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Poor record for Cook Islands ships

Thursday August 28, 2014 Written by Published in Local
Ships are detained in cases where deficiencies are serious enough to jeopardise the vessel’s seaworthiness or safety of the crew. Seen here is a holed ventilator top on one of the detained vessels. 14082733 Ships are detained in cases where deficiencies are serious enough to jeopardise the vessel’s seaworthiness or safety of the crew. Seen here is a holed ventilator top on one of the detained vessels. 14082733

Cook Islands-flagged vessels were the most often detained out of 15 flag states last year, according to a leading ship classification society.

Class NK has just released its annual report, which summarizes failings identified by Port State Control inspections carried out around the world.

The report shows that the Cook Islands had the worst record, with a detention ratio of 28.6 per cent.

That means out of the country’s 21 NK-Classed, registered ships (500 gross tonnage or more), six were detained in ports last year because of deficiencies.

Glenn Armstrong, Chief Executive of Maritime Cook Islands (MCI), said the company is not satisfied with its Port State Control performance in the last few years.  

He said MCI held a meeting with its Deputy Registrars last month in Athens, where it agreed to implement a number of steps to improve its record.

“These include running each existing vessel through our risk matrix to assist us in identifying high-risk vessels that we need to pay particular attention to, conducting Flag State Inspections on all ships flying the Cook Islands flag at least annually.”

Armstrong said MCI has “tightened up” on the age and quality of ships that it accepts for registration. These ships will have their Statutory Certificates issued by classification societies or recognised organisations such as NK.  

“Each recognised organisation will be audited annually to ensure that they are fulfilling their obligations under the delegation that they hold," he said.  

The total number of NK-registered ships was 7620 at the end of December 2013. Of those, 411 ships were detained during the year, representing about 5.4 per cent.

Class NK said ships were detained in cases where deficiencies “were serious enough to jeopardise the ship’s seaworthiness, safety of the crew on board, or to present an unreasonable threat of harm to the environment and therefore warranted the detention of the ship”.

Lifeboats, emergency fire pumps, and fire-dampers were the major items where most detainable deficiencies were found.

Panama had the most detentions overall last year, with 249 out of its massive fleet of 3160 vessels.

Class NK is a non-profit society which works to ensure the safety of life and property at sea, and the prevention of marine pollution.

It says Port State Control inspections have proved to be a highly effective tool for eliminating substandard ships

The annual report aims to provide the maritime industry with information about ships detained, as well as deficiencies found on board from all port states around the world.

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