Category Archives: Weekly News

Yarrrrr Me’hartys its the weekly news #17

September 19 is talk like a pirate day. in that vein, this post has a parrot on its shoulder.

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1.AOPS1 Launched
the future HMCS Harry Dewolf Launched at the shipyard. we Covered it Here, here and here, plus the Front page of the Herald.

2. Ioffe repaired
I was told that as of Sept 13th repairs are complete. she sailed for Kugaaruk, where she will met a TC inspector who cleared the Ioffe to sail. She will be escorted through the Ice by CCGS Henry Larsen, bound for Les Mechins PQ, where Verreault Navigation has a large dry dock. Her ETA is the 24th, 1 month from when she grounded. Updates posted here.

3.Kingston class guns dispersed

MCDV’s now feature a large table forward.
The 40mm Bofors, dating to the second world war have been striped from the Kingston class MCDV’s, and will be installed in their Name Sake Cities.

4.Tidal Turbines
The open Hydro turbine is broken, and not spinning. I heard speculation that the turbine actually broke just after it was re-deployed, which is what caused the French parent company of Open Hydro to pull the plug.

Black rock tidal put  their test platform in the water for the first time, and will be deploying it in  Grand Passage. this unit was previously used in Scotland, and set power production records there. We covered the various turbines in this post.

5. Tag your.. a shark?!
DFO tagged its first Shark off Nova Scotia. Ocearch is in town to also run a shark tagging expedition. these are the folks who tagged Hilton the Shark , who summers of NS.

6.Cook’s ship Found

HMB Endeavour, the ship commanded by James Cook, has been found off the coast of the US.


Atlantic Raven Spent the weekend at woodside, departing for the west coast via panama

HMS Monomonth and HMS Queen Elizabeth II are in Norfolk VA. (Above, RN Photo Via twitter)


Port History of Ch’town

I recently discovered Sailstrait  which describes itself as “Telling the stories of the history of the port of Charlottetown and the marine heritage of Northumberland Strait on Canada’s East Coast.”

the above tweet possibly relates to this story about cars passing through ports, and at least in Montreal, Police Not Caring.


Sept 18, 1809 – 6 seamen are executed for mutiny on the sloop HMS Colombine. They were tarred and hung in iron cages on McNabs Is.

Sept. 17, 1949 – The S.S. Noronic catches fire – Toronto’s greatest single loss of life tragedy with at least 118 lives lost.

Sept 16, 1939 – HX1, the first convoy bound for Great Britain in WWII leaves Halifax
Sept 14, 1942 –  The aircraft carrier USS Wasp was sunk by the Japanese submarine I-19.

Sept 8, 1942 -SS Norfolk, ex-Glenbuckie (Canada Steamship Lines, Montreal) struck by two torpedoes from U 175, sinking in less than a minute, off British Guiana

Man jumps overboard, Arrested Naked. the News #16

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News leaps from ferry, arrested naked in woman’s house
CBC reports on a man who released a life raft, jumped overboard, and swam for shore from a B.C ferry.

2.ZIM still hanging on

in an era of aliances, zim is still going it alone, and still loosing a ton of money. The Loadstar reveals ZIM‘s future prospects

3. The Acadia is rusting
CSS Acadia, the only ship still afloat to survive the Halifax Explosion, and serve in both world wars is in danger of sinking. Her hull has rusted through, and her below decks are full of Mold. See also Global, and the Herald

4.Plastic in the ocean
CBC Reports that there is alot of it, and its really small.

5.Sunken Whale Ship found
the RCGS found a Scottish whaling ship that sunk in 1903. the discovery was made Aug 31, from the Adkelmelik Sergey Villow – the other vessel working for One Ocean in the Arctic.

6.CMA-CGM Cuts Container rates.
sending a container around the world is cheap. it just got cheaper.

7. Cruise Issues.

it was a bad weekend for cruise ships, with weather, mechanical and MOB issues.




Sept 11 1944 -HMCS Hespeler and HMCS Dunver sank U-484
Sept 11, 1942 -HMCS Charlottetown sunk by U-517 off Cap Chat PQ.

