Editorial - Issue 40
When the Alert! project was launched in October 2003, little did I realise that it would run for 12 years, and produce 40 Alert! bulletins, comprising of some 350 articles from a variety of stakeholders across the maritime industry, plus 21 instructional videos, 40 centre spread features....
When the Alert! project was launched in October 2003, little did I realise that it would run for 12 years, and produce 40 Alert! bulletins, comprising of some 350 articles from a variety of stakeholders across the maritime industry, plus 21 instructional videos, 40 informative centrespread features and about 250 papers and presentations in our website library.
Only time will tell whether the project has truly influenced the way in which the various industry stakeholders deal with human element issues, and whether there has been a reduction in the number of accidents resulting from human error; but, there is no doubt that today there is a greater awareness of this important subject.
I am very grateful to The Nautical Institute for giving me the opportunity to be the editor of Alert! and to Lloyd’s Register Foundation for funding the project. I am indebted to David Patraiko at The Nautical Institute, and to Dr Jonathan Earthy at Lloyd’s Register for their support and guidance over the last 12 years. And I particularly want to thank all those who have given of their time, and of their professional experience, to write articles for the bulletins.
It is not easy to summarise the content of the last 39 Issues of Alert!, but there is one final message:
Know thy users - for they are not you! A well-designed ship and its systems should meet the needs of the operator, be easy to use, easy to maintain and, above all, reliable.
Look after your people - and they will look after you. The health, wellbeing and welfare of the seafarer is crucial to the safety of any ship.
Competent people make the difference.
Competent, experienced and well-trained people make the ship safe.
Wake up to the consequences of fatigue.
Fatigue management should be high on the agenda for all ship designers, managers and seafarers.
Effective communication is the key to successful operations. The ability to properly convey information by word of mouth and/or by written communication is important not only to the safety of the ship’s crew, visitors and passengers but also to the wellbeing of the crew.
And finally: Safe, happy, healthy, well-trained and motivated seafarers will prove an asset to any company.