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Not the beach view anyone wants

These are just my own personal ramblings about an incident that has caused a sickening loss of life. My heart goes out to the families and friends of those who perished, as well as the survivors who will doubtless relive those terrifying events in their minds eye for many years to come.

From every marine accident there is an investigation and from every investigation there are conclusions. Such investigations are not tasked with prosecuting the guilty, they are simply to find the facts of what happened and why it happened, so that where required, systems or procedures or equipment can be changed or modified to try to ensure the same thing will not happen again.

The relevant police authorities will make their own enquiries to deal with the facts of suspected liability and guilt. Thereafter the relevant legal jurisdiction will act accordingly on the matter.

But more than that, after an incident like this with such a tragic loss of life, surely in many maritime regions and territories, the relevant persons are asking: Could this happen here ?

That is a question to which I believe there is no “Yes or No” answer, but there are a lot of things to consider.

There is a simple and chilling fact; any accident at sea or elsewhere is analogous to a chemical reaction, if you allow the dangerous mix of ingredients into the same place at the same time then there may well be a violent reaction.

If you can keep them separate, then hopefully nothing happens. In many accidents at sea the ‘ingredients’ are speed, complacency, poor lookout, visibility and navigation, systems failure, and the unexpected.

As to the question; Could it happen in Singapore ? well it could, but in my opinion, it’s very unlikley, and here’s why.

Firstly the relevant Goverment Agency, the Maritime & Port Authority, MPA, has been very active for many years in “managing” the operation of ferry traffic in Singapore. One of the major features of this is that all ferries are required to follow demarcated routes into and out of, and through Singapore waters, and the routes are well defined and well known by near all users. In addition these ferries are required to adhere to set day & night speed limits for the routes in the direct approaches. Consequently if you are at sea in those corridoors at night, then you expect to meet ferry traffic, and at 12 knots you have a bit of time to spot them, and navigate out of their way.

Just One of the Designated Ferry Routes

It’s worthwhile to note that these routes and speed regulations have been in place for around ten years. Also be assured that they have added time and distance onto each and every journey. I can remember some journeys being around 15 minutes quicker. It was also strange to watch as a ferry gets further away from the destination to follow the route.

Secondly the Police Coastguard has a large presence on the water with a large number or active patrol craft throughout Singapore waters. Whilst they have a multitude of roles, they would seem to keep some form of watch of ferry and private and passenger traffic. This is part deterant, and part Big Brother to make sure that maritime rules and laws are followed.

At a location near you ?

Thirdly, major events such as fireworks, or yacht races or waterborne events, etc. likely dont draw the same volume of on-water spectators in Singapore as perhaps as in cities like Hong Kong, Auckland or wherever. Also Fireworks in Singapore are within sheltered or enclosed waterways, and can be easily, and best viewed from onshore. Just look at any National Day, F1, or New Years event video to see what I mean. Obviously Fireworks are at night, which immediately brings navigational and lookout issues.

Victoria Harbour Fireworks

Fourthly and importantly, the MPA many years ago implemented a scheme of ensuring each and every craft on the water has some form of AIS or HARTS, (Harbour Craft Transponder System) on board. This in effect enables the MPA Port Operations to monitor the location and speed and heading of every craft on the water, if in fact they have the time, the interest and manpower to do that. (Note they’ve just upgraded their system to handle 10,000 vessel tracks at any one time ! Click on photo to follow link to read the release.)

WOW just upgraded, they can handle 10,000 vessel tracks at any given time ! Click to follow link !

In addition there is any number of MPA Pilot boats, and MPA launches out and on the water. There is also the system of Cruising permit application process for Non Singapore registered pleasure craft vessels, which requires approval for their route and schedule for any given cruise.

Perhaps lastly there is the issue of geography and layout. Singapore has a defined and ‘regular’ coastline, and a small number of islands with ferry access, with defined routes of access to and from. Reclamation has played a big role and Islands have been dredged, linked, joined, connected and amalgamated for the use by Indutstry, Military and Leisure/Property Development. In some cases bridges and roads have been built for access, negating the use of ferries.

Other than that, and significantly, the regional ferry traffic has to be very much less than in Hong Kong.

A lot of sea room there. Easier to miss than have a collision

Indicative only. Believe accident site was close to NW tip of Lamma Island.

The investigation is underway in Hong Kong, and the families of the perished will be waiting for those conclusions, to answer the question of “How could this happen”, but the likelyhood is that is that this will all come down to those ingredients mentioned above.

