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Tectonic shifts in shipping make safety more vital than ever


At its recent Nor-Shipping press conference in Oslo, DNV GL - Maritime CEO, Mr Knut Ørbeck-Nilssen, emphasised the classification society’s dedication to maritime safety. Although shipping losses have declined over the last decade, challenging markets, demanding environmental regulations, and new technologies threatened to pull the industry’s focus away from marine safety, he said, as per a release.


"In a time when shipping is rapidly transforming, I believe it is crucial to put our primary focus on safety, making sure it is at the core of all changes—whether it is ways of working, technology, or regulations," he said. He noted there were tectonic shifts within the maritime industry on three fronts: shifts in the market, which are increasingly unpredictable; shifts in regulations, headed by the upcoming 2020 global sulphur limits; and shifts in technology, driven by the constant evolution in digitalisation.


 The tectonic shifts were creating their own safety challenges, he said: from growing ship sizes, fire risks due to new cargo types such as cars with Li-ion batteries, to environmental regulations with unintended consequences, as well as the increased risk of cyber attack due to vessel automation and ship-to-shore connectedness.


 The industry needed to be both aware of these challenges, but also embrace the opportunities they created, said Mr Ørbeck-Nilssen. However, a safety net was needed to unlock these opportunities, which was where class and DNV GL could be instrumental, he explained: "I have five proposals that I believe could benefit our industry and improve safety at sea. Firstly, to develop holistic regulations with safety at the core—this is a challenge to the IMO and the classification societies when they are developing rules. Secondly, to improve the safety culture within shipping companies. Thirdly, to apply barrier management lessons from other industries. The fourth proposal is to increase transparency on incident findings. And finally, to unlock data silos for deeper insights into incidents and near-misses."


Source : Exim News Service - Oslo, June 11



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