Thursday, October 13, 2011

MV Rena : John Key is angry.

Hi John

Well John I am fucking angry, excuse me Prime Minister can you tell me why you haven't condemed this from Stuff 

New Zealand Filipinos have appealed to Kiwis not to subject them to "racial hatred" as a result of the Rena grounding.
Filipinos living in Tauranga have been abused by local residents, who have given them the finger and told them they were at fault for the Rena disaster, Migrante Aotearoa New Zealand coordinator Dennis Maga said.
"Once you've been identified as a Filipino there is judgment that Filipinos are the culprits and your relatives, and you also should be blamed for this problem," Maga said.

Yes  John I am  angry that it happened, I am more angry about it than the MV Rena that I believe was an accident I can't hate an accident I can hate racism, you could do something to stop this I hope you do.

OK John what happened ? It might have been a data  entry failure, plot the reef  and then rather than plot the go around cordinants  reentre the reef cordinants, that would drive you up on to a reef every time..

Oh John have you ever driven a boat ? Have you ever made a data entry failure ?

It is easy to do John. John stop being angry it is less effective than Phil Goff  holding a shovel and doing it in a suit we can't get even a stagged photo opportunity right, Mr Key sort his out and you are PM  for ever.


Wednesday, October 12, 2011

MV Rena: Well that's nice

I see the owner of  the MV Rena has apologised to Tauranga

" Costamare Shipping Company SA managing director Diamantis Manos today issued an apology via video in which he apologised and vowed to co-operate with the investigation.
"To the people of Tauranga, we want to say that we are deeply sorry for the situation that has arisen and the threat you are now facing from fuel oil from the vessel washing up on the beaches in your beautiful part of the world,'' he said.
"It is our ship that went aground and we apologise without hesitation for what has happened.''
The company had sent experts from around the world to help deal with the situation and they were working closely with Maritime New Zealand and other agencies, as well as salvers, to try to stabilise the ship and mitigate its effects. "

That is the right thing for him to and I see that the company will co-operate with the TAIC

" It would co-operate with the Transport Accident Investigation Commission's investigation and had invited it to visit its offices so it could see the safety management system employed on the Rena. "

I know a little about these investigations and I can assure you a lot of very clever seafares will be talking amongst each other preparing some very interesting questions.

I see over at Kiwiblog Maritime New Zealand is getting a lot of flack the truth is most of this is not fair  what should be getting flack is the process in my opinion. When an incident like this happens the first thing that needs to happen is a salver is appointed this happened fairly fast and the salver is responsible to trhe owners not the New Zealand government by declaring MV Rena   and I haven't got my terminology right but effectively a dangerous ship MNZ have the ability to order the salver to do something  or veto an action they propose, that was actually smart. In my opinion the salver should despite being employed and payed by the owners should be responsible to the government.

The volunteering seems to be a total cock up and as far as I know this is being managed by MNZ I think this is wrong I would have left it to an other agency probably the regional council, MNZ have enough to do  dealing with the oil, ship and containers at sea. Ringing back people who have left their contact details on a 0800 number is a distraction, as can be seen on tonight's TVNZ News with a woman saying she hasn't heard back from them  despite  calling last Friday.

" Maritime New Zealand salvage manager Bruce Anderson confirmed this afternoon that salvage teams had been on the craft for four hours today, and had just arranged an extra hour after concluding it was safe to operate on.
Mr Anderson said the vessel was holding together and water was pushing it further onto the reef, with the entire front section now flooded.
While they have managed to board the ship, transport minister Steven Joyce said it may be too dangerous to work inside the hull of the craft.
"I have to take my hat off to these guys. They're working in a challenging, and can I say dangerous, environment."

Now this actually good news I haven't had a chance to discuss it yet but there is a real possibility that when the ship breaks up they will be able to float the stern I gather and get it to land that would make the oil extraction easy and the hull could be  cleaned and then sunk creating a new reef. The bulkheads will be the key to this and the salvage team will be able to determine there condition. I could of course be wrong and it might turn on its tits and sink.

OK I have had a look at the marine forecasts and things look a lot better for the Plenty  area for the next few days the tugs that are holding the stern on the reef might want to think about towing it ashore, the salvage team might want to be making sure the stern will float and the  Navy might want to think about the explosives they need to complete what the sea has started.

The Greens I note have attacked the idea of off shore oil drilling and I also note Phil Goff has said it is  a bad idea. I disagree but we need to have proper risk assessment and then meet that with assets. The truth is that MNZ as I pointed out in this blog when I had a crack at No Right Turn did not expect a 46 000 tonne container ship to drive its self  onto a charted reef at 17  knots ( 32  Kph ).

I guess you could argue that we need to put warning lights on reefs, Astrolabe will currently be returning a radar  return that makes it unnecessary.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Mv Rena : It gets worse.

