Apr 012015

Again, the US National Transportation Safety Board, NTSB,  has released its annual  “Safer Seas: Lessons Learned From Marine Accident Investigations” report. Safer Seas is a compilation of accident investigations that were published in 2014, organized by vessel type with links to the more detailed accident reports. It’s a useful addition to a safety library.

The 43-page report contains a summary and the probable causes for 23 major marine accidents and features lessons learned from each of the accidents in an easy-to-use summary format. Issues include understanding vessel control systems, passenger safety during critical maneuvers, maintenance, and crew training.

Download Safer Seas 2014

Looking At Errors From Another Side

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Dec 032014

MAC believes those interested in maritime safety, not matter how well experience, may have much to learn from, and be inspired by, other field in which safety is critical and errors may be disastrous, if not tragic, including medicine. This year’s BBC Reith Lectures by Dr Atul Gawande examines the nature of progress and failure in medicine. There may be lessons there for those in the maritime domain as well.

Listen to the first two episodes for free here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/podcasts/series/reith

They can also be downloaded for later listening.

Publication of Note: Safety Regulations Written in Blood

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Nov 032014

ChirpReading through hundreds of accident reports over the years MAC notices a common thread: Major accidents are often preceded by a number of close-calls or near misses, unsafe practices and conditions, and unreported incidents that may not be directly related to the accident itself but which reveal many of the conditions that led to it.

In this opinion piece, reproduced from Maritime Executive with permission, from CHIRP/MARS Ambassador Captain Özgür Özdelice, he explains why such ‘unimportant incident should be reported and, just as important, why, and what made him sign up as a CHIRP/ NI MARS Ambassador.

SAFETY FIRST! For sure everyone on board will be very familiar these two words. We see this message stenciled onto the superstructure of many ships, but is it just a slogan or does it have real meaning?

Far too often we can see on board, from the senior officer to the junior deck rating, they do not pay particular special attention to safety. This is despite the clear messages in the ship’s Safety Management System and company circular letters. Too often we read formal incident reports that this prescriptive safety advice and recommended standard practice are not supported by the actions of the shipping company shore based staff. Managers and superintendents do not demonstrate SAFETY FIRST and therefore MONEY FIRST should replace the painted slogan.

Why is it that not a single day passes without an incident in the shipping sector? It is easy to sit back and do nothing, but when The Nautical Institute and CHIRP asked for volunteers to encourage their new initiative on incident and near miss reporting, I signed up.

Continue reading »

Publication: Guidelines for the Development of Plans and Procedures for the Recovery of Persons from the Water

 Man Overboard, publications  Comments Off on Publication: Guidelines for the Development of Plans and Procedures for the Recovery of Persons from the Water
Jul 012014

MOBGuidelines to help shipowners comply with a new International Maritime Organization regulation requiring ship-specific plans and procedures for the recovery of persons from the water, have been launched today by the International Chamber of Shipping.

Under the new SOLAS Regulation, from 1 July 2014 all ships are now required to develop plans and procedures identifying both equipment to be used for recovery purposes and measures to minimise the risk to shipboard personnel involved in recovery operations.

ICS Marine Director, John Murray, says: “This guidance outlines practical steps that shipowners and  may wish to consider when developing the necessary plans and procedures, including advice that existing on board equipment may be identified as suitable for the recovery of persons from the water.  In the majority of cases, the carriage of additional dedicated equipment will probably be unnecessary.” Continue reading »

Cold Transits Heat Up

 maritime safety news, publications  Comments Off on Cold Transits Heat Up
Jun 112014

arcticOver the past four years annual Polar transits have increased from a mere four to more than 60, says the Swedish Club,  and there is no sign it will slacken off. While the shipping industry is taking climate change in its stride even minor incidents while have potentially major impacts, both on the environment and politically,  yet there is no internationally agreed polar code, or regime, for ice navigation.

