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Sugar Shipwreck in danger!! Help

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Sugar Shipwreck in danger!! Help

Post Number:#1  Postby WDC » Sat May 02, 2009 12:13 pm

The Sugar Shipwreck is one of the top Perhentian Island Dive Sites.  Actually called 'Union Star', the 92m vessel sank in Dec 2000 and now acts as an artificial reef for abundant marine-life.  Both fishermen and divers know this spot for large schools of snapper, sweetlips, baraccuda, trevally and many many more. 
So what do we have - a wreck that acts as a reef, and therefore supports abundant marine life as well as the economy through tourism and the fisheries

Please help us stop this wreck from being salvaged for scrap metal.  We need to write letter to protest.  We must tell the authorities how important this wreck is to us and the environment.  We must tell them that to remove it will be a huge loss.

I have only just received this news - i'll be adding to this post later today with the names and addresses of the relevant departments to write to. 

Dive Centres of Perhentian reading this - i'll be around in a few days with a petition to register our objection. 
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Re: Sugar Shipwreck in danger!! Help

Post Number:#2  Postby ScubaBunny » Sat May 02, 2009 1:37 pm

How can we help Peter? If you need us to sign a petition, pls let us know.

What I dont understand - why do they need to salvage it as scrap metal after 9 years????? Are we as a country are running out of money that we need to do that??  :angry4:  :angry4:

I just paid my tax anyway! And its damn bloody expensive tax tooo!!!!!!!  :angry4: :angry4:
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Re: Sugar Shipwreck in danger!! Help

Post Number:#3  Postby expressodupio » Sat May 02, 2009 4:29 pm

ScubaBunny wrote:How can we help Peter? If you need us to sign a petition, pls let us know.

What I dont understand - why do they need to salvage it as scrap metal after 9 years????? Are we as a country are running out of money that we need to do that??  :angry4:  :angry4:

I just paid my tax anyway! And its damn bloody expensive tax tooo!!!!!!!  :angry4: :angry4:


:angry4: haiyo... salvage it? i guess they must be really broke to resort to making a quick buck like this. hey, and i haven't been to that wreck! anyway, i'll help in anyway i can.

and yeah! i also just paid my tax too! though in my case the they actually need to pay me back for over taxing. :P
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Re: Sugar Shipwreck in danger!! Help

Post Number:#4  Postby John F SeaDemon » Sun May 03, 2009 8:29 am

I believe that this is part of the Marine Department's exercise to remove navigational hazards in shallow waters.  Coastal merchant vessels do ply the waters between the Perhentians and the mainland.  This same exercise is being carried out in the Strait of Malacca and off the coast of eastern Johor.  Not that I like it.
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Re: Sugar Shipwreck in danger!! Help

Post Number:#5  Postby shafi » Mon May 04, 2009 9:24 am

SD, is there any way they can keep Sugar Wreck there but instead put a marker so that the merchant vessels can navigate AROUND the wreck? Like you know, just go a little bit to the left or right...

Its quite a small wreck...doesnt span a huge area at all...

Because what if it wasn't a wreck but a huge boulder coral reef instead... would they blast that away too if it presents a risk to the vessels?
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Re: Sugar Shipwreck in danger!! Help

Post Number:#6  Postby kimseng the maverick rogue » Mon May 04, 2009 10:50 am

there is a marker built in close proximity to the wreck. and many boats use the marker for navigational purpose as well as to avoid the wreck (not that any of the boats i drive can hit it) ... i do use the marker when the weather is not good and i can't aim for the mainland  :D

but what puzzling is that usually ships which need more than 5m of depth to pass will have some sort of much much more advanced version of the fish finder. i remember boarding a fishing boat which has the equipment that can scan the seabed 1nm ahead...

so i have to wonder what is actually the purpose of removing this wreck?

shafi wrote:
Because what if it wasn't a wreck but a huge boulder coral reef instead... would they blast that away too if it presents a risk to the vessels?



sea belle rock???? hahahahaha..... the built a lighthouse there afterall.
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Re: Sugar Shipwreck in danger!! Help

Post Number:#7  Postby shafi » Mon May 04, 2009 12:55 pm

kimseng the maverick rogue wrote:so i have to wonder what is actually the purpose of removing this wreck?


The fish and the scrap metal la...


Yea - Sea Bell is a classic case - so can they construct a mini bell just beside the wreck or something?
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Re: Sugar Shipwreck in danger!! Help

Post Number:#8  Postby John F SeaDemon » Mon May 04, 2009 6:14 pm

shafi wrote:SD, is there any way they can keep Sugar Wreck there but instead put a marker so that the merchant vessels can navigate AROUND the wreck? Like you know, just go a little bit to the left or right...

Its quite a small wreck...doesnt span a huge area at all...

