Pamela GlassPamela Glass
Pamela Glass is the Washington, D.C., correspondent for WorkBoat. She reports on the decisions and deliberations of congressional committees and federal agencies that affect the maritime industry, including the Coast Guard, U.S. Maritime Administration and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Prior to coming to WorkBoat, she covered coastal, oceans and maritime industry news for 15 years for newspapers in coastal areas of Massachusetts and Michigan for Ottaway News Service, a division of the Dow Jones Company. She began her newspaper career at the New Bedford (Mass.) Standard-Times. A native of Massachusetts, she is a 1978 graduate of Wesleyan University (Conn.). She currently resides in Potomac, Md.

Blog Activity

How well do you know your stars?

Fear of cyberattacks helps revive celestial navigation. The maritime community is justifiably nervous about the potent punch that hackers could deliver by breaking into the company computer or tangling up the world’s GPS. Earlier this month, the Coast Guard reported the latest cyberscare – that a U.S. port had experienced numerous attempts by an unauthorized source to infiltrate its website. In late November and early December, it had observed 432 attempts – all unsuccessful – to...

Doubts grow about Atlantic offshore drilling

Oil and gas exploration off the Atlantic coast is no longer a sure thing. A few years ago, oil and gas exploration off the Atlantic coast seemed like a sure thing, with businesses, local politicians and governors of key southern coastal states lining up in support. Not anymore. According to an article published Dec. 21 in the Washington Post, the tide has turned, as the price of oil has plummeted, the Deepwater Horizon accident blackened beaches in the Gulf of Mexico region, and new...

Education an annual theme at the WorkBoat Show

Heavy burdens of regulation and compliance face this industry — and education is a big part of the show. Every year more than 1,000 exhibitors and several thousand attendees gather for the annual International WorkBoat Show in New Orleans, with the goal of promoting their businesses, networking and also having a little fun in the Big Easy. For us at the magazine, it’s a time to take stock of the industry we cover, peek at emerging technologies and innovations, and understand what...

Bill seeks to shore up port cybersecurity risks

A new bill addressing port cybersecurity may not go far enough. A few weeks ago, I blogged about a congressional hearing at which port leaders said there were significant cybersecurity vulnerabilities at U.S. ports, and they worried that many cyber attacks were going unreported. Now there’s a bill in Congress that would address some of these shortcomings and improve coordination and information sharing about cyber threats in the nation’s ports. Such threats could include hacking,...

Why don't maritime companies want to report cyber attacks?

Cyber threats are increasingly common, but maritime companies shun public disclosure.  Maritime companies and U.S. ports are essentially private businesses, intent on getting the job done efficiently, safely and at a profit. But the clash between private businesses wanting to remain private and the need for public disclosure in the name of security has become an important part of the discussion over creating a national cybersecurity policy. Cyber threats have become increasingly...

Stamp of approval

The Coast Guard commemorative stamp shows well-deserved recognition — and the service is owed more. When purchasing postage stamps, I usually go for the commemoratives. I figure it adds a little pizzazz to my bill-paying (I still like doing it the old fashioned way) and to my letter-writing (I’m old school on this one, too). And I like commemoratives because there is always something to learn from them, as these stamps often highlight an historic event, a famous person or place, or...

WANTED: Distracted operators

The NTSB has made distracted driving in all modes of transportation a “most wanted” safety improvement for 2015. Ok, so we all do it. Check our email or texts at work or in the car. It’s just too tempting. But it’s risky and often very dangerous, and at worst, deadly, even in the maritime industry. In 2010 a tugboat pushing a sludge barge in the Delaware River in Philadelphia collided with an amphibious "duck boat," sinking the passenger vessel in 55 feet of water, killing two tourists...

Giving waterways their due

Waterways — and those who operate on them — deserve greater investment. I was doing some research the other day that took me to the website of the Congressional subcommittee that oversees maritime transportation and the U.S. Coast Guard. These are the folks that write bills that authorize programs and funding for the Coast Guard, oversee programs involving navigation and ports, and help mariners resolve problems with credentialing, among many other responsibilities. Posted on the...

Mariner credentialing demystified

Have you ever wondered what happens to the documents you file to receive your merchant mariner credentials? Have you ever wondered what happens to the documents you file to receive your merchant mariner credentials? Are they dropped in a big hole? Reviewed by some high-tech robot? Disappear for weeks on end in the wilds of West Virginia? If this has ever intrigued you, and you can get to landlocked Martinsburg, W.Va., then you might want to attend the open house at the National Maritime...

How many female ship pilots are there?

More data is needed on female ship pilots. The Board of Pilotage Commissioners in Washington state is looking for data about women currently serving as pilots in U.S. ports. The board, which is appealing a 2014 court decision that awarded $3.6 million to a female mariner who filed a discrimination suit, is preparing a plan to diversify its workforce. That case — filed by Capt. Katharine Sweeney, a seasoned mariner who was pursuing a ship’s pilot license in...