News Archives from 11-6-2012 to 1-15-2013

IMO Guide for Coldwater Survival Published . . . Jan 30, 2013

In November 2012 the International Maritime Organization in London published a guide for coldwater survival. This guide provides information mariners can use prior to abandoning a vessel into cold water. The guide explains what happens to your body when you enter cold water and also gives guidance for persons who have rescued someone who has been overboard in cold water or who has been subjected to long periods of cold exposure in a liferaft. The guide is short and easily read in a few minutes. The information should be understood by anyone who works around the water in Alaska.

IMO Guide for Coldwater Survival

Bridge Navigational Watch Alarm Systems . . . Jan 15, 2013

The Coast Guard issued a notice in the Federal Register concerning Bridge Navigational Watch Alarm Systems required by SOLAS for passenger and cargo vessels on international voyages. Basically, the Coast Guard has not issued regulations requiring these devices on U.S. flag vessels and their carriage is voluntary for U.S. vessels. However, failure to have one of these alarm systems fitted could result in port state control measures being applied to U.S. vessels in foreign ports. The alarm systems are designed to alert designated persons aboard the ship that the person on watch on the bridge has become incapacitated in some way. Complete details are in the attached Federal Register notice.

Federal Register Bridge Navigational Watch Alarm Systems

Rules for Non-Inspection of Seagoing Barges Clarified . . . Jan 9, 2013

On 9 January 2013, the Coast Guard issued a proposed rule that would once and for all clarify the requirements for non-inspection of seagoing barges. This rule clears up ambiguities that have existed in the regulations for several years. The rule essentially states that: Based on 46 U.S.C. 2101(32) and 46 U.S.C. 3302(m), seagoing barges that do not need inspection are those that meet all of the following characteristics:
1. Coastwise or oceans route;
2. 100 gross tons or greater;
3. Unmanned as determined by the OCMI; and
4. Not carrying hazardous material as cargo, or a flammable or combustible liquid, including oil, in bulk.
Additional detail is provided in the federal register notice linked below.

Seagoing Barges Federal Register

New AIS Sites Installed in Aleutians . . . Dec 18, 2012

In November and December 2012 the Marine Exchange completed two AIS antenna installations on Akun and Umnak Islands in the Aleutian Island Chain. These installations are part of the Marine Exchjange's continuing effort to improve AIS coverage for the areas transited by vessels in the Bering Sea north of the Aleutians and in the North Pacific Ocean just south of the Aleutians. These complex and innovative installations will go a long way to improve safety of all mariners transiting the region. More details on the installations are provided at the link below.

Akun and Umnak Island AIS Installatio Details


Live Alaska Weather Information Available . . . Nov 6, 2012

In support of an AOOS (Alaska Ocean Observing System) initiative to expand weather sensors and enhance the dissemination of weather data to mariners using the Alaska AIS (Automatic Identification System) the Marine Exchange of Alaska recently installed a weather sensor on Portland Island. This station, located in the vicinity of Juneau is the fourth AIS/WX weather sensor station installed in support of this AOOS project.  Others have been installed at Homer, Mary Island and Marmion Island.  The weather data is presently being fed to the NWS network and the data is available by selecting the “weather stations” link below.

Weather Stations