Moves To End Climate Of Fear Welcomed –

Moves To End Climate Of Fear Welcomed Fishing Monthly Published:  27 June, 2002

LACK of independent accident investigation in the global maritime community was attacked today by the Chief Inspector of Marine Accidents.Publishing the annual report of the Marine Accident Investigation Branch(MAIB)his final report before retiring,Rear Admiral John Lang said this was his overriding regret.

“It is a great sadness to note how few other flag states around the world have full time marine accident investigation organisations that are able and prepared to conduct independent in-depth marine accident investigations and make their reports publicly available.I think safety at sea, and the lives of everyone afloat including passengers, could be improved if steps were taken to correct this major weakness as a matter of some urgency.”He said of the 162 member states of the International Maritime Organisation, only a handful carry out thorough investigations and even fewer have independent accident investigation bodies.

Admiral Lang also hit at the ‘climate of fear’in the industry and repeated the need for confidential reporting of safety concerns.The UK Government has now given the go-ahead for the development of confidential reporting system for those in the maritime industry and Admiral Lang said:”I am delighted to see that Ministers have given their approval to establish a system within the next year.I have argued consistently for the introduction of such a scheme during my tenure at MAIB and believe that it will contribute to improved maritime safety.”