Great Barrier Reef: Ship Detained Over ECDIS Training

African Alke

Published May 27, 2016 4:51 PM by The Maritime Executive

A Panamanian-flagged geared bulk carrier has been detained after sailing through the Great Barrier Reef without its crew knowing how to use the ship’s ECDIS.

The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) detained the African Alke in Brisbane on Thursday after a port state control inspection found the 177-metre (580-foot) ship's bridge watch-keeping officers were unable to demonstrate that they could operate the system.

The ship's operators have flown an ECDIS trainer in from Singapore to train the crew.

AMSA will release the ship from detention once it is satisfied the crew have been trained to an appropriate standard and can demonstrate the expected level of competency. A spokesman said that there has been no indication that the vessel sailed off course as it passed through Australian waters.

Local media reports that a spokesman for the ship's charterer, a joint venture between Jebmur and MUR Shipping, said the ship was managed by Japan-based B&S Enterprises.

The vessel made its maiden voyage in April this year and is currently berthed in Brisbane.