1st SAFETY4SEA Athens Forum

The inaugural SAFETY4SEA forum, a PRO Bono event organised by SQE Marine Consulting Group, sponsored by Lloyds Register, Dorian Hellas and Transmar Shipping and supported by BIMCO and INTERMANAGER attracted more than 330 delegates representing 150 organisations.

The innovative full day event took place in Eugenides Foundation premises in Athens on Thuesday 5th of October 2010.

During forum opening Mr Apostolos Belokas, as the chairman of the forum outlined objectives including:

  • Enhance Safety Awareness
  • Promote Best Practices
  • Provide an effective platform for the exchange of ideas in the industry

Presentations were given in three sessions as follows:

Session 1 : Challenges faced so far

Capt. Panagiotis Nikiteas, Operations Manager, Newlead Shipping S.A.
Operational challenges managing a Fleet of Bulkers and Tankers in today’s regulatory environment

Capt. Panagiotis Nikiteas analysed through extensive/detailed real life examples analysis of basic activities of the ships such as Environmental pollution topics, ship’s integrity, Safety Culture, Design handicaps, Drills, Hygiene Issues and Mooring operations, encompasses to the following objectives:

  • Vessel’s operational success is directly linked to the level of safety management implementation ashore and onboard.
  • Investment on developing, updating and improving Safety management is in nowadays more than ever vital.
  • Safety Culture is not a cost center, but an earning center which minimizes losses and increases availability ratio of a ship.

Mr Dimitrios Orfanos, HSEQ Manager, DPA/CSO, Dorian HellasDeveloping and Maintaining Safety Culture onboard & Ashore

Mr. Dimitrios Orfanos by analyzing the profile and Safety culture implementation both ashore and onboard the ships of Dorian Hellas mentioned the key of success of a shipping company based on the following points:

  • Safety Culture is mentality of Everything.
  • Proactiveness is a key element, instead of Reactiveness.
  • Top Management real Commitment is a very basic step which is best implemented onboard the ships through purchasing, procedures, maintenance, training and crew awareness.
  • Benefits spring from Safety culture are :
    • reduced risk of accidents,
    • increase of confidence,
    • Better customer acceptance and trust.

Capt. Kuba Szymanski, Secretary General, InterManager

Operating in today’s complex regulatory environment

Capt. Kuba Szymanski, in a very brief but highly interactive presentation focused on the following points:

  • “Both direction” (ashore and onboard) clear and definitive communication is of paramount importance.
  • “You cannot manage if you don’t measure” basic element addressed with reference to Key Performance Indicator (KPI) procedure broadly expanded in shipping industry.
  • By criminalization the Seafarers shipping industry just looses time.
  • More Education than Regulation is the strong message of InterManager Association.

Mr Aron Frank Sorensen, Chief Marine Technical Officer, BIMCO

STCW 2010 Convention

Mr. Aron Frank Sorensen analyzed STCW main elements which dead with:

  • Minimum requirements on training, certification and watch keeping on an international level.
  • Recognition of certificates of foreign seafarers.
  • Also mentioned the Manila 2010 amendments regarding:
  • Improved measures to prevent fraudulent practices
  • Revised requirements on hours of rest and new drug and alchohol abuse regulations
  • New certification requirements for able seafarers
  • New requirements for Electro-technical officers
  • New requirements for training to keep up with development (ex. security, ECDIS and DP)
  • Revised training requirements for tankers

Finally he referred to the critical shortage of officers that is expected in the years to come, and the challenge of Ship owners to attract qualified and skilled seafarers able to confront the new shipping environment.

Mr Michael Sigalas, ILO Senior Specialist, Hellenic Lloyds
ILO Maritime Labour Convention

Mr. Michalis Sigalas analysed the importance of ILO Maritime Labour Convention which is one of the four major pillars of the maritime legislation as it is heavily affecting 90% of the global marine trade and 1.2 millions of Seafarers. The main objectives of the convention are:

  • Decent working and living conditions of the seafarers
  • Governments and ship owners commitment
  • Creation of Control and enforcement mechanisms
  • The achievement of convention main objectives comes through implementation of its basic titles as follows:
  • Minimum requirements for seafarers to work onboard.
  • Conditions of employment.
  • Accommodation, recreation facilities, food and catering.
  • Health protection, medical care, welfare and social security.
  • Compliance and enforcement.

