We rarely reproduce press releases… but it’s Sunday and not your usual release. Seaways, the Nautical Institute’s monthly magazine, has a story this month on ideas to prevent oil discharges aboard ships. They point some fingers and expose some truths while, in some mariner’s opinions, over analyzing others. Here’s the summary;
The NI has identified a number of potential pitfalls in ensuring compliance, and these include poor equipment and maintenance, procedural problems and out dated practices, through to ill equipped port facilities.
In addition, owners need to convince those onboard that they are truly serious about tackling pollution. Companies cannot simply pay lip service to the rules, and tangible action is needed to guard against complacency, to mitigate the risks of mistakes, and to guard against errors of judgment. With the risk of enormous financial penalties and with jail time a real possibility, owners who simply relax and assume all is in order can get a real shock when things go wrong.
However, not all the problems stem from equipment or procedures, and the NI regretfully recognizes the age-old “can do” attitude of many seafarers can be damaging. In too many instances there appears the problems of falsified records, and of a continued willingness to do what is thought best by an individual, even when that flies in the face of the Safety Management System (SMS).
According to Captain Gale, “Environmental crimes are sadly tarnishing the image of shipping. It is vital to remember that responsibility always rests with the owner, and it is not simply enough to put systems onto the ship – these need to be supported and made to work, to ensure the actions of those onboard are always the right actions”.
Download the article –> Pollution Prevention; The Role Of Shipmasters