If there is however one immediate lesson to be learned from this whole affair so far, it is the conclusion from the photos below.

It’s a bit unfair to make this comparision as I dont know the standards that each vessel was built to, but the immediate reaction is that one sank, and one made it to the dock, presumed to be under it’s own power.

.

The conclusion ? Travel by Catamaran !

Two Hulls = Two Chances !

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Image Source : BBC, SCMP, ST, online news outlets, etc.

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More Stories on the KRI Klewang…….First what she was supposed to be !

North Sea Boats launched the first of four advanced, stealthy, 63 meter trimaran patrol boats for the Indonesian Navy on August 31, 2012. Following the completion, extensive sea trials and testing commencing next month, the KRI KLEWANG is is expected to be fully operational 2013. All four vessels are scheduled for delivery by 2014.

The new vessel to be named KRI Klewang (after a traditional Indonesian single edged sword) was launched at Banyuwagni, in Indonesia. Following the official launching the vessel will be fitted with mission systems and weapons, including a remotely controlled gun turret and anti-ship missiles. The four vessels are built at the PT Lundin shipyard in East Java.

The vessel is powered by four MAN V12 diesel engines, driving multiple MJP 550 water jets, located on the three for maximum propulsive thrust and maneuverability. The vessel can develop a ‘sprinting’ maximum speed of 35 knots. Cruising speed is 16 knots and the stated operational range is over 2000 nautical miles.

The Klewang is armed with concealed gun turret, missile launchers and small arms posts. Trimarans offer very stable weapons platforms, and can carry various Missile systems; including Type 705 (up to 8), RBS15, Penguin or Exocet, and 40-57mm Naval Guns, or a CIWC (Close In Weapon System). These can be mounted high on the superstructure, giving better range and firing arc. Sensors can also be installed high up without concerns for stability. This first ship will carry a turnkey system delivered by CSOC and CPMIEC China, including rapid fire CIWS, combat control and missile systems. The exact configuration of this system is still classified.

Accommodation is provided for a complement of twenty nine (officers and crew) on three internal decks (including bridge and combat control centre), with facilities and equipment also provided for deployment of special forces troops, including an 11m high speed 50 knot RIB, also manufactured and supplied by North Sea Boats.

Source: http://defense-update.com/20120906_kri-klewang-first-stealthy-trimaran-patrol-vessel-for-the-indonesian-navy.html

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Fire destroys brand new North Sea Boats 63m Stealth Fast Missile Patrol Vessel

A fire destroyed the Indonesian Navy’s

KRI KLEWANG-625 at the naval port in Banyuwangi, East Java on Friday just weeks after its official launch ceremony. The Fast Missile Patrol Vessel (FMPV) was officialy launched on Friday 31st August, 2012 at PT Lundin’s shipyard facility in Banyuwangi, East Java.

See the launch of the vessel at : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wSZCQZ5QCPE&feature=related

No casualties have been reported but the brand new vessel worth $12 million USD appears to be lost. The incident reportedly happened during maintenance. Indonesian Navy already announced that they would deploy a team to investigate the exact cause of the fire which lead to the loss of the trimaran vessel. Launched on Friday 31st August, 2012 at PT Lundin’s shipyard facility in Banyuwangi, East Java, the Fast Missile Patrol Vessel (FMPV) employs a modern “Wave Piercing” trimaran design. This allows the vessel to cut-through waves rather than rise up and over them, and the increased beam provides inherent stability. This combination of features reduces both pitching and rolling, creating a stable weapons platform, and enabling the vessel to comfortably and safely maintain higher average speeds in adverse conditions. The FMPV has “Stealth” design characteristics, and incorporate features that minimise detection by reducing Radar, Infra-Red, Acoustic and Magnetic signatures. Stealth properties are further improved as there are no reverse-angle bow overhangs to reflect radar signals, as seen on conventional hull forms. Weaponry, including missiles and naval guns, and the ships 11 m high-speed RHIB, are discreetly concealed or shaped to meld into the superstructure profile. PT Lundin will issue an official statement relating to the incident on Monday. 

