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Primorsk Port Detains Nordindependence Tanker Because of Allision with Berth

Date of publication: 27 August 2020

The seaport of Primorsk (Leningrad Region) has detained for 72 hours the Nordindependence tanker (under the Portugal flag), which allided with berth. This is what a source familiar with seaport captain’s directive told Interfax.

As the tanker was being disconnected from Berth No. 4 on 26 August 2020, it damaged hydraulic engineering structures and process equipment, the source specified.

“The vessel was detained upon request of Primorsk Commercial Port,” he added.

The berth damage caused by the tanker won’t affect the oil loading schedule, said Advisor to Transneft President and Company’s Press Secretary Igor Demin sharing with Interfax.

“Neither the August nor September loading schedules will be changed,” he said.

The same source clarified that “today Nordindependence tanker has set on the extreme mooring post of Berth No. 4 with its fore stern. “This happened during the unberthing. The ship was detained for 72 hours to estimate the damage. During this time, we must sort out all possible structural damages using diving work,” explained Press Secretary of the monopoly, which owns the port.

Mr. Demin emphasised that the incident did not result in depressurisation and oil spill.

He says that at first glance the reason for this accident is a mistake in joint actions of tugboats, the pilot and the captain.

“This is the third such accident recently in the background of FAS requiring cancellation of the guidelines introduced in the port of Primorsk following the first similar incident in 2016. If they followed the instructions developed in the port of Primorsk after analysing the accident with Delta Pioneer tanker, there should have been no situations like the one we have today,” Mr. Demin stated.

“One of the clauses in these guidelines, opposed to by the Department, is empowering the Terminal’s representatives to monitor the mooring operations - the moorage master. Now the actions of tugboats are under control of the tanker’s captain taking advice of a private sailing master interested in speeding up the works,” said the interviewee.

On 20 November 2016, as the Delta Pioneer tanker was mooring at Berth No. 1 in the port of Primorsk for crude oil loading by three tugboats of Rosneftflot, the towrope of Poseidon tugboat gave way, which resulted in the tanker’s stern setting on the berth structure. That accident caused major damages to the berth. After that, Primorsk Commercial Port released new regulations that laid tough claims on the crew, tugboats and mooring ropes. As was stated by Rosneftflot (affiliated with Rosneft), FAS commenced antimonopoly proceedings.

Primorsk Commercial Port (PCP, Leningrad Region) is part of the NCSP (Novorossiysk Commercial Sea Port) Group. The biggest shareholder of NCSP is Transneft that controls a 62% stake.

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