Recent initiatives in safety regulations have focused on tankers, bulk carriers and passenger ships. However, an investigation was undertaken for the Royal Institution of Naval Architects’ Safety Committee, which compared the losses of general cargo ships and their associated fatalities with other types of ships. This study has concluded that general cargo ships account for nearly 20% of the world merchant fleet, but suffer over 40% of the total losses and almost 40% of the fatalities.
In its capacity as a Non Governmental Organisation at the International Maritime Organisation (IMO), the Institution presented a paper on the study to the 77th Session of the Maritime Safety Committee, recommending that further investigations be carried out into the causes behind these alarming statistics and that action should subsequently be taken to reduce the risks. It was agreed in principle that the data provided by the Institution justified a more detailed undertaking into the safety of these ships. Accordingly, RINA is seeking the support of a Member Government to co-sponsor a suitable submission to the next meeting of the Maritime Safety Committee seeking its agreement to the inclusion of a new work item in work programmes of relevant sub-committees.