January 17th 2021
Upriver, grounding mv ATHINA III
In view of the ongoing developing situation and different communications and instructions being issued by Sanitary Authorities of the Argentine Government we have chosen to send a consolidated daily report at the closing of working hours with an update of the day’s news.
National Holidays: February 15th and 16th, Carnival Holiday.
Upriver, grounding mv ATHINA III: The mv ATHINA III grounded at Km 398.3 of the River Parana on Saturday, January 16th at 0540 hours. She was proceeding down river from San Lorenzo, having loaded a cargo of 49,500 metric tons of soya meal at Renova bound for Spanish Med on a draft of 9.72 meters FW. Maneuvers for freeing her were commenced at approximately noontime with the assistance of the tug BRUTUS which arrived from San Lorenzo and further, towards evening hours she was assisted additionally by the tug BURONDI. During her grounding, after the first surveys, it was determined that she did not seriously obstruct navigation and the CoastGuard allowed navigation in the area for vessels on heavy draft during daylight hours. The tugs completed their work successfully today, January 17th at 1030 hours, when the vessel was freed up. Navigation was restored in the area and no damage was reported. Vessels now transit the area normally.
Wheat 2020/2021: The Buenos Aires Grain Exchange has issued it’s final report for the 2020/2021 wheat harvest. The total volume has been 17 million tons, down 9.6 per cent on the 2019/2020 harvest but still 0.3 per cent higher over the last five years. The main adverse effect on the wheat harvest was the dry weather that has affected the whole country and South Eastern South America causing limitations on the draft of the River Parana over the last two years.
Maize 2021: The Argentine maize production forecast for 2021 is now at 46 million tons within present weather conditions which are still expected to be “dry”.
San Lorenzo, Cargill Quebracho berth: The maintenance at this berth has been re-scheduled for the following periods: As from February 09th until February 23rd 2021 and from March 08th until March 14th 2021. During these periods the berth will not be loading vessels.
Oil Spill Response at Zona Comun: Once again there is pressure from certain interested parties to have the Oil Spill Response Insurance Compulsory for vessels taking bunkers at Zona Comun. The local CoastGuard station for Zona Comun (PNA La Plata) and the bunker suppliers and the bunker barge Owners were able to prove to CoastGuard satisfaction that present arrangements in place were satisfactory. We draw your attention to this so that bunker suppliers absorb any related expense within the sales contract.
Crew changes Argentina: The borders remain closed and crew changes are not permitted. Internal flights are functioning again but the borders remain closed for crew changes.
Crew changes Uruguay: On and Off signing crew are allowed entry into the country under very strict restrictions. On signers must have a prior negative Covid 19 test 72 hours prior being allowed entry. Crew members boarding are not allowed to stop at any stage between landing at the airport (Montevideo) and boarding the vessel. Once onboard the vessel they must comply with a 14 day quarantine onboard before being allowed to work. Departing crew must proceed directly from the vessel to the airport. Considering that there are at the moment few international flights these requirements make it very difficult for crew members to enter or leave the country. Additionally to this before a boarding crew member is allowed permit of entry the agreement of Sanitary Authority, Immigration and CoastGuard must be obtained.
The best way of achieving a successful crew change at Uruguay is to have the vessel do this OUTBOUND at Recalada/Montevideo anchorage when the vessel’s schedule is not bound so much by weather and port congestions.
Crew changes Chile: Chilean colleagues have supplied us with the following detail to proceed for crew changes in Chile:
Kindly note a protocol has been issued to allow crew changes while our borders are still closed for non Chilean citizens, here you will find requiring points to be complied with:
Authorities are allowing for crew members to disembark and take their flights from Chile to their final destinations with following conditions:
• Providing all information about the intended disembarking to the Health, Maritime, Migration Authorities via Agency at least 72 hours in advance including names, citizenship, passport number, name of vessel, and full repatriation flight schedule (attached file with data requested).
• Completing a 14 days quarantine period on board in good health condition since the vessel sailed from the last foreign port prior to disembarking in Chile.
• Submitting the on-line affidavit for travelers to prevent Coronavirus diseases (attached).
• Not presenting any symptoms of COVID19 (Health Service may order a health check at any time)
• Moving directly from the disembarking port to the airport or designated sanitary residence (in case 14 days of quarantine not completed). Max. period permitted in the hotel is 5 days.
• Wearing personal health protection items such as face mask, face shield, gloves and hand sanitizer while in our country.
We need to send to Ministry of Transport a few points (attached file with data requested).
Once received and double checked, they will send the approval to Consulate where joiner will come from.
The crew member must going personally to the respective Consulate, for taking a picture, fingerprint.
If all going well, the consulate will notify to Immigration, Health Service and sanitary borders, that crew member can travel and get in to Chilean territory.
Along with this a safe-conduct document will be provided. This document will be mandatory and must be presented on arrival to Chile.
IMPORTANT: Only crew members who does not require Chilean visa to come to Chile can apply to safe-conduct.
Once arrived to Chile.
At any time, must wear facial mask and carry own protective items for COVID-19
Immigration would check that all documents are in order, if so, will be provided the SHORE PASS (crew member immigration card).
The Health Inspector will make an evaluation of crew health, if do not have any symptom of COVID 19, her entry will be granted.
In case to have any symptom or to result positive in the preliminary Covid test, would be isolated and the entry would be denied.
Transportation from International airport to the port must be exclusive. So, domestic flights are not permitted and either intercity buses service (commercial).
Also important for both, on signers and off signers, is to have tentative flight schedule (complete route), this is necessary to start formalities with authorities.
We estimate about 5-7 business days to complete formalities.
Will keep you posted.
Antares Servicios Maritimos S.A.
For more information