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Safe harbour problem rises again

The increasing concern in recent years that some ports are not “playing the game” when it comes to permitting ships in difficulty to enter their harbours will not have been helped by a report yesterday that general cargo ship Biscay Fin (IMO 9953987), which was on its maiden voyage from Shanghai, China to Rauma, Finland, was refused entry by two ports in western Europe on the Atlantic Coast.

On October 17th the vessel encountered rough weather while sailing off the coast of Portugal, suffering cargo shift as a result.

It was reported that some of the deck cargo had to be released and allowed to go overboard.

Because of the rough weather and the cargo shift, the Captain decided that the vessel was in need of shelter. The BISCAY FIN asked the port of Sines, Portugal to allow entrance, but was turned away. The vessel headed south to Huelva, Gulf of Cadiz, but the port authorities there also refused it entrance. The reasons for the vessel being turned away were not yet clear. Indeed, the whole situation is somewhat puzzling, particularly as the vessel sails under a Portuguese flag and is not of any notable size.

The next closest port was Cadiz in south-west Spain, which agreed to provide shelter. During the morning of October 20th the vessel was given safe harbour. There were unconfirmed reports that Algeciras had also turned away the vessel.

2023-built, Portugal-flagged, 2,518 gt Biscay Fin is owned by Biscay Fin GmbH care of manager Blue Fin Shipping GmbH of Buxtehude, Germany. It is entered with Gard P&I on behalf of MS Biscay Fin GmbH. Gard AS is claims leader for Hull and Loss Of Hire, on behalf of Reederei Hinsch GmbH. As of October 26th the vessel remained moored at Cadiz.

Source: Insurance Marine News

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