Sept 10 1941- HMCS Chambly and HMCS Moose Jaw sank U-501 – the first sub sunk by Canadians in the war.

Sept 9 1920 –  the whale ship Charles W. Morgan set sail on her last voyage. she as preserved and restored and is now atMystic Seaport.

Sept 7 1891- the first bridge across the harbour washes away in a hurricane.

Sept 6,1620 – the Mayflower departs England for the new world.

The Floggings will Continue until they are Historically Accurate – the News #15

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1. The Floggings will Continue..
the National Post reports on the case of 2 rival Pirate troupes who have a disagreement over the carriage of floggers.

2. Frigate Upgrades
Janes is reporting that DND is buying an additional decoy launcher for the stern of the the Halifax Class Frigates. the ships are already equipped with 2, one on each bridge wing.

3.Dead Tree.
I had an article in yesterdays Chronicle Herald. You can find it Online .  Continued updates on the grounding will be posted at


Bluenose is in Boston. HMCS Kingston returned from OP Nanook in the North. Cruise Ship Anthem of the Seas turned around off Herring Cove last week while outbound to drop off a sick passenger.


MOB Drill


Sept 2, 1998 –  Swiss Air Flight 111 crashed near Peggy’s Cove, NS. All 229 aboard were killed.
Sept 1, 1985 – An expedition led by Dr Robert Ballard located the wreckage of TITANIC
Aug 30 1943 – HMCS Haida is Commissioned. She is now a Museum operated by Parks Canada in Hamilton.
Aug 29, 1942 – 1st course of 67 probationary ‘Wrens” for the newly created Women’s Royal Canadian Naval Service begins at Kingsmill House, in Ottawa.
Aug 27, 1960 – Replica of HMS Bounty launched at Lunenburg. She was built  for the MGM movie staring Marlon Brando. She Sank in a hurricane in 2012.

Fire, Ice and Rock – The Weekly News #14

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1. Oceanex Fire

In the early morning hours of August 16th, the Oceanex Connaigra bound for Montreal from St. Johns Newfoundland suffered a fire in her cargo hold. She docked in Trois Riveres Quebec, where the local fire department extinguished the fire, and the ship continued on later that morning. Oceanex Tweeted that “a fire was reported on a piece of equipment being carried onboard Oceanex Connaigra . It has been extinguished and confirmed there are no injuries.” and that “there is no damage to the vessel or its cargo.” Oceanex Connaigra is the Newest vessel in Oceanex’s fleet of ships, she runs a weekly service between St. Johns and Montreal with Oceanex Avalon. She was built in Germany, and entered service in October 2013. 

2. Laker to the East Coast.
Canada steamship lines’ trillium class laker Thunder bay is doing an east coast run. She sailed from Thunder Bay on Lake Superior to Sydney N.S., before moving through the locks at canso to load rock, for Charlottetown PEI. Built in China, and intended for inland waters, the trillium class lakers crossed the ocean with extra reinforcing to deal with ocean swell. This trip is notable as it’s the first coastal trip for this class of ship since they entered the lakes

3. Saudies and grain
the current diplomatic spat with the saudis may cause problems for G3 (Global Grain Growers), which is what the Canadian Wheat Board became after privatization in 2012. the Ownership is G3 is 49.9% with Canadian Farmers, and the 50.1 held by a Joint Venture with Bunge Canada and SALIC – the Saudi Agricultural and livestock investment company. originally the joint venture was a 50/50 split, but SALIC bought half of Bunge’s share, and now controls 37% of g3. G3 controls a number of terminals, and owns one bulk carrier G3 Marquis  operated by Algoma.

4. Dutch Runner Sails
former Halifax regular Dutch Runner has sailed for the Caribbean, for a shipyard in the Dominican Republic. The ship has been idle, since the contract for the Saint Pierre Run went to Fusion, and then Nolhanava.

5. Ice Breakers Arrive

the 3 AHST’s purchased by Davie for conversion for the Coast Guard arrived in Quebec Monday.


