An Exxon valdez catastrophe coming up for Port Phillip Bay because no one will do the math on the certainty of the event

Port Phillip Bay dredging could lead to an Exxon Valdez catastrophe. All parties to the argument over the dredging (including the ineffectual Blue Wedge protesters) have kept away from even the idea of this possibility, except two men. The first is former harbour master, Captain Frank Hart, and coastal geomorphologist, Rob Jell. Captain Hart has figures to show how it’s going to happen. The big ships, deeper by three to four metres than the present regular traders, will have to approach the southern channel at an angle, which means as they manouvre against the currents a 50 metre broad vessel can be more than 140 metres wide (because it is angled) as it enters the 240 metre wide entrance. There is not enough safety margin for these huge vessels, for, as Captain Hart discovered through Freedom of Information, there have been an average of three regular ships grounded every year since 1974. This information has been hidden from the public.

The worst of it is that no one has done the maths to predict the possibility of an Exxon Valdez disaster happening. There have been three investigating panels and not one (the CSIRO has been kept out of the equation) has bothered to follow up Captain Hart’s challenge that it’s not “if an Exxon styled disaster happens but when”. Also remember that when the pilots were tested on the new equipment to be used for entering the southern channel they all grounded during the exercise. One of them grounded in front of the second environmental panel. They didn’t perform for the bodgy third panel.

If you want to see Captain Hart’s and Rob Gell’s logic ring Channel 31 and ask them to replay my documentary, The Last Good Summer. They’ve played it 8 times already (Channel Nine 1 time).

The sycophant Brumby, and his toadies the Port Of Melbourne Authority, are desperate to do the bidding of individual members of the Melbourne Club, and have undermined Captain Hart’s evidence by claiming he had been retired for 12 months and didn’t know the new technology and circumstances.


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