Because what if it wasn't a wreck but a huge boulder coral reef instead... would they blast that away too if it presents a risk to the vessels?


Well, the right question would be: WOULD ALL THE DIVE CENTERS ON THE PERHENTIANS TEAM UP TO FOR AN ACTION COMMITTEE AND PETITION TO THE STATE GOVERNMENT TO PRESERVE THE WRECK AS AND WHERE IT IS?

If we as divers alone start sending petitions but the dive centers keep quiet, what's the point?

Reefs and boulders are part of natural hazards and would have been charted for almost two centuries at least.  The Sea Belle rock was charted by the British round about the same time HMS Magicienne charted the Magicienne Rock off Tioman...more than one century ago. And as it is a permanent natural feature, and because of the lack of depth there, a navigational beacon was put up to warn vessels of its presence and danger to navigation.  The route would have been determined a long time ago and the vessels would be sailing farther away. The MV Union Star sank only in recent times, and is actually within coastal merchant vessels route.  I will continue this after Kim Seng's posting...

kimseng the maverick rogue wrote:there is a marker built in close proximity to the wreck. and many boats use the marker for navigational purpose as well as to avoid the wreck (not that any of the boats i drive can hit it) ... i do use the marker when the weather is not good and i can't aim for the mainland  :D

but what puzzling is that usually ships which need more than 5m of depth to pass will have some sort of much much more advanced version of the fish finder. i remember boarding a fishing boat which has the equipment that can scan the seabed 1nm ahead...

so i have to wonder what is actually the purpose of removing this wreck?

shafi wrote:
Because what if it wasn't a wreck but a huge boulder coral reef instead... would they blast that away too if it presents a risk to the vessels?



sea belle rock???? hahahahaha..... the built a lighthouse there afterall.


I have seen many times, coastal merchant vessels ply the waters between the mainland and Pulau Perhentian Kecil, some are sisters to the MV Union Star.  At most, the top part of the wreck is at 6 meters.

The law says that the owners of the wreck must salvage and/or dispose of the wreck.  The government will provide navigational aids (beacons, lights) to warn mariners of the presence of the wreck UNTIL the wreck is salvaged. if the owners do not salvage, then the government will lay claim of rights on the wreck and will have the absolute right to remove it.  This is in accordance with the convention adopted in Nairobi in 2007 by the International Maritime Organization's Convention on Removal of Wrecks.

Kim Seng says what kind of vessel with a draught of more than 5 meters would ply that area?  Please be informed that there are vessels that ply there during the monsoon to avoid being hit by winds amidships (to avoid crabbing) that has draught deeper than 5 meters.  The company I work for has a barge that has a draught of more than 6 meters.  Imagine during low tide when the depth has been reduced, and this barge is being towed by a tug that is not even DP-1 fitted, let alone having sonar.  They will need all the room available to maneuver in heavy seas, and hitting a wreck is a big possibility.  Not all large vessels have sonar on board. Some are more than 20 years old and retrofitting a vessel is not cheap either.  And if you remember in 2005, a US nuclear submarine hit a 'wall' in the Indian Ocean that was created on Boxing Day 2004.  That is one vessel that has state-of-the-art forweard-looking sounder.  Passing in between the mainland and the Perhentians would also make it faster for towing assistance to reach them in case of engine failure.

Ships cannot brake.  And braking a ship to avoid collision is not an easy task....especially ones with single screws like the MV Union Star a.k.a Sugar Wreck.

It is still possible for ALL dive shops to send a petition to the state government on this matter, and the divers petition can follow.  But the alternative for coastal plying vessels would be to sail on the outer side of the Perhentians, and risk being blown probably into Terumbu Tiga and spill oil.
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Re: Sugar Shipwreck in danger!! Help

Post Number:#9  Postby shafi » Tue May 05, 2009 2:44 pm

Thanks for enlightening us on this, SD....

The law shall prevail, and i agree with SD... since the wreck serves as an important artificial reef which is now teaming with marine life (and considering that Perhentian's already losing out on its good sites like Tokong Laut) perhaps it would be an idea to have all the resorts and dive centres team up (through Rakan Parks and the Perhentian Resorts Association, maybe??) to ask the government to preserve the wreck as is and let it play its role as artificial reef...

Other than Tokong Laut, De Lagoon and other closer reefs (near PIR and Coral View) are degrading before our every eyes... And other dive sites are having smothering algae slowly creeping up from the base...

So we do have a good cause to want to protect Sugar Wreck...  otherwise we wont have that many sites left to dive!

Any thoughts?
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Re: Sugar Shipwreck in danger!! Help

Post Number:#10  Postby WDC » Tue May 05, 2009 7:38 pm

A bit late back - details below.  Dive Centres have been informed also of course, not just MUW.