OK things have gone badly wrong today, but this was always going to happen the issue was would it happen with the oil on board or after we had got it off. I have been reading various opinions on blogs and in the media that seem to think this ship a salvageable and we will have it tied up under arrest at Tauranga. That isn't going to happen. The MV Rena was conned into Astrolabe Reef at 17.5 knots ( 32 Kph ), MV Rena is 235 meter ship with a weight of 46,000 tonnes, 200 meters of her are on the reef her outer  hull has collapsed from 3 meters to less than a meter. Bulkheads are giving way through out the ship, water has entered the bow, MV Rena is moving on the reef that increases the stress she is under, expect more things to go wrong.

" New Zealand's worst maritime environmental disaster has been realised, Environment Minister Nick Smith says.
Smith told a press conference this afternoon the oil haemorrhaging from the ship's punctured hull today was ''fivefold'' the rate it had been in the days after its grounding on the Astrolabe Reef.
Transport Minister Steven Joyce told the public that Tauranga residents could expect to see oil washing up on beaches for months to come.
"It is my view that the tragic events that we are seeing unfolding were absolutely inevitable from the point when the Rena ran on to the reef in the early hours of Wednesday morning," Smith said.
He said the situation had become "New Zealand's worst maritime environmental disaster".

I can't argue with that but remember so far we haven't lost any lives lets keep it that way. Maritime NZ ( MNZ ) made the right call getting people off the ship.

I hate having a go at other bloggers but  No Right Turn is talking crap, something that is very unusual for him. I enjoy his blog  but disagree with his comments policy.

" At this stage its worth reminding people of our capability to respond to an oil spill. Below is exactly one third of our national oil recovery fleet:

Fills you with confidence that they'll be able to handle it, doesn't it?"

I try to keep away from issues I know fuck all about and Malcolm ? ( I think ), has gone looking for an angle and fucked up big time. He has forgotten about the private sector he has also forgotten about the Navy and the port companies assets around NZ that are available to the salvers and MNZ.

I was on the Taranui when it was built it was the first of these vessels commissioned it was just before she was handed over to the New Zealand Refining Company.

" The new mobile oil skimmer barge Taranui is the first of three vessels to be deployed around the New Zealand coast to collect oil or spread dispersant during a spill. She will be leased to the New Zealand Refining Company on a five-plus-five year agreement, and will be based at Marsden Point, near the Northland city of Whangarei, as part of their oil spill response plan. The skimmers have primarily been designed for tier three response - national incidents where the MSA is brought in to handle the incident in conjunction with the regional and local council. This does not preclude their use in tier two incidents. That will be governed by the cost of the cleanup, including the logistics of moving a barge to the cleanup site, and providing trained personnel to operate the barges."

This as I said was the first skimmer barge the subsequent two boats were payed for by the 5 + 5 year lease by NZRC. ie the tax payer owns but didn't pay for these boats. A very good public / private sector partnership.

" Taranui is the result of 18 months of planning, design and construction by the Maritime Safety Authority following the Jody F Millennium spill in Gisborne in 2002, which highlighted the need for such a vessel. Later that year, during the Tai Ping incident in Bluff, the authority borrowed one from its Australian counterparts. 'Simply put, Taranui will allow the MSA to go to oil spills, rather than wait for the spills to come to us,' says the MSA.

Taranui will stay within harbour limits when on her own, but she will be able to go further offshore, say 5km, if an assisting vessel is close by. She weighs 2.7 tonnes with outboards but no deck equipment, and three tonnes total, and is usually manned by three crew, a ticketed skipper and two hands, one on the pumps and one at the bow to direct the skimmer. 'The policy is to get out there quickly, and come back slowly,' says her skipper, Neil Roweth of the Maritime Safety Authority. Her five 150mm deep runners provide useful grip in turns, and spray is thrown well clear. She is surprisingly manoeuvrable, as the two outboards provide good separation."

Now this is why I am so pissed off with No Right Turn, these vessels were never designed to work 7 miles off shore but within harbour limits.

" Professional Skipper magazine compliments the MSA and the NZRC for their initiative and contribution to being prepared for this important risk of pollution."

 ( Disclosure: I work for Professional Skipper magazine but these are my opinions not the magazines official opinion )

Lets have a look at groundings and there have been  4 that have involved significant oil spills .

" The following list includes the more significant marine oil spills that occurred around New Zealand since 1990.
  • 1998, Don Wong 529 - Stewart Island (with 400 tonnes of automotive gas oil spilled)
  • 1999, Rotoma - Poor Knights Island (oily bilge discharge of approx 7 tonnes spilled)
  • 2000, Sea Fresh - Chatham Islands (60 tonnes of diesel spilled)
  • 2002, Jody F Millennium – Gisborne (25 tonnes of fuel oil spilled) ".

The Jodie F Millennium resulted in the  barges No Right Turn disparages.

A Labour MP accused I think Joyce of lying today but I can't find the story so will  hold off on who I think it was. Nobody is lying , the truth is nobody knows, that ship could break up tonight or next week or next month or even next year time and tide wait for no man

Sunday, October 9, 2011

MV Rena : And so it begins.

In my previous post I  warned that an environmental disaster upon us ( bit of a no brainer ) and today the reality of that prediction became evident both the bunker tanker Awanuia and HMNZS Endeavour  both are now in Tauranga. Stuff reports.

