Livestock Carrier Missing off Japan

More important differences may be age and the fact that one was steam ship and the other had a diesel main engine.
But the important similarities, as far a the ships are concerned, is that both had been drastically altered/rebuilt.

They both suffered loss of propulsion, but whether that was the cause of the foundering in both cases is not yet known.

Besides, the El Faro was lost in a Hurricane, but the Gulf Livestock One got lost in a Typhoon. Big difference. :laughing:

Good point regarding alterations and differences. Interesting Gulf Livestock got flagged on stability on a prior trip. The guy doing the inspecting was on the ball.

Just how big a difference? Or just trolling again?

" The only difference between a hurricane and a typhoon is the location where the storm occurs."

Looks like he trolled you pretty well, Steamer - I’m thinking the smiley-face kinda gave it away, tho.

Didn’t show up until after my post.

You must have a very slow computer. The smiley was there from the beginning. Your post was nearly 20 min. after mine.
Are you sure you are not “trolling”??

“Don’t worry I’ve sailed in Alaska, this is nothing”

Famous or infamous last words.

Seawater and a switchboard were never made for each other.
It is unfortunate that the flag state is Panama and any investigation into the incident will be reported on in a couple of years in a couple of sentences.
My curiosity is piqued by the Australian inspection regarding stability and this may be made public because two Australians were on board.


This seems to be about at ship’s ability to survive a typhoon. My point with regards to the speed and LOA was the ability of the ship to avoid.

Ability of the ship to avoid a situation starts before you leave the dock and course you take no matter what size your vessel is. Heavy weather has that uncanny ability to outsmart even the most seasoned mariners.

Agree, but speed may matter in the end, provided somebody make the decision to “run for it” rather than pray.

PS> LOA is of far less importance IMHO.

Found myself more of a christian at times because I never had the speed. Direction and timing was a big player in my career. Spooky sometimes, but all my guys made it home thank goodness.

The most important factor in hurricane avoidance is the quality of the forecast used by the master, as demonstrated by Davidson. Sadly, in this case we don’t have the world’s most powerful navy looking for the BVR, so we may never know how it played out.

The weather reports are much more accurate today than even 20-25 years ago. Still, one has to keep a wary eye and respect that weather has a mind of it’s own.

Unfortunately satellites have not been able to replace the loss of automatic acquisition of weather by airliners on scheduled routes in the Pacific and observations at sea. This has become apparent during the suspension of many services during the pandemic with the quality of forecasts here at home. In fact I’m beginning to think we are getting a commentary on the weather rather than a forecast.
The other thing to consider is that back in the day it was instilled in us what to look for and the action to take with a TRS developing or approaching at a time of very poor forecasts given that in the Pacific we generally had sea room. I was taught meteorology by a guy who had sailed as second mate of the Pamir, a four mastered barque, trading between New Zealand and West Coast of the US during WW11.

That is an interesting bit of information.


Did he sail right into a path of a storm, because he didn’t know what he was doing? Or did he have available info that he needed and decided to “go for it” anyway? Big difference. I suspect he didn’t have a clue about anything. Though that’s entirely speculation on my part. But given the level of incompetence, I’ve seen on some ships (piloting 26 years) with some foreign crews, it would NOT surprise me that the ship didn’t have access to updated weather info. Even if they did, didn’t know what to do with it, or was willing to “take the risk” for some financial reward later on if he survived it.

Some westerns are ‘offended’ that I might suggest the Captain was under some motivation to reap a reward later if he made it to China with his vessel, crew, and cargo intact. But in foreign countries, I’ve been to and people I’ve worked with, this is entirely acceptable and a routine course of business. A bribe? Call it what you will, it’s not that big of a deal elsewhere.

But the ship’s troubles began long before this storm. A history of inspections that show mechanical deficiencies and other issues, plus the ship was a conversion (aren’t they all??) and it has been written elsewhere that she had stability issues. Why does this sector of our industry have such a disproportionate amount of horrific disasters??? Because they’re allowed to, follow the money, as always.

Some class inspector(s) somewhere gave them the thumbs up to proceed, nevermind the problems they may have found. Given “assurances” by the vessel owner/operator that “they will be addressed … later” the inspectors said “okay” and off the ship went.

This is the reality of our industry in the year 2020. Is this a surprise to any of us? Not really. It’s stunning only to those outside the maritime industry. But sadly, this doesn’t surprise me at all and I suspect more accidents like this will happen again and again. How is that? Because there is no entity lobbying hard enough, with enough cash to throw around, that can change the hearts and minds of those powers that be (IMO, UN, all world-class societies) to make a substantive change in how these ships are built/converted, how they operate, how they’re inspected, and holding them all to account.

I’m saddened by the loss of human life. Thousands of animals, too. But I’m angry at those who COULD change this situation … but purposely choose to NOT do so for their own personal gain and nothing else.


The families of the Filipinos missing, presumed dead, will be taken care of by the Government according to the Department of Labour and Employment:

Looks like I was wrong and the Gulf Livestock 1 was not overtaken by TC Maysak but just sailed into the system, doesn’t look like they made it into the eyewall.