July 14, 2024
ENVIRONMENT: Shipping Manager Pleads Guilty to MARPOL Violation
– By Godswill Odiong

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By Our Correspondent
The manager of Zeus Ship Management, pleaded guilty to MARPOL charges related to oily-waste discharges on the tanker GALISSAS, according to FleetMon.
It stated: “The owner also admitted sailing across the Atlantic and US waters without notifying the coast guard that the inert-gas system was malfunctioning, creating hazardous conditions onboard.

“The inert gas system was discovered to be inoperable at the Port of Rotterdam, but the owner decided to sail to Newport, Rhode Island to receive a spare part rather than wait. This decision could have caused unsafe oxygen levels in cargo tanks, creating an explosion risk. However, despite receiving the spare parts in Newport, the system remained non-operational.

“The US Coast Guard inspected the ship on 20th February and found the inert gas system was malfunctioning, with oxygen levels in the tanks well above the safe level, posing an explosion risk. The vessel was ordered to relocate offshore to minimize the risk. The chief mate had fabricated logbook entries, which were carried out on the operations manager’s instructions.
“Inspectors found over a dozen deficiencies, including a missing garbage record book, load line certificate, and fire drill records. The lifeboat launching arrangements were inoperable, and there were problems with the steering gear, electrical systems, winches, portable water system, and the oil water separator.

“The coast guard discovered over 9,500 gallons of oily waste had been discharged into the ocean by the lower-ranking officers on the ship, at the chief engineer’s instruction, who also told subordinates to lie about the waste’s location.”

It added: “Zeus Shipmanagement, the chief engineer, and the captain all pleaded guilty to various charges. Zeus Shipmanagement was fined $250,000 and given four years probation. Both the chief engineer and the captain of GALISSAS could face up to six years imprisonment and a $250,000 fine.”

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