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Sunday, October 21, 2018


We have been notified by a member of an incident at the Suez Oil Berth operated by Suez Oil Processing Co. and owned by Egyptian General Petroleum Corp. The vessel concerned whilst manoeuvring at the berth came into contact with a mooring dolphin.

The contact was slight and such that an adequately maintained dolphin should ordinarily have been able to withstand. Whilst damage was sustained to the dolphin, there was a complete absence of shell plating damage to the vessel. The owners of dolphin alleged that the damage to their property was due to the vessel and consequently arrested owners’ vessel and claimed substantial damages. A firm of surveyors was commissioned to report on the damage sustained by the dolphin. The report concluded that much of the damage was pre-existing and had not been caused by the vessel.

Despite the overwhelming evidence in owners’ favour the owners of the dolphin persisted with their claim. The vessel was eventually released after the claimants accepted security in the form of a bank guarantee. However, the delay to the vessel’s sailing caused owners considerable losses.

Members are advised to exercise extra caution at the Suez Oil Berth. Furthermore, owners may wish to consider issuing a protest if they consider the standard of a mooring dolphin or other structure to be inadequate and not able to withstand normal operational use. If a claim does arise it is important that owners ensure that a comprehensive independent surveyor’s report is obtained.

INTERTANKO is aware that this type of incident has become something of a trend in various ports around the world which lack modern infrastructure. Should any members face claims of this nature please would they contact us for assistance.

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