See the fire onboard the KRI KLEWANG at :

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=pk-SIKhM78w#! Or

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3xRwc_yGdXM&feature=related

Source : Navyrecognition

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FIRE ONBOARD BRANDNEW KRI KLEWANG

A report was received that a ship on fire in Banyuwangi, the name reported was KRI Klewang which  was recently launched, and was berthed on the NAVY base ( LANAL ) in Banyuwangi for outfitting. It was reported that the cause of fire cause is a short circuit on engine room.

North Sea Boats launched the KRI KLEWANG as first of four advanced, stealthy, 63 meter trimaran patrol boats for the Indonesian Navy on August 31, 2012. Following the completion, extensive sea trials and testing commencing next month, the KRI KLEWANG was expected to be fully operational 2013. All four vessels are scheduled for delivery by 2014. The new vessel to be namedKRI KLEWANG (after a traditional Indonesian single edged sword) was launched at Banyuwagni, in Indonesia. Following the official launching the vessel will be fitted with mission systems and weapons, including a remotely controlled gun turret and anti-ship missiles. The four vessels are built at the PT Lundin shipyard in East Java.

Source: Industry Sources

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Trimaran Fire for the Indonesian Navy

There are a couple of nightmare scenarios for a naval vessel and fire is certainly among them. Our Navy runs countless drills to make sure the crew is ready in case of such an occurrence. While not our guys, this picture of the Indonesian Navy’s KRI Klewang-625 Trimaran in Banyuwangi, East Java is tragic:

A fire raged through the Indonesian Navy’s KRI Klewang-625 at the naval port in Banyuwangi, East Java on Friday at 3:15 p.m. No casualties have been reported but the Rp 114 billion (US$11.91 million) ship was severely damaged. (It’s gone, just a burnt out shell !)

Indonesian Eastern Fleet (Armatim) spokesman Lt. Col. Marine Yayan Sugiana told The Jakarta Post that the vessel was undergoing maintenance by its builder, PT Lundin Industry. “The vessel had yet to be officially handed over to the Navy. It was still undergoing maintenance checks by PT Lundin Industry,” he said.

The navy, however, said it would investigate the blaze, which lasted for two hours before fire fighters managed to extinguish it. “We will deploy a team to investigate the cause of the fire. We will use the report to evaluate the case,” he said.

PT Lundin Industry’s director, Lisa Lundin, said the company would deliver an official statement relating to the incident on Monday.

The good news is that there were no deaths aboard. The bad news is no more ship.

Source : Blogging from the Brig

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Navy trusts local shipyards despite accident

The Indonesian Navy says it will still rely on the domestic shipbuilding industry despite the fire that severely damaged locally produced KRI Klewang-625 on Friday.

The Rp 114 billion (US$11.91 million) vessel, made by local shipyard company PT Lundin Industry, caught fire when undergoing maintenance at the naval port in Banyuwangi, East Java.

The Tanjung Pinang Naval Base (Lantamal IV) commander, Commodore Agus Heryana, said on Sunday that the Navy would still use local shipyard PT Palindo Marine, which is currently constructing four missile boats.

Agus added that the Navy had not as yet increased monitoring of the Batam-based company to prevent such accidents from recurring. “The Navy has yet to deploy personnel to assist in ship construction. Everything remains normal here,” he told The Jakarta Post.

PT Palindo Marine has been commissioned to build four KCR-40 vessels to support the Navy’s weapons defense system. Two of the vessels, KRI Kujang 642 and KRI Clurit 641, were handed over to the Defense Ministry on Feb. 26 and April 25, respectively.

PT Palindo Marine is also building a 60-meter-long patrol vessel for the Marine Security Coordinating Agency (Bakorkamla).

PT Palindo Marine is one of many shipyards in Batam, Riau Islands. Batam’s shipyard industry grew significantly after the arrival of Singapore-based shipbuilders. The neighboring country has banned the operation of shipyards inside the country due to environmental concerns.

There are currently 90 shipyards across Riau Islands, with 71 percent of them located in Batam. The province’s shipyard industry is estimated to be worth US$3 billion. (yps/lfr)

Source : The Jakarta Post

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A few weeks back the Indonesian Navy were cock a hoop over the launching of their “secret project”.

They, and the small shipyard in Indonesia that built her, seemed justifiably proud, as it seemed that they had stolen a march within the region with the launching of an advanced Trimaran from the design office of Lomocean Ltd of New Zealand. The ship was said to be built with composites and had a stealthly appearance. She was named the “KRI Klewang” but was not yet officially launched.

Well perhaps they should have kept it a secret a bit longer.

