Blue Marlin entry to the bay and operations at Station Pier

Article Date: 14/04/2020

For information about operations at Station Pier, please follow this link to the section below on this page.

The Blue Marlin

The Blue Marlin is a semi-submersible heavy transport vessel operated by Royal Boskalis Westminster N.V., a Dutch dredging and heavy lift company. The vessel will be entering the Heads at approximately 0800 hours on Wednesday 15 April 2020.

The Blue Marlin is transporting the Ocean Onyx from Singapore. The Ocean Onyx is a drilling rig operated by Diamond Offshore and chartered to Beach Energy Limited for a work program in the Otway Basin off Port Campbell. (See photo below.)

The Ocean Onyx will be laid up in deep water in Port Phillip Bay due to the planned positioning in Bass Strait being delayed by the pandemic.

The Blue Marlin will undertake preparatory work on Thursday 16 April 2020. The float-off of the Ocean Onyx is planned for Friday 17 April 2020.

The Ocean Onyx is expected to be laid up in the anchorage for three months. While in lay-up the vessel will be supported by rig tenders operating from an onshore base in Geelong. View a map showing the location of the Ocean Onyx in the Anchorage (PDF).

Following the float off of the drilling rig a float-on loading operation will be undertaken by the Blue Marlin. The Boskalis backhoe dredger Magnor will be floated on for transport to the Port of Townsville. The Magnor has been working in port of Melbourne waters this year undertaking dredging for the Port of Melbourne.

The Blue Marlin has previously visited port of Melbourne in October 2012 and February 2014 when she was transporting the hull modules of the Royal Australian Navy Landing Helicopter Dock ships, HMAS Adelaide and HMAS Canberra to the BAE shipyard in Williamstown.

For more information, follow the links below

Boskalis website

Boskalis heavy transport vessels

Diamond Offshore website

Beach Energy website

View a time lapse video of the Blue Marlin in 2012 (YouTube)

Operations at Station Pier

The operations of TT-Line will continue as scheduled.

There are no cruise vessels at anchor or alongside in Port Phillip Bay. The last cruise vessel for the 2019-20 cruise season, MV Viking Orion, sailed from Station Pier at 1700 hours on Thursday 09 April 2020.

At this time there are no cruise vessels expected until October 2020. Victorian Ports Corporation (Melbourne) (VPCM) is now undertaking the program of repair and maintenance.

Due to the repair and maintenance program and the ongoing restrictions on movement and activity as part of the State of Emergency in Victoria, Station Pier will be closed to public access.

Compliance with Australian and Victorian Government Requirements

The operations of vessels in the port of Melbourne are monitored by Australian Border Force (ABF) and the Department of Agriculture, Water and Environment (DAWE). DAWE is responsible for biosecurity and together with the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) is ensuring that the vessels comply with the applicable Commonwealth and Victorian Government legislation and regulations.

On 1 April 2020, ABF, as required by DAWE, expanded the 14-day on board quarantine rule to include crews on vessels from any port outside Australia. The rule had initially only applied to ships from Italy, South Korea, mainland China or Iran.

If a vessel berths in an Australian port with any crew member that has been onboard fewer than 14 days since leaving or transiting through an international port, all crew must remain on the vessel until the 14-day quarantine period has elapsed. Crew are only permitted to disembark to perform essential vessel functions. All crew must wear vessel-supplied personal protective equipment (PPE) while performing this work and in public areas of the vessel when non-crew members are on board.

VPCM is complying with the normal Australian and Victorian Government legislation and regulation. In addition, the following directions are in place.

The ABF, DAWE and DHHS directions do not preclude the working of a vessel that has been cleared and Pratique has been granted.

Blue Marlin entry to the bay and operations at Station Pier