AUGUST 27, 2015—Shipowners, regulators, insurers, attorneys, and salvage professionals will gather at the 2015 Maritime Salvage Conference & Expo in Stamford, CT, this fall to discuss real-world lessons and practices of salvage, wreck removal, firefighting, and environmental response. The conference, set for September 22-24, will be kicked off by RADM Linda Fagan, Commander, First Coast Guard District. Admiral Fagan oversees over 2,000 miles of coastline along the U.S. Northeast that include the busy ports of Boston, New York, and Newark. Prior to assignment to NORTHCOM, she served as the Commander, Sector New York, the Coast Guard’s largest shore-based operational unit.
During a session sponsored by the Maritime Law Association of the United States on September 22, Jason Harris, Esq., Partner at Welch & Harris LLP, who chairs the MLA’s Salvage Committee, will provide an update on recent notable salvage case law. The MLA’s Salvage Committee advises its membership on international and domestic legal developments concerning commercial salvage, wreck removal, treasure salvage and related marine insurance issues. It also assists in formulating the association’s policy on emerging issues as the UNESCO Convention on Underwater Cultural Heritage, Salvage Convention, and Places of Refuge.
During the session, Harris will be joined by Thomas H. Belknap, Jr., Esq., Partner, Blank Rome LLP, who will address the critical issue of “1989 Salvage Convention.” Responder immunity, a key issue for responders, will also be discussed. The two main concerns for responders that came out of the Deepwater Horizon incident is that plaintiffs sued them under general maritime law due to personal injury caused by the exposure to the spilled oil and the dispersants which were approved for use on a daily basis by the U.S. Federal On-Scene Coordinator under the National Contingency Plan; and bare allegations by plaintiffs of gross negligence and willful misconduct related to the response actions without having to provide any underlying facts to support such allegations.
Among the other highlights at the conference, Lindsay Malen, CEO, Malen Maritime, will detail the largest maritime salvage operation ever undertaken when she discusses “Salvaging the Costa Concordia: A Closer Look.” Righting, raising and towing the giant cruise ship was a massive undertaking that broke new ground in the salvage industry. Malen will be one of three panelists that will address various aspects of Environmental Salvage. She will be joined by Dr. Dagmar Schmidt Etkin, President, Environmental Research Consulting, who will present “Weighing the Cost” of environmental salvage. She will be followed by Alfred J. Kuffler, Esq., Partner, Montgomery, McCracken, Walker & Rhoads, LLP, who will discuss Places of Refuge.
On September 23, Ernesto Fernandez, Senior Consultant, Secretariat of the Inter-American Committee on Ports (CIP), Organization of American States (OAS) will present opening remarks to start the second day of the Conference. CIP promotes port development and best port practices in the Americas region. The organization also serves to share information and promote cooperation between the ports throughout the Americas.
Another notable presentation will made by Sam Kendall-Marsden, Syndicate Director, Charles Taylor and Co. Limited, who will speak on the “AMADEO 1 Case Study.” The AMADEO 1 was a RO/RO passenger vessel that grounded and capsized off of the coast of Chile in 2014.
With their three-day pass, delegates will also have a choice of sitting in on one of two workshops on September 24. One workshop will be a special Maritime Casualty Scenario featuring a tabletop exercise produced by the ASA and the other will be a HECSALV/POSSE Training Seminar produced by Herbert ABS Software Solutions.
For more details on the agenda, registrations and sponsorships, click here. A ten (10%) percent discount will be offered all OAS-CIP members and NAMEPA members.