Please select your home edition
Edition
Safety at Sea - Baltic - 2

Stricken ship's Master arrested as containers topple in Rena Disaster

by Richard Gladwell, Sail-World on 12 Oct 2011
MV Rena grounded on Astrolabe Reef, Tauranga. She is beam on to four metre seas. The protruding section of the reef can be seen in the white water to the right of the shot New Zealand Defence Force

There have been three significant developments in the Rena Disaster.

Seventy containers have fallen off the ship overnight as she continues to be pounded by 4-5 metre seas off Tauranga. More expected to come off as the adverse weather continues. The containers stacked in the stern, which have broken free were earlier said to be empty.

The Rena's Master has been arrested and appeared in the Tauranga District Court at 1000hrs, Wednesday morning (NZT). On Wednesday evening it was announced that the second officer, who was in charge of the navigational watch of the vessel Rena, is facing one charge laid by Maritime New Zealand (MNZ) under section 65 of the Maritime Transport Act (MTA) 1994, 'for operating a vessel in a manner causing unnecessary danger or risk'.

He will appear in the Tauranga District Court at 10am on Thursday 13 October.

The issue of hull deformation is advised by those who flew over the Rena, this morning, and it was seen for the first time. By early afternoon it was reported to have split open amidships, and moves were being made to try and prevent the stern breaking off completely.

The breaking up of the Rena is not unexpected and was predicted in a story in Sail-World on Sunday evening http://www.sail-world.com/UK/Predicted-heavy-winds-could-trigger-container-ship-trigger-breakup/89405!Click_here that this would happen today, Wednesday.








A statement issued this morning by Maritime NZ reads:

The Master of the vessel Rena has been arrested and charged by Maritime New Zealand (MNZ) under section 65 of the Maritime Transport Act (MTA) 1994, 'for operating a vessel in a manner causing unnecessary danger or risk'.

He will appear in the Tauranga District Court this morning (Wednesday 12 October).

One s65 MTA charge has been laid, but it is likely more charges may follow.

The s65 charge carries a maximum penalty of $10,000, or a maximum term of imprisonment of 12 months.

MNZ will make no further comment while the matter is before the courts.



There is no further information on more oil release, after 350 tonnes were reported to have been released yesterday.

According to www.predictwind.com!Predictwind the winds will increase today, Wednesday, before easing, however the large swells will stay in until Thursday before easing slightly. The incident has been declared to be the biggest maritime environmental disaster in NZ's history. Outflow of oil increased tenfold today with up to 350 tonnes being released from the ship.

In an earlier release Maritime NZ advised that shipping had been re-routed.


Approximately 70 containers have come off the Rena and are now in the water.

It is highly likely that more will come off due to the current severe weather conditions and the vessel’s heavy list.

Once an aerial survey is completed, there will be a clearer picture of exactly how many containers have come adrift. This aerial survey will go ahead today once the weather has cleared and the sea conditions have improved.

There are 1368 containers on board. Eleven containers containing hazardous substances are still on the vessel and are not among the 70 estimated overboard.

Navigational warnings have been issued to mariners and major shipping has been re-routed.

Containers are likely to wash up on the beaches and if you see any, please call 0800 OIL SPILL (645 774).

The contents of the containers remain the property of the owners. It is an offence to take any property from the containers and anyone doing so can expect to be prosecuted.


Last Wednesday the 236 metre container ship, Rena, hit the Astrolabe Reef just off Tauranga harbour New Zealand. She was traveling at 17knots, when she hit the well-known reef at 2.20am.

She has stuck fast with her bow in the reef. A massive salvage operation is getting underway some five days after the incident.

Rena has 1700 tonnes of fuel oil aboard and if this is released into the pristine coastal area it will be the most serious environmental disaster in New Zealand's history.


After the first day of a storm onshore seas have caused the Rena to shift, and come more upright. While the authorities claim that this is a result of rock crushing below her bow, it may also be further crushing of the ships hull - depending on which is the more sacrificial surface. As expected more oil was released from either cracked bow tanks (which are being pumped aft) or from the keel duct which contains 100 tonnes of oil which cannot be accessed by the salvage team.

The amount of oil now released (370 tonnes) exceeds the amount previously stated to be in the keel duct, indicating that a fuel tank may have been ruptured.

It was stated this morning that bringing a floating crane from Singapore to offload containers would take a month. There is no crane in NZ with sufficient height to get to the top of the container stack. It would seem that Mother Nature is doing what Man cannot.

The salvage team has now set up a permanent base in a vacant supermarket, with about 200 people on site on a single floor, with the expectation that this recovery operation will take several months, rather than weeks.