1. Cargo Cruising
Halifax Magazine interviews a Couple that crossed the Atlantic on the Atlantic Star.

2. Old Ads

Admiral John Newton – @greatbigseas on twitter, tweeted some old Halifax maritime ads.

3. Dun-duh dun-duh


AUgust 28, 1942 – HMCS Oakville sank U-94 in the Caribbean. Her quick thinking crew boarded it before it sank and snagged vital documents. The Movie U-571 gave credit to the Americans.

August 24, 1990 – Canadian Warships Terra Nova, Athabaskan and Preserver depart for the (first) Gulf war. Terra Nova was hastily fitted with gear meant for the then under construction CPF’s.

August 23, 1750 – The ship Alderney arrives at Halifax with 370 volunteer settlers, who would go on to settle and found East Halifax (Dartmouth)

August 22,1944 -the Canadian Crewed escort carrier HMS NABOB torpedoed by U354, in Barents Sea, killing 21. Effective damage control saved the ship and she arrived at Scapa Flow under her own power.

Old Boats, and Arrows – Weekly News #13

if you like, consider becoming a member. 2$ a month really helps cover costs, and in return you get the site Ad Free.  For latest port conditions, Including Weather,Wind, Tides, Arrivals and Departures be sure to visit the Port Report (Members get the information in realtime, not every 2 hours)


1.Back to Norway
Roald Admunsen’s ship Maud has been raised and returned to Norway.

2. HMS Queen Elizabeth goes to America
the Royal Navy’s new Aircraft Carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth is headed to America for tests with the F-35B. the F35-B variant is the vertical takeoff model, and is the aircraft the new british carriers were designed to Carry.

She was due to sail from Portsmouth, Aug 18, at 1800 local time.

3. 1907 Yacht Sails at Chester Race week.

The CH has an article about the Seneca – a yacht built in 1907, and still racing 111 years later

4. $$ for Harbours
Ottawa is set to spend $42million on Small Craft Harbours in Nova Scotia. Harbours being improved will be announced next week.


1. Wear your PFD
the port of Summerside PEI is enforcing TC rules requiring a PFD within 1m of the edge of he Wharf, even for people who arn’t working. I wonder if Pants would work.

2. Avro Arrow Models found


Aug 22 1731 – a lighthouse was erected at Louisbourg, by the French; the first in Canada and the 2nd in the New World. Louis XIV was king of France at the time.

Aug 21 1944 – HMCS Alberni is sunk by mine off St. Catherine’s Point, England. Thirty nine were lost.

Aug 20 1956 –  major fire at the Irving Oil Plant threatened the Halifax waterfront. HMC Dockyard and @hfxfire poured a million gallons of water on the fire

Aug 20, 1864 – The Confederate cruiser, Tallahasee, escaped from Halifax harbour through  Eastern Passage. The Union Navy was waiting outside the normal approaches to the harbour.

Aug 18, 1833 – The Royal William sailed from Pictou to England, proving a steamship could speedily make the transatlantic crossing. the Ship was funded by Brwer John Molson, and Samual Cunard.


Cats of the Royal Navy – Weekly News #12

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For latest port conditions, Including Weather,Wind, Tides, Arrivals and Departures be sure to visit the Port Report (Members get the information in realtime, not every 2 hours)


1.TEU’s By Port
Halifax has handled just under 276,000 TEU in the first half of 2018. Here is how that stacks up with other Ports:

for Comparison,  Vancouver did 1,637,440 TEU, and Montreal 813,665 TEU

2. Fires
A boat from the Discovery Series Cold Water Cowboys caught fire in Twillingate. In Vancouver, A barge loaded with crushed cars caught fire off Surrey.

3.Tidal Power
Emera has withdrawn from the Cape Sharp Tidal project, saying with open hydro’s insolvency, there is no point in continuing the venture. The turbine however remains on the ocean floor, and BBC Shipping has a Lein on the barge required to remove it.

4.NSP Spill Bigger then Reported
CTV News is reporting that the Oil spilled at tufts cove is actually 5 times larger then the Less then 5000 liters NSP originally reported. the other 19000 liters was contained to NSP’s property and didn’t enter the harbour.

