Category Archives: General Cargo

2 ships collide in Welland Canal.

CHCH News in Hamilton interviewed me yesterday via Facetime about my thoughts on the collision between the Alanis and Florence Spirit in the Welland Canal which occurred July 11th. The Canal, and entire lakes shipping industry got lucky that neither ship sunk. You can see the interview here.

The collision was caught by at least two individuals who were out watching ships. the two video’s of the collision are included below. both of these videos were pretty promptly posted to Social Media.

in what was likely a steering failure, the general cargo ship Alanis loaded with wind turbine parts bound for Cleveland, and the bulker Florence Spirit, Port Colburn for Grand Anse PQ collided. It looks as though the Florence Spirit crossed the channel in front of the Alanis, in the video an alarm can be heard sounding prior to the collision.

The Welland Canal. the Collision occurred just above the current location of the Florence Spirit.

had the Florence Spirit sunk, across the canal, it could have taken weeks or months to clear the vessel. Photos of the Florence Spirit taken after the collision show it listing and down in the bow, suggesting that the hull was punctured by the Bulbous bow of the Alanis.

Despite Pilots being aboard the vessel, they can do little in the case of a machinery issue. a blockage in the canal would trap ships on both sides of the canal, and would have major trade impacts due to the quantities of bulk product that moves through the canal, including Grain and Iron Ore. Perhaps its time to consider compulsory tugs for vessels transiting the canal.

The Welland Canal is located in Ontario. The 43 km passage is part of the St. Lawrence Seaway system, connecting Lake Ontario and Lake Erie through the Niagara Peninsula. It enables ships to bypass the Niagara Falls.

Approximately 40million tonnes of cargo are carried through the Canal each year by some 3,000 vessels,of various types. These vessels are comprised of ocean-going vessels, along with Canadian and U.S. lakers.

Wilson Mistral with Anchors.

the general cargo ship Wilson Mistral arrived just after midnight, and tied up at pier 9. Loaded with anchors and Chains, these will be installed in Mulgrave by the Horizon Arctic (due in Halifax July 6) to hold the Boa Barge in place with the Deep Panuke Production platform aboard.

the ship arrived from Montrose, Scotland, and is very small.

the ship is due to move to pier 27, likely for fuel, at 10pm tonight.

Ocean Force riding the hook.

Ocean Force has spent the past several days at anchor in the Basin. the ship first arrived in Halifax in August to fill in for the Nolhan Ava on the Saint Pierre run. With the return of the Nolhan Ava, the ship took to the basin after completing its last trip.

Nolhan Ava it now operating on a service between Halifax and Argentia, NL. its unclear what the change will mean for the Saint Pierre Service, As the ship is now operated by a Dartmouth based Subsidiary of the company that ran the Saint Pierre Service.

There was some thought that the Ocean Force would take over that route, though that is unclear at this point. Also muddying the waters is the fact that the Nolhan Ava was re-flagged to Canada in August 2018, and has been making regular calls in Argentia after stopping in Saint Pierre. It looks as though on this first run, the ship stopped at Saint Pierre after Argentia.

Acadia Desgagnes Sails

The Acadia Desgagnes spent time tied up at pier 25 to return to the Canadian Flag. The ship works in arctic during the summer season, and is chartered out internationally for the winter under the Barbados flag.

Built in China in 2013, the ship features 3 holds, 2x 40ton cranes, and can carry 164teu on Deck. The ship sailed yesterday evening for Pugwash to load salt.

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