In citing human error as the leading reason for ship accidents a P&I Club has suggested owners carry out continued evaluations of their crews.
North P&I Club is encouraging its shipowner members to consider the crew evaluation and benchmarking service offered by Seagull Maritime through an exclusive partnership between the two organisations.
Over the next 12 months any North shipowner member wishing to assess its existing and potential crew members – whether directly employed or supplied via manning agents – can use Seagull’s online crew evaluation system (CES) and associated benchmarking tool for a 25% discount on the standard $4,000 fee.
According to North’s deputy loss prevention director Colin Gillespie, North’s root cause analysis of major claims identified issues with officer quality and safety culture to be present in the majority of incidents.
“Quality issues are a problem in an employment market characterised by officer shortages but in which shipowners must meet minimum manning standards. This can result in low quality officers who, in a more balanced supply and demand situation may struggle to find work, continuing to circulate in the market. These officers can be both ineffective in their work and potentially unsafe. Through our Right Crew initiative we are encouraging our members to find and keep quality seafarers – as well as to identify those who are not,” Gillespie said.
“Seafarer knowledge assessment and benchmarking is an important tool to highlight knowledge gaps,” Gillespie added.
CES tests, which can be taken anywhere on a standard PC, are based on over 5,000 multiple-choice questions on knowledge areas in the International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers (STCW). Test results are recorded and benchmarked against the CES global database of over 700,000 tests carried out since 2010.
Seagull reports that 8% of qualified seafarers scored less than 40%.
‘Low levels of knowledge can be a potential danger to the ship, the crew and to the individual themselves. Where low levels of knowledge are identified they must be addressed. This may be through training programs,’ Gillespie concluded.