Schat-Harding Calls for Consensus on Lifeboat Hooks

Thursday, January 27, 2011
Photo courtesy Schat-Harding

Lifeboat manufacturer and service provider Schat-Harding says IMO and some parts of the shipping industry need to move more quickly to a consensus on vital lifeboat safety issues which have important consequences for the safety of seafarers.
 
David Bradley, vice president operations, Schat-Harding Service says, “Good things are worth waiting for. But there is such a thing as waiting too long. The IMO debate over lifeboat hooks has gone on for too long. Seafarers deserve better. They deserve clear standards for lifeboat hooks and a clear timetable for replacing those which don’t meet the new standards. That will ensure their safety and renew their confidence in their boats. A lack of agreement at IMO by some industry bodies and flag states has pushed back consensus on this vital topic, and it could be two years or more before we have a properly agreed amendment to SOLAS for lifeboat hooks.”
 
According to Bradley there is a broad consensus that the current standards set by IMO for on-load release hooks have failed seafarers. “It is time for a new generation of hooks, and the fact is that hooks are available which meet all the proposed regulatory requirements,” said Bradley. “But shipyards won’t specify them and owners will not rush to replace existing hooks while they still meet regulations, despite the well-known risks to seafarers. Draft guidelines to ensure that on-load release mechanisms for lifeboats are replaced by those complying with new, stricter safety standards under SOLAS were discussed in February 2010 by the IMO Sub-Committee on Ship Design and Equipment (DE 53). But no agreement was reached. Similarly, no consensus was achieved at the 87th session of the Maritime Safety Committee in May 2010. There are good draft standards on the table but no consensus to turn them into regulations and the issue has again been referred back for further work to the IMO subcommittee on ship design and equipment. This will take place in March this year, and the findings taken in May 2011 to the 89th session of the MSC. That is unlikely to be the end of the story unless we see a move towards consensus by all parties. We hope that following the MSC 89 meeting in May we will have guidelines in place which will provide some clarity and consistency going forward. And we hope that the date now set as a target for introducing new SOLAS standards, 1st July, 2014, can be brought forward in the interests of safety.”
 
“Safety-conscious owners are re-hooking their boats now and getting ahead of the game, and so are cost-conscious owners who do not want to be caught in a regulation-driven rush to rehook,” said Bradley “Shipowners have already turned to Schat-Harding to retrofit over 130 new hook sets in the last six months. Whatever the delays at IMO, Schat-Harding is there alongside owners and seafarers, helping them to meet and exceed industry safety standards at all times. But we are just one manufacturer and the shipping industry as a whole needs a consensus to put seafarers’ safety first and get new standards in place.”

Maritime Reporter July 2014 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

Maritime Safety

USCG Boatcrew Searching for Burglary Suspect

U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) search-and-rescue crews are currently searching for a burglary suspect in the vicinity of the Rickenbacker Causeway near Miami, Fla. Friday morning.

Massive Haitian Refugee Rescues off Bahamas

Coast Guard crews and Royal Bahamian Defence Force (RBDF) rescued more than 400 Haitians illegally migrating in three separate at sea interdictions in the span of 11 days, informs the USĀ Coast Guard.

Maersk Line Still the Leading Carrier on Reliability in Q2

During the second quarter, the overall industry reliability has improved. However, Maersk Line is pleased to have improved their performance so that they can

 
 
Maritime Careers / Shipboard Positions Maritime Contracts Maritime Security Maritime Standards Navigation Pod Propulsion Salvage Ship Repair Shipbuilding / Vessel Construction Sonar
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | terms and conditions | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 0.1596 sec (6 req/sec)