5. Port goes digital
The Port of Halifax announced it has joined the IBM/Maersk led Tradelens. Tradelens uses blockchain to do stuff with logistics tracking. The port also is publicly tracking container dwell time, and other key performance metrics. you can check it out yourself at!/

Ship Movements

3 new vessels showed up in the past few days, all of which i missed. Alexandra At Fairview cove, and Seamax Stamford and San Allesio for Maersk at Halterm. Nirint’s ship Augusta Sun spent a week tied up at the ocean terminals, while they resolved a mechanical issue. they reloaded containers, and sailed yesterday (Aug 14th)


1.The Most Important RN Cats

The Royal Navy Banned cats on ship in 1975, However, up until that point, they played an important role in Ships life. to that end, complied a list of the top 10 RN Cat photos.

One small issue – only 9 are RN Cats. one appears to be the Late Erik the Red, who served as the Maritime Museums Rodent Control officer, aboard CSS Acadia.

2. Fire Boat Failure
You may remember the fiasco that was the Halifax Fire Boat. the department bought a new boat from a California firm, despite objections from the Nova Scotia Boat building Industry. anyway, it rolled over and sank on trials.

Someone has found video of it being towed back to the dock by the Coast Guard.


August 15, 1914 – the Panama Canal Opens

August 11, 1968 – Angus James Walters died (b. in #Lunenburg, 1881). He was athe first captain of the Bluenose from 1921 to 1938, winning five international sailing races and was undefeated for seventeen years.

August 10, 1628 – the Swedish warship Vasa sinks on her maiden voyage. 300+ years later she was raised, and is preserved in a museum.

Navigation Troubles

Your Camouflage Game is Weak – News #11

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For latest port conditions, Including Weather,Wind, Tides, Arrivals and Departures be sure to visit the Port Report (Members get the information in realtime, not every 2 hours)


1. Harbour Hoppers.
After my article about the safety of the Harbour Hoppers, Halifax Today and  the Herald ran articles on the safety of the Vehicles. Indecently the preliminary report from the NTSB has been released. U.S. Coast Guard announced that it was convening a Marine Accident Board to investigate the accident.

2.Trade War and Boats
Apparently the Trump trade war is Causing headaches for US Boatbuilders – Both driving up their input costs, and adding 25% cost to buyers. Since Canada has free trade with Europe (And a large supply of aluminum) this could be good news for domestic industry.

3.New Scallop Vessel

Comeau’s Sea Foods, based in Saulnierville NS, has ordered a new Factory Scallop fishing vessel. The ship will be built in Spain, but was designed by Bedford based Allswater Marine. It is expected to be delivered in 2020. The ship will be named Lady Comeau III after Thérèse Comeau, the wife of Comeau’s Sea Foods founder, Bernardin Comeau.


1. GTS Katy Incident
This Twitter thread is interesting- it tells the story of the GTS Katie, a commercial ship carrying military equipment back to Canada. A dispute among the ship owners and the company hired by the military to bring our kit back, so the ship was ordered not to enter Canadian Waters by her owners.

In the End the ship was Boarded,  arrested, and escorted to a Canadian port.

2. Container Ship Cruising
JOC has a piece on a Container ship Cruise. recall you can actually sail to Vancouver from Halifax on CMA-CGM’s Columbus loop.

3. Hiding Ships
We are all familiar with dazzle schemes used in the first and Second world wars. It was meant to Disrupt the eye and make ships courses harder to determine. It was Proposed by Painter Norman Wilkinson (who painted Canada’s Answer), In part to Discredit the Cubist Movement. (How can it be art, if its Utilitarian) Clever – but then I came across this Tweet

after which, I was sent the image below of a Swedish warship.


Aug 7, 1996 – After spending 26years on the bottom, the Oil Barge Irving whale is raised, and the hulk towed into Halifax. She still sails today as the deck barge Atlantic Sealion

Aug 6, 1942 – HMCS Assiniboine rams and sinks German submarine U-210 south of Greenland

Aug 3, 1492 – Christopher Columbus, working for Spain, sailed for the Orient, But found south America

Aug ,1 1798 – The battle of the Nile – The British defeat the French fleet.


