Environmental Forum at Piraeus Marine Club from Total Quality Consultants Ltd. & Chalos Co, International Law Firm

Environmental Forum 2020

 "U.S. Enforcement of Suspected MARPOL Violations; An Expensive& Painful Process"


A unique and very interesting forum took place inPiraeus Marine Club in “STAMATIOS MACIAS RESTIS” Hall in 16thJanuary 2020 hosted by Total Quality Consultants Ltd. and Chalos Co,P.C. International Law Firm.

Topic of the forum was the “U.S. Enforcement of Suspected MARPOL Violations; An Expensive & Painful Process” and Speakers were  Mr.Gabriel Dovles, Managing Director of Total Quality Consultants Ltd. and Mr. George Chalos Principal of Chalos Co,P.C. International Law Firm.

In a very warm audience of more than 100 executives from the Shipping Industry (Shipping Companies, P&I Clubs, Legal CounselFirms and Flag Administrations; indicatively there were representatives from Arcadia Shipmanagement Co. Ltd., Chandris (Hellas) Inc., Oceangold Tankers Inc., Navarone S.A., West of England P&I, SKULD Hellas and Bahamas Maritime Authority) Mr. Chalos and Mr. Dovles presented all the Practical and Legal aspects of the MARPOL Violations that may be committed from a vessel (either intentionally or unintentionally) and replied to all guests’questions helping them see the “dark side the moon” and giving them “food forthought” for Cleaner, Safer thus more Economic Ship Management Strategies especially for the vessel’s traveling at U.S. ports.

Mr.Gabriel Dovles inaugurated the forum with title of his presentation“MARPOL VIOLATIONS: A potential disaster”. During his presentation, Mr.Dovles initially gave a description and relevant examples of what consists a MARPOL violation, delved into the reasons that lead a company or a vessel’s crew to commit violation of MARPOL Convention and presented the United States’ legal framework based on which vessels can be detained or arrested with the accusation of MAPROL violations within US waters. In a very interesting  part of his presentation, Mr.Dovles presented Forensic Evidence from Environmental Audits performed onboard various vessels from Total Quality Consultants Auditors. This evidence included photos showing installed Magic Pipes for bypassing the vessel’s Oil Water Separator or photosof “tricked” Oil Content Monitor showing less than 15ppm allowing discharge overboard regardless of the actual oil content.

On the second part of the forum, in a Mr. George Chalos thoroughly analyzed the United States Legal Framework which applies for MARPOL Violations (The Act for Prevention of Pollution from Ships 33 U.S.C.§§1901-1911) and referred to real “MARPOL Violations” cases by commenting onthem and how these should be used as a guide from the shipping companies inorder to avoid lapsing into such unpleasant situations. Also, he presented various Interview Tactics that the U.S. Coast Guard follows in MARPOL ViolationsInvestigations and referred to the civil and criminal penalties which are enforced when a Shipmanagement Company is convicted for MARPOL Violations, a section that was also followed from a lot of questions from the attendees of the forum. Last but not least, Mr. Chalos dedicated a part of his presentation on the Shipping Companies’ “What To Do” and “What Not To Do” in order their vessels to be compliant with MARPOL & U.S. Regulations and avoid any hidden traps which may lead the vessels under detention / arrest and the shipping company in court and under very strict and expensive Environmental Compliance Programs.

The end forum was followed by a “networking” dinner in the 7th floor of Piraeus Marine Club, during which the guests had the chance to chat with Mr. Chalos and Mr. Dovles and discuss further the aspects of the forum.