Mr David Peel, European Manager, Rightship

Vetting & Environmental Rating

Mr. David Peel by analysed the background of vetting needs and the status of the market making 25% of the vessels generating an approx 70% of the problems.

Also Mr. Peel presented the Star Rating System and its relation with ships performance.

According to further statistics analysis of RightShip data base, poor performance is predictable and the less the Rightship system’s stars the poorer the ships performance.

Finally he outlined the idea of the Environmental rating system currently designed within RightShip

Session 3 : Best Practices & Experience Transfer

Dr Michael Pantazopoulos, Managing Director, LISCR Hellas
Best Practices from the perspective of the Flag State

Mr. Michalis Pantazopoulos through his own presentation firstly pointed basic characteristics of the marine environment as follows:

  • Shipping Industry’s negative perception is difficult to be overcome.
  • Assigning the responsibility in the industry is a really difficult game called “The blame game”.
  • Flag states play a very important role in this complex environment.

After that analyzed Liberian Flag structure and data base, with 3405 ships register reflecting 11% of world fleet, with average age less than 15 years.

Flag’s best practices for safety culture are based on:

  • Annual Safety Inspections
  • ISM and ISPS Audits and Verifications
  • Port State Detention Analysis and Flag State Detention Analysis
  • Casualty Investigation and Analysis (a reactive measure)
  • Class/RO Cooperation & Monitoring
  • Participation in International Organizations (IMO, ILO, STCW, etc.)
  • LSC – Liberian Shipowners’ Council.

Through the implementation of the above practices, Liberian Flag has created a positive perspective among the other Flags registering World Fleet.

Capt. Theodore Lalas, Fleet Operations Manager, Marshall Islands Registry
Safe & Efficient ship operations : The Flag Perspective

Capt. Theodore Lalas, in his presentation specified that Marshal Islands Flags lies in the White List of Paris and Tokyo MOUs as well as in USCG Qualship 21 list.

Furthermore mentioned that Flag States can assist Ship owners to achieve safe and efficient operation of the ships, by analyzing the whole international framework consisting of:

  • Port State Control Safety Inspection Rules
  • “Name and Same” policy
  • THETIS system
  • Vessels Inspection Programs
  • Interaction among Classes, Flags and Shipowners

Mr Thomas Eefsen, Maersk Maritime Technology
Environmental & Energy Management Best Practices

Mr. Thomas Eefsen, analysed programs in place through Maersk Maritime Technology regarding Energy efficiency and Vessel Performance Management Services.

Energy efficiency which is considered generally a “good business” is based on:

  • Main engine and auxiliary machinery efficiency.
  • Voyage planning and execution.
  • Optimum trim guidance for all vessels.
  • Monitoring of new paint techologies.
  • Monitoring of Hull and propeller conditions.

The main tool for achievieng energy efficiency is the Vessel Performance Management Services, which is given to Shipowners with experience of more than 30 years and is based on daily reports of:

  • Hull and propeller performance.
  • Voyage abstracts and statistics.
  • Operational efficiency.

The secret of success in terms of energy efficiency is good cooperation between Owners,manager,and operators.

Session 4: Round Table Discussion

Does the industry have the necessary internal strength to self-regulate or do we need more regulations to be enforced and comply with? Strategy and actions required to improve safety beyond compliance

Discussion moderated by Forum Chairman, Mr Apostolos Belokas with the participation of :

  • Kuba Szymanski, Secretary General, InterManager
  • Mr Aron Frank S?rensen, Chief Marine Technical Officer, BIMCO
  • Michael Pantazopoulos, Managing Director, LISCR Hellas
  • Mr Yannis Triphyllis, Director, Gourdomichalis Maritime S.A.

Agenda items discussed and there was a consensus on the following points:

  • No more regulations are required
  • We need more education to the market in order to implement properly existing regulations
  • The path towards self improvement and the implementation of best practices should be the core of a strategy aiming to safety beyond compliance


Forum successfully ended with discussion/feedback and participation from the audience.

Finally Forum Chairman, Apostolos Belokas of SQEMARINE Group, on behalf of the organisers expressed his sincere thanks and gratitude to the sponsors, speakers and panellists for their excellent contribution towards forum objectives and also thanked the delegates for their participation.


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