DEPARTMENT EMAIL ADDRESS
MARINE DEPARTMENT OF MALAYSIA
JABATAN LAUT MALAYSIA ahmad@marine.gov.my
baharin@marine.gov.my
jai@marine.gov.my

MINISTRY OF TOURISM MALAYSIA
KEMENTERIAN PELANCUNGAN MALAYSIA info@motour.gov.my

MARINE PARK MALAYSIA
TAMAN LAUT MALAYSIA tamanlaut@nre.gov.my

ECONOMIC PLANNING COUNCIL
UNIT PERANCANGAN EKONOMI hqhelp@dot.gov.my
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Re: Sugar Shipwreck in danger!! Help

Post Number:#11  Postby IkanBilis » Tue May 05, 2009 9:26 pm

Thanks for your input and thoughts. This is why I'm glad to be a member of MUW.

My thoughts - If the wreck can be designated as a fish sanctuary, it can be marked on Hydrology Charts, and bulletins can be sent to all surface vessels plying the route. Perhaps in order for that to happen, the wreck will have to be secured and anchored to the seabed, so that it doesn't shift and cause a hazard.

Once designated and marked, the wreck would not be different from any other natural undersea mounts or reefs. If the state government or the Ministry are actively putting in artificial reefs, why do they need to destroy something similar, with a healthy population of adult fish and fry.

Perhaps someone with an understanding of Hydrology Charts, shipping routes and vessel operations can write to the relevant authorities to stop the destruction of the wreck.
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Re: Sugar Shipwreck in danger!! Help

Post Number:#12  Postby dp » Wed May 06, 2009 9:17 am

WDC wrote:A bit late back - details below.  Dive Centres have been informed also of course, not just MUW.

DEPARTMENT EMAIL ADDRESS
MARINE DEPARTMENT OF MALAYSIA
JABATAN LAUT MALAYSIA ahmad@marine.gov.my
baharin@marine.gov.my
jai@marine.gov.my

MINISTRY OF TOURISM MALAYSIA
KEMENTERIAN PELANCUNGAN MALAYSIA info@motour.gov.my

MARINE PARK MALAYSIA
TAMAN LAUT MALAYSIA tamanlaut@nre.gov.my

ECONOMIC PLANNING COUNCIL
UNIT PERANCANGAN EKONOMI hqhelp@dot.gov.my




Hope the response from the Dive Centers will be good.
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Re: Sugar Shipwreck in danger!! Help

Post Number:#13  Postby shafi » Sun May 10, 2009 2:05 pm

IkanBilis wrote:My thoughts - If the wreck can be designated as a fish sanctuary, it can be marked on Hydrology Charts, and bulletins can be sent to all surface vessels plying the route. Perhaps in order for that to happen, the wreck will have to be secured and anchored to the seabed, so that it doesn't shift and cause a hazard.

Once designated and marked, the wreck would not be different from any other natural undersea mounts or reefs. If the state government or the Ministry are actively putting in artificial reefs, why do they need to destroy something similar, with a healthy population of adult fish and fry.

Perhaps someone with an understanding of Hydrology Charts, shipping routes and vessel operations can write to the relevant authorities to stop the destruction of the wreck.


So how do we get Sugar Wreck declared as a fish sanctuary or a site of environmental and economical significance?

We (Reef Check, Wild Asia, WDC and the Ecodivers) did a dive at Sugar Wreck after our 4 surveys here in Perhentian and found 53 species of fish, some of which were juveniles, which means the wreck serves as a great breeding ground for a variety of marine life. Equally important, the Sugar Wreck is also economically beneficial as it serves as an excellent fishing area for the locals (provided they do it sustainably, and not scoop everything up and leave nothing behind in order replenish fish population numbers)... Anyway, below's the list of species Julian's shared with us all.


Longfin banner fish
Blue-ringed angelfish
Semicircle angelfish
Longfin spadefish
Golden rabbitfish
Java rabbitfish
Chocolate grouper
Bluelined grouper
Longfin grouper
Scissortail sergeant
Banded sergeant
Indo-pacific sergeant
Chinese demoiselle
Alexander’s damsel (?)
Bigeye snapper (incl juvenile)
Blackspot snapper (large adults)
Whitecheek monocle bream
Fan bellied filefish
Orange spotted trevally
Bigeye trevally
Yellowstripe scad
Brown banded bamboo shark
Yellowtail barracuda (juvenile)
Pickhandle barracuda
Blue & yellow fusilier
Scissortail fusilier
Robust fusilier
Goldspotted sweetlips
Bluebarred parrotfish
Redbreasted wrasse
Blackspot tuskrfish
Blackeye thicklip
Crescent wrasse
Bluestreak cleaner wrasse
Star puffer
Map puffer
Porcupinefish
Baloonfish
Catfish
Redcoat squirrelfish
Cardinalfish (var sp.?)
Shrimp gobies
Cleartail lionfish
Raggy scorpionfish
Rhino boxfish
Yellow boxfish
Freckled goatfish (juveniles)
Vanicolo sweeper
Cobia (kingfish)
Blue spotted ribbon tail ray
Blue spotted stingray
White eyed moray eel
Squid


If indeed the removal of wreck is believed to be the responsibility under Marine Parks Department, then we can write to them to let it be left as is. The wreck has been there at that same spot for 9 years - seems rather secured to the sea bed and should not move... unless we send in a team to anchor it further just to be sure...

