The Auckland District Court has sentenced Ports of Auckland Limited (POAL) to a fine of $280,000 for allowing its pilot boats to exceed harbor speed limits on thousands of voyages, including one that ended in a high-speed collision with a swimmer.
The director of national regulator Maritime NZ, Keith Manch, said POAL has also agreed to pay $220,000 to the family of the swimmer, Leslie Gelberger. Gelberger was struck and killed by the pilot boat Wakatere on April 20, 2017, while he was swimming about 270 meters off Auckland’s popular Cheltenham Beach.
POAL and the master of the pilot boat, Grant More, both pleaded guilty to one charge each under the Health and Safety at Work Act for “failure to comply with a duty that exposes an individual to a risk of serious injury, serious illness or death.” The court fined POAL about $280,000 and Mr. More about $5,500.
Mr. More admitted exceeding the harbor’s speed limits on the casualty voyage, and POAL admitted that its pilot boats exceeded harbor speed limits on as many as 4,200 additional journeys over the nine month period after Gelberger’s death. The count represents an estimated 99 percent of all journeys made by POAL pilot boats over this time.
“The message is less speed, less harm,” said Manch. “Ports of Auckland had inadequate systems to ensure its vessels did not break speed limits, and they did more than 4,200 times in nine months.”
Waitemata Harbour has two regulated speed zones – five knots when within 200 meters of shore and 12 knots in other areas within the central harbor. On the accident voyage, Wakatere was on her way to pick up a marine surveyor from a ship, and she navigated through the harbor at a speed up to seven times faster than permitted. As she rounded North Head at the harbor entrance, she was operating at about 36 knots in the five knot zone. She exited the zone at this pace, and she struck Gelberger 10 seconds later.
At the exact position where the casualty occurred, the harbor speed limits do not apply – only COLREGS’ “safe speed” rule. The crew heard a bump but did not see the victim, and they thought it might have been a mechanical casualty. They slowed, turned and retraced their track line, but did not encounter Gelberger.
They returned to POAL’s Auckland base, exceeding the speed limits again, traveling through the 12 knot zone at about 30 knots and through the five knot zone at about 22 knots.
Police began investigating the incident when Gelberger was reported overdue from his swim. The next day, POAL notified Maritime NZ that Wakatere might have been involved in the incident. In the investigation that followed, Maritime NZ identified the monthslong pattern of excessive speed.
Wakatere is a waterjet-powered, foil-assisted aluminum catamaran constructed for POAL in 2015. She has a top speed in excess of 40 knots, according to her designer.
Go to Source
A massive fire broke out at the Port of Beirut on Thursday, incinerating a warehouse full of tires and oil within the port’s free zone. The same area was heavily damaged in the ammonium nitrate explosion that leveled the central port area and the adjacent waterfront on August 4. According to Lebanon’s civil defense agency, […]
Over the course of the past five days, the Australian Maritime Safety Authority arranged a medical intervention for an injured aboard a freighter in the Indian Ocean. On Saturday evening, the Spliethoff tweendecker Dolfijngracht called for assistance while under way about 1,000 nauical miles off the coast of Western Australia. A crewmember had sustained serious […]
The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has released a Marine Accident Brief about an accident that occurred on April 15, 2019, involving the towing vessel DeJeanne Maria which struck the end of a submerged dredge pipeline while pushing two spud barges to the Gulf of Mexico. The incident occurred on the Mississippi River in Pass […]
Best known as a leading passenger airport serving Germany’s most populated federal state North Rhine-Westphalia, Düsseldorf has become transformed into a vital distribution point, during the COVID 19 pandemic, for medical equipment and other life-saving goods, mostly from China. Gerton Hulsman, managing director of cargo operations, reports that the handling teams are working hard to […]
With close to 100 daily cargo flights operated to a destination network spanning more than 65 cities across six continents, Emirates SkyCargo is delivering essential supplies and commodities to people around the world. The air cargo carrier is currently operating 11 Boeing 777 freighter aircraft, each with a capacity to transport about 100 tonnes of […]
The UK government’s new post-Brexit tariff regime will result in both winners and losers. The new regime is set to replace the European Union’s Common External Tariff from the end of the Brexit Transition Period on December 31, 2020. The UK’s commitment to the ongoing Brexit process and ending the UK’s transition from EU membership […]
DSV Belgium has solid experience in the transport of pharmaceutical products for different customers. With a pharma hub based at Brussels Airport a lot of experience and know-how has been built up over the years. Last weekend, the forwarder handled one hundred million mouth masks, an important milestone for its Belgian organisation that has put […]
Emirates SkyCargo has expanded its weekly scheduled cargo flight operations to cover 75 destinations across six continents. Through its wider reach, Emirates SkyCargo is able to transport essential commodities and other urgently needed cargo more rapidly across the world, allowing exporters and importers across markets to benefit from direct access to widebody cargo capacity. Some […]
Global commercial aviation charter company Albion Aviation Group is reporting that it is seeing a considerable uptake in its professional cargo broker training courses from the current global pandemic crisis and surge in charter demand. “We have completed a number webinar courses for a whole of host of companies, looking to manage their own cargo […]
Operators can continue to use pilots and other crew members who have unable to comply with certain training, recent experience, testing, and checking requirements due to the COVID-19 outbreak in support of essential operations. Additionally, this Special Federal Aviation Regulation (SFAR) provides regulatory relief to certain persons and pilot schools unable to meet duration and […]
Astral Aviation has increased its intra-African network with cargo freighters during the pandemic. While there has been a reduction in capacity to, from, and within Africa, which has been caused by a stoppage of passenger flights and limited frequencies on freighter aircraft, Astral Aviation continues to operate cargo freighters from its Nairobi hub to 13 destinations […]
The U-Freight Group (UFL), with its considerable involvement in eCommerce logistics, says that the latest statistics showing that global e-commerce sales hit $25.6 trillion in 2018 are a further vindication of its decision to enter this sector of the international freight market several years ago. The latest available estimates, up 8% from 2017, were recently […]
Callan Marine is serving as the prime contractor to the Texas Department of Transportation for a maintenance dredging project located at the Bolivar Ferry Terminal, in Galveston, Texas. Work began in May and is estimated to be complete in late July 2020. The project consists of the removal of 600,000 cubic yards of material and […]
Network Airline Management and TAAG Angola Airlines are pleased to announce the renewal of their long-term freighter aircraft contract by an additional 12 months, sealing an ongoing partnership for the foreseeable future. Operating a regular weekly scheduled service from Liege, Belgium, to the capital of Angola, Luanda, Network Airline Management provides a Boeing 747-400F aircraft […]
Qatar Airways Cargo transported 56 SkyCell containers with vaccines from one of the largest vaccine manufacturers worldwide on its scheduled freighter and belly-hold cargo flights for its customer, CEVA Logistics. The 54-tonne shipment consisting of pneumococcal and varicella vaccines were flown from Brussels to Mumbai via the carrier’s hub in Doha on two separate flights. […]
NOAA Fisheries announced Friday that it will cancel five out of its six large-scale research surveys in Alaskan waters this year due to COVID-19. The canceled surveys include the Aleutian Islands bottom trawl survey, the eastern Bering Sea bottom trawl survey, the northern Bering Sea bottom trawl survey, the Bering Sea pollock acoustics survey, and […]