" Clumps of sticky, black, smelly oil are polluting the beach at Mt Maunganui, one of the country's most popular holiday spots following the grounding of the Rena container ship last Wednesday. More oil was expected to wash up near Papamoa within the next 24 hours amid worsening weather conditions.
Oil could continue to wash up for weeks, Transport Minister Steven Joyce said at a press conference this afternoon.
Estimates suggested anywhere from 10 to 50 tonnes of oil had gone in to the ocean. People were warned to stay off the beach and avoid all contact with the highly-toxic oil."
That is a problem with using dispersant's if they fail to disperse. Bad weather has stopped the oil recovery from MV Rena and it isn't going to get better any time soon.
" Recovery of oil from the ship was the first focus, Joyce said. Oil was being moved from the front to the back of the ship - work that was ongoing. Removal of the oil from the ship was "very challenging", with attempts to siphon it to a waiting barge today being disrupted by the weather conditions."
Now this is of concern to me I would like to know how far back.

The image shows just how on the reef MV Rena is take a look at this.

Now I would suggest that from the bridge house back isn't on the reef which makes me wonder how smart putting the oil in the back is, it may of course be that there is little choice I suspect know that the structural integrity of the ship is severely compromised and  bulkheads are collapsing as  was pointed out  on Paul Henry's Radio Live show last Friday the double hull has failed. If the ship breaks up and that is a real possibility I am told, it will probably be everything from the bridgehouse back that falls off.
I gather that there are other failures including the leader of the Opposition who was very critical of the the response to date on National Radio tonight.
Who is advising him ? I had a crack at the government on Friday for not moving faster 
" Endeavor should have been ordered to sea yesterday I accept that Awanuia is in private hands but that she is sailing to Tauranga  and Endeavor appears to be sitting on  her  backside raises questions in my mind about the competency of our public service to deal with a crisis our Navy should be able to do this, what the hell is happening at the Ministry of Defence and Maritime New Zealand."
I got that wrong and  failed to take into account logistical considerations. Goff should be able to get far more accurate information than me. Great picture but I gather it is  not the case.

Now here is something to think about when you put some cooking oil in a frying pan that is cold it doesn't run around the pan very well but as the pan heats up wow things change. Oil is oil and the oil on MV Rena isn't being kept warm the engines are turned off guess what keeps the oil warm ? 
" Clumps of sticky, black, smelly oil are polluting the beach at Mt Maunganui, one of the country's most popular holiday spots following the grounding of the Rena container ship last Wednesday. More oil was expected to wash up near Papamoa within the next 24 hours amid worsening weather conditions."
The oil that is washing up on the beach is reportedly like tar. That is the stuff you drive your car on it doesn't pump very well at cold temperatures.

Joyce was just on Close Up  and he as I was spell checking missed most of it as had the  volume muted but he made a good point about the opposition they are not getting good information. 

Thursday, October 6, 2011

MV Rena : An environmental disaster is upon us

I have had an interesting afternoon, my research skills are fairly good and my boss knew he would be asked to comment publically at some point on the Rena, I only failed to confirm one of his requests but we were fairly sure that we had the answer to that question should it be asked.

We have been kicking around the MV Rena grounding in the office for a couple of days but not having eyes on the grounding, as it is, we were guessing. Well we are fairly sure that a salvage will not happen, at some point this afternoon another breech in the hull occurred ( TV One News seems to be unaware of this I note as I write ).  This is a huge vessel and has 1700 ton's of heavey fuel oil that converts to the best part of 2 million liters of oil.

" In physics you derive to the coarsest unit of measurement. A ton can be a metric tonne, a short ton or a long ton. You rate 930 kg/m3, so we assume tonne. However, 930 kg per 1000 liters is very heavy for oil.
It depends slightly on things like type, temperature, and pressure, but petroleum oil has an approximate density of 0.88 kg/L
So there will be about 1136.36 liters per tonne"

( Photo from Stuff )
That is a fuck of a lot of oil 1,931,200 liters. It is nasty stuff and we need to get it off the MV Rena fast. Well we have two options and I think both should be used.

We  have two vessels bunker tanker Awanuia

Thanks Trevor at Sea pics on line and HMNZS Endeavour

I think she is in Wellington at the moment and loading heavy  oil will be a pain in the arse and will require  expensive cleaning  Endeavor should have been ordered to sea yesterday I accept that Awanuia is in private hands but that she is sailing to Tauranga  and Endeavor appears to be sitting on  her  backside raises questions in my mind about the competency of our public service to deal with a crisis our Navy should be able to do this, what the hell is happening at the Ministry of Defence and Maritime New Zealand.

OK the ship hit the reef at 17 knots ( probably taking a short cut ) that is not a slow speed when you weigh as much as MV Rena, I would not be in the least surprised to hear that her propellers have been damaged. I don't think she will come off the reef she will probably break up. We do not have the equipment to unload her quickly in NZ  but we can get the fuel off if we act fast.

The containers are a problem, but many will float just under the water maybe we want to think about our salvage rules ? That is an idea that occurred to me  while writing this blog and has not been office discussed.