October 2014 | IFSMA Blog


Unity for Safety at Sea

October 2014

The October 2014 report contains reports on IMO meetings CCC1 and FAL39. Also information on Marine Society discounts, ExCo Meeting, Office Administrator post, MARTHA Project, UN-HCR Initiative on Protection of the Sea, Oceans Beyond Piracy Forum, Cadet Survey and Placement on board ships for Seatime. Finally, revision of the IFSMA Statutes and Byelaws are mentioned.
This edition of the Newsletter is slightly late due to certain circumstances. But it does not mean that IFSMA has been idle. There has been a lot going on at the IMO as well as a number of projects that can be raised to keep member- ship up to date.
The maritime world is changing and the amount of legis- lation coming from the IMO is quite frightening. It is also problematic in the fact that the legislation is increasing and there is no removal or reduction to balance matters out. Because of this IFSMA must fight to stop the criminalization of the Shipmaster.

CCC 1 – 08 – 12 September Attended by
• Secretariat
• Nautilus International x 2 • NMOA x1
Agenda item 12 – Development of measures aimed at preventions the loss of containers
“Thank you Chair. IFSMA representing shipmasters thanks France and Spain for submitting this useful and informative paper. While welcoming these measures in the interests of safety of life at sea, IFSMA believes that substantive ac- tion is required with respect to the International Tonnage Measurement Convention of 1969. It is our belief that the design and build of Container vessel is being determined by adherence to this Convention and commercial pressures; these vessels are increasing becoming unsafe. When such losses occur, in addition to dangers presented to other marine users there is a potential danger to the ves- sel. Masters and seafarers are continually being placed in considerable danger. The incidents identified in this paper are well known, but not isolated cases. Action needs to be taken. I would request that this intervention is recorded in the report of this meeting. Thank You, Chair.”
IFSMA was not able to present its intervention as shown above due to machinations of the IMO. The paper was not allowed to be presented and this resulted in the followingactions. France asked for further clarification as to why the proposals in paper 1/12 are not covered under the existing planned output for container losses. The chairman, together with the secretariat, stated that the only reason container losses are currently on the biannual agenda is because the circular relating to container weight verification has not yet been approved by MSC. Therefore the proposals put forward by France and Spain amount to a new proposal.
FAL 39 –22 – 26 September Attended by
• Nautilus International x 2 • NMOA x1
Agenda item 9 – 39/9
“Thank you Chair. We would like to thank the cosponsors for submitting the paper. IFSMA on behalf of the shipmasters would agree with the opinion already expressed by Austra- lia and particularly Norway and others that the proposals contained in the annex of the document go a little far to say the least. However, we do believe as shipmasters, that it is vitally important that mooring personnel have sufficient train- ing to ensure their own personal safety and that of the ship.
General knowledge of ships mooring arrangements, and ef- fective communication between ship and shore are particu- lar areas that need to be addressed. We therefore believe that a short practical course, appropriate to the individual’s role, is essential. Thank you Chair.”
As well as the meetings, IFSMA is involved with other NGOs and Flag States in co-sponsoring a number of papers all of which are related to the shipmaster. Additionally, IFSMA makes interventions of papers that may not be fully sup- ported but stating its support.
• Intertanko – Ports / Places of refuge – this is still in discussion for content and direction
• Australia – Proposed revision of the Guidelines on Fatigue
• Nautical Institute – 6on–6off – No co-sponsoring but a major intervention will be made
• ICS – Requirements for periodic servicing and main- tenance of lifeboats and rescue boats, launching appliances and release gear.
The AGA is set for the 16 and 17 April 2014 at Vina Del Mar. In addition there will be a separate event of a cruise from Punta Arenas to Cape Horn departing on 19 April. There has already been a circular sent to all of the membership alerting them of the AGA and certain conditions relating to it. This will be directed to you in more depth to allow all members to make the decision on attendance or not. It is hoped that there will be a good turnout for this event.
All members of IFSMA can obtain a substantial discount on any charts and publications obtained from the MSSC. The minimum will be 10% but it will be possible to obtain a greater discount depending on the publication. For more details contact Mr. Mark Jackson, Book Services Manager at mjackson@ms-sc.org.
Details for delivery of products purchased are subsidized to further reduce costs. A full set of details will be available shortly on the IFSMA website.
On Monday 8th September 2014 an ExCo Meeting was held at IFSMA Head Office, London. A number of issues were raised and discussed. This included the finances of the association which are in good order. A number of the decisions made filter through in the day to day running of IFSMA.
Mr. Alex Farrow has been retained for a short term contract of 6 months commencing on the 1st October 2014. He will be in the office on Monday, Wednesday and Friday of each week. His duties are to assist in running the office and the transfer of all old files from hard copy to electronic format.
MARTHA Project
This is ongoing and the results from the practical feedback from ships is being analysed to show where and how fatigue is being identified on board ships.
The next meeting of this group is scheduled for Tuesday the 2nd December 2014. So far the response from the members has been good and there are enough organizations com- mitted to attending for it to go ahead.
UN-HCR – Initiative on Protection at Sea
IFSMA is proud to be part of this initiative and will be working hard to ensure that the shipmaster is protected under this growing problem in the maritime industry. The following is part of the document circulated by the UNHCR.
1. As you may be aware, the United Nations High Com- missioner for Refugees (UNHCR) has recently developed a two-year Global Initiative on Protection at Sea, which aims to support action by States and others in collaboration with a range of partners and stakeholders. The initiative is intended to limit loss of life at sea as well as exploitation, abuse and violence experienced by those travelling by sea; and to ensure that responses to irregular mixed migration by sea are sensitive to the international protection needs of specific individuals and groups and in particular to refugees.
2. UNHCR sees the shipping industry – including ship- masters, insurers, ship owners and operators, and their representative organisations including IFSMA - as key actors in upholding the rescue-at-sea tradition and important partners in protection at sea including on the issue of safe disembarkation of those rescued. In par- ticular the ship master network including through P&I Clubs are partners with regard to search and rescue, disembarkation to a place of safety and for stowaway related issues.
Oceans Beyond Piracy
Forum on Violence Against Seafarers Off West Africa
IFSMA is making an active participation in the forum to have information exchange and ensure that wherever possible the rights and protection of the shipmaster are identified and known.
IFSMA took an active part in the Intertanko initiative which resulted in the document “It’s a career not just a job” – Best Practice Guide for Recruitment, Welfare and Competence of Cadets. This was a global survey and the results were significant.
From this the ExCo have decided to move matters forward on an international basis. One of the core problems lies with cadets completing all of the courses required only to find that they cannot find a berth to complete the sea time to become a certified officer. More needs to be done to find ways to have berths made available for cadets. IFSMA knows that by itself there is a limited amount of success that can be achieved but working with other NGOs, flag states and shipping companies it can assist in reducing this problem while difficult at this time, it will come to be a major problem in the future.
It was interesting to see that the work being conducted by our European colleagues is reflecting the work that IFSMA is doing. It is important that whenever possible IFSMA and CESMA work together and share resources to obtain the best possible outcome in all common matters.
The policy book has been completely rewritten and is now in separate documents titled:
• About the IMO
• Compilation of IFSMA Resolutions and Statements (2000 – 2014)
• Guidance for Delegates Representing IFSMA
• Statutes & Bye-Laws
These 4 booklet are available on the IFSMA website and can be downloaded. These have been available since the summer and are important for everyone to understand how IFSMA works. It is also necessary for anyone who would like to attend the IMO on IFSMA’s behalf that these docu- ments are read and understood.