On the 28th September the KRI Klewang caught fire whilst undergoing fit out and comissioning by the builder. Here are a few photos of the fire.

It looks as if she was completely destroyed with only a burnt out shell left.

There are videos of the fire on You Tube here and if you are interested, of the launching  on You Tube here, and here.

It is a bit sad to see her burning with only a ramshackle fire response “team”, with no protective gear, and armed with a single hose,  and only being able to approach from downwind. They didnt have a chance.

There is also a distinct lack of a fire boat or some such other capability.  That said it doesn’t really look like a shipyard in any case.

Goodbye KRI Klewang, you were nice while you lasted.

It’s worthwhile noting that the KRI Klewang was the big sister of “Earthrace”, the boat that holds the record of the fastest trip around the world by a powerboat. Earthrace was renamed “Ady Gil” and now sits at the bottom of the Southern Ocean after being rammed by the Japanese Whalers vessel, the “Shonan Maru”, whilst sailing on a Sea Shepherd voyage, aka “Whale Wars”

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Remember the “Sad News – Grey Pearl lost in Fire” well some Good News has now come along out of that, as the owners have now taken delivery of their new boat Ocean Pearl.

They have gone fron a Nordhavn 62

To a Nordhavn 64

This news is actually a few months old.

Here are a few photos of them with the new boat.

Many Congratulations to them. Let’s hope they make it back to Thailand to continue their Circumnavigation or complete unfinished cruising business in Phuket !

Their Blog seems down, but this is the Link to them  Grey Pearl – http://www.greypearl.talkspot.com/

and their buddy boat Seabird that is still in Phuket  Seabird – http://www.seabirdlrc.com/aspx/m/485656/beid/332541

Read the latest entry in Seabirds Log. They say some very good things about the works they had done on Seabird at Phuket.

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Came upon this interesting take on “Boat Asia 2012”, with some nice photos. I did’nt make it along to the show so interesting to get this persons account on the show. Must say it looks like the 2012 edition was quite a bit smaller than previous years shows. All credits to http://ponderouspilgrim.wordpress.com for the article and photos. Suggest you head over there to read the article in full and see all the photos in full detail.

The Ponderous Pilgrim

Reflections condominium, Boat Asia 2012, Marina @ Keppel BayBoat Asia 2012, Marina @ Keppel Bay
Boat Asia 2012, Marina @ Keppel BayBeneteau First 40.7, Boat Asia 2012, Marina @ Keppel Bay

Reflections at Keppel Bay condominium overlooking Boat Asia 2012, Marina @ Keppel Bay, Keppel Island. Was pleased to see the French Beneteau First 40.7 i spent 5 days on for my RYA competent crew cert.

Sea Bear, Boat Asia 2012, Marina @ Keppel BayGolf Clubs, Sea Bear, Boat Asia 2012, Marina @ Keppel Bay
Bed Room, Sea Bear, Boat Asia 2012, Marina @ Keppel BayBath room, Sea Bear, Boat Asia 2012, Marina @ Keppel Bay
Bath Tub, Sea Bear, Boat Asia 2012, Marina @ Keppel BayPGA Championship Room, Sea Bear, Boat Asia 2012, Marina @ Keppel Bay
PGA Championship Room, Sea Bear, Boat Asia 2012, Marina @ Keppel BayBathroom, Sea Bear, Boat Asia 2012, Marina @ Keppel Bay
Sea Bear, Boat Asia 2012, Marina @ Keppel BaySea Bear, Boat Asia 2012, Marina @ Keppel Bay

There was a long queue to see the Westport 130 christened “Sea Bear” which used to be owned by Jack Nicklaus (a visiting teen, unable to distinguish the two, thought it was Jack Nicholson’s). Decent enough interior, though “golf museum” it isn’t really, unless you count a bunch of clubs and rooms named after championships. We weren’t allowed to see the pilot house, which i was most curious about. For sale at S$60 million or rent.

The rest of the boats were rather entry-level crafts, probably pitched at the tentative new boat owner.

Boat Asia 2012, Marina @ Keppel BayBoat Asia 2012, Marina @ Keppel Bay

Sealine F42 and Sealine SC35, the latter being an entry-level ship. I thought the former quite practically-designed – decent…

View original post 546 more words

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Watched from my balcony as an afternoon Thunder Storm developed and swept in across from the West. Was fortunate enough to capture the following photo of a spectacular Lightning strike. In fact all told there were three Lightning flashes quickly repeated to the same spot. The subsequent Thunderclap rolled on for more than twenty seconds.