Ice navigation requires a very special skills set to avoid accidents and help and incident mitigation will be difficult given polar conditions. Navigation equipment such as compasses and charts can be unreliable at these latitudes and radar returns may be misleading – aircraft have crashed when relying on radar to determine height, for instance.  Yet as longer ice-free summers and increased offshore operations focus attention on the polar regions, transits to and from the Arctic ports are set to increase significantly.

Continue reading »

Video By Fishermen Says “Wear A Lifejacket”

 lifejacket, maritime safety news, publications, video  Comments Off on Video By Fishermen Says “Wear A Lifejacket”
Mar 022013
A still from Lifejacket:

A still from Lifejacket: A Fisherman’s Friend

Two Bridlington fishermen have made a short film to encourage their fellow fishermen to wear lifejackets whilst at sea. The two minute film, entitled “Lifejacket: a fisherman’s friend” is available on Youtube and may be watched below.

The decision to make the film came after a panel of experts* concluded that 26 fishermen could still be alive today had they been wearing a lifejacket when they were involved in an incident at sea (2007-11 figures). The Fishing Industry Safety Group (FISG), were so alarmed by the new statistic that they put the idea of a short film forward to fishermen Dylan Silverwood and Christopher Stewart. They then made the film, with some help from FISG members. Continue reading »

Publications of Note: Norway’s PSA Remembers Piper Alpha

 Accident, Offshore, publications  Comments Off on Publications of Note: Norway’s PSA Remembers Piper Alpha
Feb 272013
Photo: Seconds from Disaster

167 workers died when Piper Alpha exploded on 6 July 1988: Photo: Seconds from Disaster

Norway’s Petroleum Safety Authority looks at the 25 anniversary of the Piper Alpha tragedy this year in the latest issue of its annual Status and Signals publication.  In all its gruesomeness, Piper Alpha contributed insights and an understanding of risk to the international industry.

The publication also takes a closer look at other accidents and near misses which have contributed to a better grasp of safety – from the 1977 Ekofisk Bravo blowout to the Gullfaks C well incident in 2010.

Says PSA: “The primary reason for focusing on the most serious incidents is the PSA’s belief in the value of learning and experience transfer. Although it can be painful to revisit major accidents and critical incidents, such a review can help to reduce the risk of experiencing new ones”.

Meanwhile, Lord Cullen is to be keynote speaker at the Oil & Gas UK  safety conference to be held in the summer to mark the 25th anniversary of the Piper Alpha disaster.

Piper 25, a three-day event to be held at Aberdeen Exhibition and Conference Centre from 18 to 20 June 2013 and principally sponsored by Talisman Sinopec Energy UK Limited, will bring together people from across the global oil and gas industry to reflect on the lessons learnt from the tragedy, review how far offshore safety has evolved since and to reinforce industry commitment to continuous improvement.

Safety Status and Signals

Piper Alpha Conference

2008 Documentary

Blog of Note: Martin Dolan on Safe Working

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Feb 132013
Martin Dolan: "Our investigation findings reveal a common problem of crews not properly identifying risks and risk strategies not being implemented".

Martin Dolan: “Our investigation findings reveal a common problem of crews not properly identifying risks and risk strategies not being implemented”.

Following on Australia’s Transport Safety Board report on the fatality aboard MSC Siena Martin Dolan writes “Tragically, this type of accident is not an isolated event. Over the past few years, the ATSB has investigated several maritime accidents that have involved unsafe working practices resulting in serious injury or death. Falls from height, crushing and exploding equipment are happening all too frequently in the maritime industry—so much so, that we think the industry needs to give heightened attention to unsafe work practices”.

Read his blog here.

Publication of Note: How Not To Bump Into Things

 collision, collision regulations, navigation, publications  Comments Off on Publication of Note: How Not To Bump Into Things
Feb 112013
Navigation: Getting where you want to go with no nasty surprises

Navigation: Getting where you want to go with no nasty surprises

Navigation in its most basic form is the art and science of getting from where you are to where you want to go with no unpleasant surprises. A new publication from the Nautical Institute, produced in association with The Royal Institute of Navigation, aims to help seafarers do just that.

The current edition is 12 pages long and focuses on collision avoidance. It can be downloaded or read online.

See it here