Cruise Industry Operational Safety Review Policy Exceeds Existing Regulatory Requirements
WASHINGTON, Sept. 20, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- On behalf of the global cruise industry, Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) and the European Cruise Council (ECC) today announced that the cruise industry has adopted an additional safety policy. This policy, which exceeds current international regulatory requirements, addresses issues related to the loading of lifeboats by crewmembers for training purposes. It is an outcome of the Cruise Industry Operational Safety Review, which was launched in January 2012.
The Life Boat Loading for Training Purposes policy requires the launching and full loading of a lifeboat at least once every six months for crew training purposes for all oceangoing members of CLIA and ECC, effective immediately. During the training, the lifeboat is filled to capacity with crewmembers and maneuvered in the water to facilitate familiarization with lifeboat operations. It is mandatory that all crewmembers involved in operating or loading of lifeboats attend the drill. Smaller ships with less than 300 crewmembers will conduct similar training as appropriate.
"The cruise industry continues to work on a global level to improve the safety of passengers and crew, which is our number one priority," said Christine Duffy, president and CEO of CLIA. "Since January of this year, and in keeping with our efforts to continuously improve operational excellence, the global cruise industry has voluntarily adopted seven wide-ranging safety policies. We remain fully committed to exploring further enhancements in a number of areas that will add to the industry's excellent safety record."
Commenting on the new policy Manfredi Lefebvre, ECC Chairman said:
"The Cruise industry's Operational Safety Review demonstrates our on-going determination to ensure that cruise ships remain the safest vacation option and the safest part of the shipping industry. This policy, like all the policies that have already been developed by the Operational Safety Review, exceeds current international regulatory requirements and has been externally verified by world renowned independent experts."
He added: "Our industry is committed to improving our safety performance in the short, the medium and the long term. I believe our approach supports the goal of the European Commission re-launching their 'Quality Shipping Campaign' as set out in its Maritime Policy 2009-2018."
The Cruise Industry Operational Safety Review receives advice and input from a panel of outside maritime and safety experts. These individuals are evaluating suggested policy improvements as part of the cruise industry's continuous efforts to review and improve safety measures by developing comprehensive best practices for industry-wide implementation and, ultimately, formal submission to the International Maritime Organization (IMO), as appropriate. This policy will be submitted to the IMO for consideration at its next session in November.
A full version of the Life Boat Loading for Training Purposes policy can be accessed at http://www.cruising.org/regulatory/life-boat-loading-training-purposes-policy. All CLIA policies can be viewed at http://cruising.org/regulatory/cruise-industry-policies.
CLIA announced the launch of the Review on January 27, 2012. As part of the Review in February the global cruise industry instituted a new policy requiring mandatory emergency muster drills for embarking passengers prior to departure from port. In March, the industry put forth recommendations to the IMO supporting enhanced reporting requirements to improve the consistency and transparency of marine casualty data. In April, it announced three policies addressing issues related to passage planning, personnel access to the bridge and lifejackets. In June, the industry announced policies related to the recording of passenger nationality and the common elements of musters and emergency instructions. Additional best practices and policies developed through the Review will be announced and implemented on an ongoing basis.
The nonprofit Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) is the largest global cruise industry organization. CLIA represents the interests of 26 member lines, 15,000 travel agents, and 120 executive partners before regulatory and legislative policy makers, supporting measures that foster a safe, secure and healthy cruise ship environment. CLIA is also engaged in travel agent training, research and marketing communications to promote the value and desirability of cruise vacations with thousands of travel agency and travel agent members across North America. For more information on CLIA, the cruise industry, and CLIA-member cruise lines and travel agencies, visit www.cruising.org. CLIA can also be followed on the Cruise Lines International Association's Facebook and Twitter fan pages, and CEO Christine Duffy can be followed@CLIACEO and cruising.org/ceoblog.
About the European Cruise Council
The European Cruise Council (ECC) represents the leading cruise companies operating in Europe and has 30 cruise members and 34 associate members. The ECC promotes the interests of cruise ship operators within Europe, liaising closely with the EU Institutions: the Commission, the Parliament, the Council of Ministers and their Permanent Representatives as well as with the European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA). The ECC also looks to protect the interests of its Members through close liaison with other European bodies such as the European Community Shipowners Association (ECSA), he European Sea Ports Association (ESPO) and the European Travel Agents & Tour Operators Association (ECTAA).The ECC also promotes cruising to a wider public audience to encourage expansion of the European cruise market and works closely with a number of regional bodies such as Cruise Baltic, Cruise Europe, Cruise Norway and MedCruise. The European cruise industry continues to increase its share of the global cruise market with 27.8 million passengers visiting a European port in 2011; 6.2m Europeans cruised worldwide – 30% of market - of whom 4.8m embarked in a European port, and a total of 5.6 million passengers joined their cruise in Europe. The industry generated €36.7 billion of goods and services and providing more than 300,000 jobs. In 2011 there were at least 171 cruise ships active in the Mediterranean and 102 in Northern Europe, ranging in size from 4,200 passengers to less than 100. For more information please visit www.europeancruisecouncil.com.
SOURCE Cruise Lines International Association