To be sure the people in that area must have been fairly impressed by the Light & Sound show all around them.

The building in the centre is the Singapore Indoor Stadium. The place where Lady Gaga will strut her weird stuff in a week or two.

“Lightning Strike”. All rights reserved. © Property of Bill Petrie. 10 May 2012

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The Boat is sold and delivered. That’s all good and all part of the plan, but a few irks !

After I bought the boat (ordered 2006, delivered 2007) I bought an apartment (2007) next to the Marina I kept the boat at. I always dreamed of living there and being able to look out the window to see how the boat was doing. Well I had to wait five years for the builder to complete all 1,100 apartments of the development, and in any case I’d decided to rent out the place, and well now the boat is Sold.

However now I see the new owner keeps her in the same Marina, in a berth just right in front of my apartment balcony !

Anyway no hard feelings, she is a great boat and she served me well for more than five years.

Why sell her then ? Well boating ideas change, and as boats get older they need more maintenance, and breakdowns will become more of a nuisance.

There is a phrase you often see on Yachtworld or anywhere with Used Boat ads, “Better than New”, that always means that the owner has “broken her in” and well ….fixed everything that crapped out for whatever reason after the boat was delivered.

I guess in the US or Australia, you just call the dealer and set a date for them to drop by to take a look. But when you buy direct from the Manufacturer, and they don’t have any servicing agent where you are based, well you deal with it yourself, and frankly that is the way I prefer it.

To their credit whenever I had a failure of an item under warranty (and even outside warranty), if they could, then Maritimo Australia would just send me a replacement by courier; No Questions.

But obviously there are times with things that you just have to deal with it yourself. I’ve done that for five years, and in the process always fixed or repaired/replaced anything that was broken or just wasn’t quite right. That might mean I fixed it or I got the guys whose work I trust to get onboard and work on it. (Well actually more of the latter)

I’ve always also determined that the boat should be kept clean and the Hull well polished. Gel coat is meant to shine so you can see your reflection ! That’s a lot of work, and mostly all done by hired help, but I think it’s worth it. Also she has been lifted out every year and antifouled regardless. Engines serviced with Lubes & all Filters changed annually regardless of the hours, and done by the Caterpillar agent.

Again that is a lot of work and expense, but when you go out in your boat, you want to be confident and relaxed that everything is in the best shape.

Is it all worth it ?

Obviously the guy who bought her thinks so, given he came up with a winning offer.

Good luck to him and I hope he has an enjoyable ownership of her. I believe she will be used by his family mostly for fishing around the region. He’s keeping the name AVA LON, which I like as there a strong reason behind the name, and that way I will always have a connection with her.

To the new owners, Fair Winds & Tight Lines !

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We left Telaga Harbour, Langkawi after taking fuel and completing outward clearances and made our way up towards Phuket with an overnight stop at Koh Rok Island Group. More on that Later. Weather for the day was overcast with Ocean Swell coming from the west, which varied from half to one metre.

The next day the swell was down, but NE winds kicked in. We made a pit stop at Chalong for inward clearances and then berthed later in the day at AoPo Grand Marina, Phuket, Thailand.

The overnight stop at Koh Rok, was ‘rolly’ as the ongoing swell still found it’s way round to the east of the Islands. Between that and the numerous shallow coral heads to watch out for, it was not the peaceful night we wished for.

Upon departure at first light, and after a night of wallowing and rolling around, we’ve inducted Koh Rok into the Hall Of Fame, and it shall henceforth be known as Koh RocknRoll.

Sawwadee Kap

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Just back from time on the boat in Langkawi. Nice protected cruising and quiet bays.

I’ve also uploaded three Video’s made of the trip from Singapore to Langkawi. We made the trip over three days in mid October, with stopovers at Admiral Marina, Port Dickson, and Pangkor Marina, Lumut.

We had three days of mostly beautiful weather with flat seas and blue skies, with just a few hours of rain squalls and thunderstorms in between Penang and Langkawi. It all cleared up right on cue for our run into Rebak Marina, Langkawi.

All in all, a great and easy trip.

Expect to be up in Phuket, Thailand in December.

Follow this link to the YouTube Video channel, and take a look at the three new Video’s from the trip.

http://tinyurl.com/3r2gzrm

Thanks.

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