Wednesday is the new Thursday – Weekly News #10

Help keep the Lights On! Yesterday I tweeted a map of all the harbour traffic that passed through Halifax in one month. there is a couple hundred dollars of equipment required to provide the realtime positions of ships in the harbour, and its been replaced once since it went into operations.   if you like, consider becoming a member. 2$ a month really helps cover costs, and in return you get the site Ad Free.

For latest port conditions, Including Weather,Wind, Tides, Arrivals and Departures be sure to visit the Port Report (Members get the information in realtime, not every 2 hours)


1. Fishing Gear and Whales
A couple of university students are developing rope-less fishing gear –  there is actually still a rope, but it will only deploy when the gear needs to be retrieved. Timely, as there are reports of a Right whale tangled in gear in the Mouth of the Bay of Fundy. Rescuers are hampered by weather trying to find the Whale.

2.Tidal Power
apparently the French Naval Defense Firm DCNS has applied to shutdown OpenHydro, and liquidate it. the Company that is working with Emera in a joint venture Cape Sharp Tidal, to test turbines in the Bay of Fundy. the project just installed their second turbine last week.

Apparently the bankruptcy was known to the company before the turbine was installed, and has potentially left many Local businesses holding the bag.

This may be something that makes sense for Emera to buy outright. given the interest in Oceans sector research in Nova Scotia, and as a source of Renewable Power – this could be a great thing – certainly better then Wind Tubine parts.

3.Shearwater Turns 100
Shearwater began life in the waning days of the first world war as a Naval Air Station. today, 100 years later, it still serves in that capacity. Of note, Seakings have been flying from that base for more then half of its existence. (Seakings are to be retired in December, 55 years after entering service).

4.Yarmouth Ferry
A Maine company has submitted a proposal to operate a ferry between bar Harbor and Yarmouth. Seemingly a more modest operation then bay Ferries Cat, they seem to think they can make a go of it. BFL is also proposing to relocate from Portland to Bar Harbor to save fuel costs.

5. Wednesdays.
Im moving news bits to Wednesdays. hump day seems to be a better fit then Thursday.


1.Small Craft Advisory?!?

2. Nautical History.
I stumbled across the blog of author Phillip K. Allen its full of interesting nautical history, including this description of a Upper class, Victorian tattoo. apparently

Lord Charles Beresford, a distinguished rear admiral… is said to have had a large tattoo of the hounds of the Waterford Hunt in full cry. The dogs poured over his shoulder and down his back in pursuit of a fox. Only the tail of the fox was visible, the rest of the animal having apparently disappeared up Admiral Beresford’s arse.

SO yah – Check out the blog – its relatively new, but good.

So On that Tattoo.. the internet has turned up no pictures of that, though there is apparently one (or one like it) in Desmond Morris, Bodywatching (1985), 179.  and the British parlement’s Hansard turns up descriptions of it in Tattoo Debates.

(Thats Beresford and his Bull dog on the right)

Week in History

July 31 1970 – Black Tot Day – this was the last day on which the Royal Navy issued sailors with a daily rum ration. Canada Followed suit on March 31,1972.

July 31 1942 – An Order in Council creates the Women’s Royal Canadian Naval Service (WRCNS). Nearly 6,500 women will enlist for service during WWII. Also on this Date, HMCS Skeena and  HMCS Wetaskiwin sink the German submarine U-588 mid-Atlantic.

July 30 1768 – James Cooks first voyage to the pacific is Authorized by the Admiralty. Prior to his pacific trips Cook spent time in Canada, charting Halifax and Newfoundland, taking part in the Siege of Quebec, and the Fall of Louisbourg.

July 29 1572 – A small fleet of English ships commanded by Sir Francis Drake, attacked Nombre Di Dios,in modern day panama, making off with silver.
July 27 1758 – Louisbourg falls to the British for the final time.


Think Pink and other Weekly News #9

Small Change to the Site – We have Gone (Mostly) HTTPS. this means our pages will be delivered to your browser securely with encryption. If your browser gives you warnings about insecure content – Just ignore them.

