Places of Refuge
One of the most inevitable things about a ship’s journey at the sea is running into an unprecedented circumstance. Even with mariners always being prepared for adverse conditions, ships being cornered into helpless situations are very common.
What are “Places of Refuge” for Ships?
When a ship meets an accident or is unable to continue its journey, the main concern remains to get the ship, its crew and the cargo out of imminent danger, while causing no harm to the surroundings.
The most logical way would be to take the ship to a secure place, so as to prevent further damage to crew or environment. That secure place would again, logically, be the closest port for ship to harbor. However, that’s where the minor problem is. Taking a damaged ship to a port might cause problem for the port authorities especially if it can cause damage to host port making it a political concern as well.
History of Places of Refuge for Ships
The idea of ships place of refuge has existed for a very long time. Even in 19th and 20th century, vessels in distress enjoyed the right to seek refuge and gain friendly protection from different ports. However, it was in 21st century that………[access full article]