More images can be viewed by http://www.stuff.co.nz/5736817/Rena-stuck-on-Astrolabe-Reef!clicking_here



Related Articles

America’s Cup Series – Franck Cammas back at helm of Groupama Team
The second event of the 2016 season, the Defender and Challengers meet again, this time in New York City. Last February, the French challenge, led by Franck Cammas, Michel Desjoyeaux and Olivier de Kersauson welcomed an agreement for five years of support from their new official partner
Posted today at 4:45 pm
Skiing superstar joins America's Cup on foils with Oracle Team USA
The legendary skier took the grinder position as the boat was flying on Hudson River in front of the Statue of Liberty. Invited by Oracle Team USA skipper Jimmy Spithill (AUS), the legendary skier took over the grinder position as the boat was flying on the Hudson River in front of the Statue of Liberty.
Posted today at 4:15 pm
IchorCoal makes surprising progress at Clipper Race Panama Cup
There have been big positional changes across the fleet in the last 24 hours with Unicef moving up to third Yesterday’s leader LMAX Exchange is now sixth and remains the closest inshore team, while Garmin, now in seventh, has joined the rest of the fleet further offshore.
Posted today at 11:29 am
2015 -16 Clipper Round the World Yacht Race - Life as an ocean racer
On the Mighty Pacific leg we hosted two Andrew Simpson Sailing Foundation (ASSF) youth ambassadors. 2015 -16 Clipper Round the World Yacht Race - On the Mighty Pacific leg we hosted two Andrew Simpson Sailing Foundation (ASSF) youth ambassadors. The opportunity was donated by Clipper Race founder and chairman, Sir Robin Knox-Johnston to ASSF, the charity that Sir Ben Ainslie CBE and Iain Percy OBE established in memory of their friend and Olympic sailing gold medallist, Andrew “Bart” Simpson.
Posted today at 7:50 am
LV America's Cup World Series - Media day images by Stefano Gattini
Carlo Borlenghi-Stefano Gattini provided this gallery of images from media day of AC skippers in NYC 2016 Louis Vuitton America's Cup World Series - Photographer Stefano Gattini provided this gallery of images from media day of AC skippers in NYC at 2016 Louis Vuitton America's Cup World Series.
Posted today at 6:03 am
Louis Vuitton America's Cup World Series New York - Press conference
A discussion with the skippers of the Louis Vuitton America's Cup World Series in Brookfield Place New York. 2016 America’s Cup World Series - A discussion with the skippers of the Louis Vuitton America's Cup World Series in Brookfield Place New York. Topics include the expected America's Cup being back in NY, and who are the biggest 'threats', to the unexpected wine and cheese, how the skippers might celebrate a win in NYC, and comparison between the pollution in the Hudson to the pollution in Rio.
Posted today at 4:37 am
AC World Series - Steve Colgate of Offshore Sailing School in New York
Steve Colgate, Offshore sailor, Olympian, US Sailing Hall of Fame member and above all as he says 'a lover of sailing'. 2016 America’s Cup World Series - Steve Colgate, Offshore sailor, Olympian, US Sailing Hall of Fame member, boat designer and owner of Offshore Sailing School (Florida, Tortola, New York) and above all as he says 'a lover of sailing'.
Posted today at 4:26 am
LV AC World Series New York - Press Conference images by Ingrid Abery
Ingrid Abery provided this gallery of images from first press call for the six AC skippers in NYC at LV AC World Series. 2016 Louis Vuitton America's Cup World Series - Photographer Ingrid Abery provided this gallery of images from first press call for the six AC skippers in NYC at 2016 Louis Vuitton America's Cup World Series.
Posted today at 2:48 am
Clipper Race Panama Cup– Who will be first to pass Spaghetti Junction?
Will the westerly course begin to prove beneficial for the teams as they aim to move up the leaderboard? Despite the vastness of the Pacific Ocean and the possible options for the fleet in terms of inshore and offshore racing en route to Central America, the majority of the teams have converged in what Unicef Skipper Martin Clough has nicknamed “Spaghetti Junction” approximately 200 nautical miles off the western coast of the United States
Posted on 5 May
Louis Vuitton America’s Cup World Series - Big Apple, here we are!
The defender and challengers are back together for a fresh series of on-the-water battles, this time in New York. 2016 America’s Cup World Series - Two months on from the first event of the 2016 season of the Louis Vuitton America’s Cup World Series, the preliminary circuit for the America’s Cup, the defender and challengers are back together for a fresh series of on-the-water battles, this time in New York.
Posted on 5 May
Lancer 40 yearsInSunSport - NZHenri Lloyd 50 Years