For latest port conditions, Including Weather,Wind, Tides, Arrivals and Departures be sure to visit the Port Report


1.Navy Movements
HMCS St. Johns returned from her 6 month Mediterranean deployment on the 23rd.

HMCS Moncton Visited HMCS Haida in Hamilton on her Summer Lakes tour.

the 3 Japanese shipping companies, NYK, MOL and K Line have merged their container businesses and form ONE – Ocean Network Express. its hard to miss their containers which recently started showing up in Halifax – they are pink. They have also started rebranding ships – I cant wait to see one – its a bold Look.

3.Drill Baby Drill
BP has been permitted to restart Drilling after spilling 136 cubic Meters of drilling mud due to a loose connection in a line.

Passenger numbers on the Yarmouth ferry for June 2018 declined 13% from the June 2017 numbers — 7,677 to 6,701. Nova Scotia doesn’t release the numbers but Bay ferries is required to report them the the city of Portland, and they are required to release them. Halifax Examiner has the Full report from Portland.

5. UK Halts Type 31 Frigate Procurement
Janes is reporting the MOD halted the Type 31 Frigate Procurement citing lack of compliant bids. the type 31 are meant to be a lighter class of frigate compared to the type 26 currently under construction (A variant of which was submitted for the CSC)

6.Duck Boat Update
the Duckboat that Sank in Branson Killing 17 has been raised from the lake by the USCG. Halifax’s own Harbour Hoppers are well maintained, Regulated, and more capable vehicle. We wrote about Previous incidents and Hopper Safety


this twitter thread is brilliantly hilarious – a history of the military use of the Selfie Stick.


In History

July 25 1797 -Rear Admiral Sir Horatio Nelson loses his right arm during the unsuccessful attack on Santa Cruz, Tenerife. After taking a Musket ball to the Arm, Nelson demanded: “Dr, I want to get rid of this useless piece of flesh here”. The severed arm was disposed of overboard

July 23 1963 – The Bluenose II was launched in Lunenburg.

July 22 1883 – The Clipper Ship Marco Polo ran aground on PEI, she was a total loss
July 17 1840 – Steamer RMS Britannia arrives in Halifax 12.5 days after leaving Liverpool England. She was the first ship of the Cunard Steamship Company.


Whale penis’ and Sea Monsters Unmasked – Weekly News Bits #9

there have been some site issues we are trying to work through with the host lately. thanks for your patience. expect some weirdness in the coming weeks. Also i know I’m a day late – i had minor surgery yesterday.


Container Consolidation
ZIM and the 2M Alliance (MSC & Maersk) have agreed to consolidate routes from Asia to the US East Coast. 2M Currently runs 5 routes, and ZIM 2. No word on what the changes will be, or how they will affect Halifax Traffic.

Lost Shipwreck
A shipwreck turned up in England in 2016, after she was partially exposed, buried in sand. it is now believed to be a Vessel called the AVON, built in Windsor NS in 1843.

Bail for Drug Smugglers
the 3 men arrested for attempting to import drugs in a sea chest of the Container ship Arcia were released on bail this week. The case is also now under a publication ban, so no further details will become public until after the trial concludes.


1.Sea Monsters

recently I came across a suggestion that old accounts of sea monster sightings were probably actually sightings of Whale Penis’. this led to an Article on Norwegian Sea Serpents which then led me to a book produced for the international fisheries exhibition, London in 1883 called Sea Monsters Unmasked(PDF).

This Week in the News.

July 18 1945 – the Naval Magazine Jetty in the Bedford Basin Explodes.

July 17 1749 – the First Liquor License is granted to The Double Eagle. Located on the north corner of Salter and Lower Water St. It is the spiritual Predecessor of the Modern Spilt Crow.

July 16 1947 – Tribal Destroyer HMCS Micmac collides with the SS Yarmouth of Halifax, Killing 10 and Injuring 15.
July 16 1915 – the US Navy Battleships USS Ohio, Missouri and Wisconsin transit the Panama Canal from the Atlantic to the Pacific. When the US took over Canal Construction, the lock size was increased to accommodate the Warships.

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