VHF channel 68 (West Control); and (e) communicate with West Control on VHF 68 for assistance, if required.
For information about operations in Singapore contact GAC Singapore at sihngapore@gac.com
DATE: October 29, 2012 COUNTRY: Australia PORT: Port Kembla Potential marine pilot industrial dispute
Port Kembla Port Corporation (PKPC) has advised that the union, AMOU and PKPC Marine Pilots are seeking approval to take protected industrial action through Fair Work Australia.
The dispute with the marine pilots has been on-going for about 2-3 years over their conditions and enterprise agreement
For information about operations in Australia contact GAC Australia at shipping.australia@gac.com

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