New Technologies Revealed to Improve Passenger Safety at Sea
Passenger Ship Safety Miami returned for its 2nd edition as the only conference dedicated to pursuing higher standards in passenger safety for the US and Caribbean cruise market.
The cruise market is experiencing a period of high growth with operators committing to long-term ship building projects. However, it is at this time passenger safety must be incorporated into the design and build of ships.
Passenger Ship Safety Miami 2018 brought together senior directors and VPs from cruise and ferry operators to meet, network, learn and share best practice with industry organisations to keep passengers safe at sea.
The meeting began with unanimous agreement from all participants that safety is the top priority for all, despite each stakeholders’ unique perspective.
The technological advancements over the past years have all been with this intention, and now, many of those technologies are being integrated together to further enhance the benefit.
Delegates during Day 1 of the meeting discovered many examples of both individual and integrated safety systems associated with fire protection/detection/suppression. It was equally clear that the training component of these new technologies, particularly in light of the Safe Return to Port regulations, is on the front of everyone’s minds.
The desire for committed life cycle training availability from manufacturers was expressed pretty consistently from the ship operators and, equally, the desire to provide that was shown that from the OEM’s.
The intention, delegates learnt, is to ensure the crew capabilities remain consistent throughout the ship’s operational life, across crew changes, other technological improvements, so that the best trained crew isn’t just the one that delivers the ship.
Each of these aspects is evaluated through the lens of risk management where integrating all possible resources and information was stressed as necessary (particularly the local professional fire fighters). The FAA provided an excellent example of a successful industry/government partnership focused at the top goal of the best safety level possible.
Day 2 began by discussing, perhaps due to technological advances, how the ship Safety Management System (SMS) size has become cumbersome and there is now a desire to apply more robust information management and integrate the SMS information with other systems.
We heard again of the need to educate local responders and stakeholders on the cruise ships in their ports to better support local contingency operations. This is equally important in many of the ports of call where local infrastructure capabilities could be overwhelmed following a mass rescue evacuation to one of those locals.
Crew training stood front and centre throughout the day’s activities, particularly towards supporting the new life saving and fire safety systems that were highlighted. New training methods such as PC-based, virtual reality, and system/role specific training were summarized. The need for resilience during and after training, the ability to successfully adapt to changing situations that fall outside planned or expected standard procedures, even those established within the SMS, was stressed during the afternoon’s discussions.
The meeting ended with a fascinating summary of the ongoing standards work at IMO and an example of successful port state control efforts were presented to wrap up the event.
Passenger Ship Safety Miami will return in January 2019. For more information on speaking, attending, sponsorship or exhibition enquiries, please contact email@example.com.