Skuld would like to advise its members that we see an increased number of claims for alleged propeller damage due to ice.
While the winter season in general results in an increase of propeller damage, this mostly occurs between December and March. Based on our records the most common places are Nakhodka and St. Petersburg in Russia, and Dandong and Bayuquan in China.
Hitting the ice can damage a ship's hull, rudder, propeller or other structure. Ice infested waters are more challenging to non-ice class or non-polar class ships which rely on icebreaker ships and weather forecast when calling at such areas.
Skuld would advise its members to follow all risk mitigating procedures when sailing in ice. It is always recommended to make a risk assessment to identify the hazards that will be encountered and to have appropriate risk mitigation measures in place.
Good voyage planning is very important thereby allowing the ship to operate in a sea of ice provided they have appropriate designs and equipment, knowledgeable and experienced crew, and all the information needed for the voyage.