The Perhentian resorts/dive centers will be meeting up tomorrow (May 11th) and T'ganu Marine Parks will be represented. Hopefully, the topic of Sugar Wreck will be brought up for discussion under "Any Other Matters"  :)

Who manages the Hydrology Charts, shipping routes and vessel operations? Also Marine Parks?
Last edited by shafi on Sun May 10, 2009 2:09 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Sugar Shipwreck in danger!! Help

Post Number:#14  Postby John F SeaDemon » Mon May 11, 2009 9:35 pm

shafi wrote:Who manages the Hydrology Charts, shipping routes and vessel operations? Also Marine Parks?


Ermm..you must mean HYDROGRAPHY. Hydrology is the study of the movement of water, quality and where it can be found.

Hydrography comes under the purview of the Royal Malaysian Navy.
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Re: Sugar Shipwreck in danger!! Help

Post Number:#15  Postby WDC » Thu May 14, 2009 12:19 pm

Good news just come in from KL.  The plans to remove the SSW have now been halted due to the reponse from the puplic and Perhentian operators.  The ministry claimed they were not aware of the importance of the shipwreck to local businesses and as an articficial reef and thank everyone for bringing the matter to their attention.

Great news and thanks to anyone who wrote in. 

Best, Peter
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Re: Sugar Shipwreck in danger!! Help

Post Number:#16  Postby Ketam » Thu May 14, 2009 12:28 pm

Great job guys..... if its is true..... gave Ketam some hope on the ecological situation in our waters and whether all that we have discussed are worth anything.

Congrats guys..... Well done.  :D
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Re: Sugar Shipwreck in danger!! Help

Post Number:#17  Postby John F SeaDemon » Thu May 14, 2009 1:46 pm

Good job. Keep it up.
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Re: Sugar Shipwreck in danger!! Help

Post Number:#18  Postby ketamnette » Thu May 14, 2009 6:12 pm

great job guys.. thanks and congratulation.. :icon_thumleft: :icon_thumleft: :icon_thumleft: :icon_thumleft:
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Re: Sugar Shipwreck in danger!! Help

Post Number:#19  Postby Bagman » Thu May 14, 2009 7:42 pm

great work :D... it goes to show that if we work together, we could always do wonders :D
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Re: Sugar Shipwreck in danger!! Help

Post Number:#20  Postby shafi » Thu May 14, 2009 10:54 pm

WONDERFUL NEWS!!!!!  :icon_thumright:

Keep up the good work!! ... It pays to be vigilant, report, research and be persistent in fighting for what you believe in protecting...

:)
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Re: Sugar Shipwreck in danger!! Help

Post Number:#21  Postby Snafu » Fri May 15, 2009 4:01 am

Good job n hope it will last!

:D
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Re: Sugar Shipwreck in danger!! Help

Post Number:#22  Postby sheik » Fri May 15, 2009 5:48 am

indeed, sweet news for sugar wreck!
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Re: Sugar Shipwreck in danger!! Help

Post Number:#23  Postby bockbong » Mon May 18, 2009 2:19 am

Well done evryone!!!! :smileinbox: :smileinbox:
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Re: Sugar Shipwreck in danger!! Help

Post Number:#24  Postby Arewhere » Mon Jun 08, 2009 4:56 pm

:smileinbox:


                      :wav: :wav: :wav:

                                                      :icon_salut:
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Re: Sugar Shipwreck in danger!! Help

Post Number:#25  Postby zesea » Mon Jul 20, 2009 9:12 pm

Good job ! I discovered the Sugar Ship wreck with WDC in June 09 and i did not know all this story ! This wreck is wonderfull and destroy it would have been regrettable. It's a real santuary, and it's important to protect it.
Here a video on my blog, with a part of "Union star":
http://www.zesea.com/Zeblog/2009/07/17/ ... rhentians/

Thanks to Peter !  :D
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Re: Sugar Shipwreck in danger!! Help

Post Number:#26  Postby 40bar » Wed Jul 22, 2009 4:52 pm

bump to all of you guys :hello: :hello:
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