The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has published its Safer Seas Digest 2022. In the digest, NTSB highlights the most important lessons learned from 29 maritime tragedies that took place in 2022. Safer Seas Digest 2022 details the lessons learned from these maritime tragedies involving capsizings, contact, collisions, fires, flooding and groundings.
Among the investigations, two of the casualties described, the Emmy Rose and the SEACOR Power, led to the loss of human life. The NTSB investigations into these tragedies once again revealed the critical importance of personal locator beacons (PLBs) for seafarers. PLBs are widely available and relatively low-cost devices that the NTSB has recommended since 2017 for their ability to help locate mariners in distress, thereby increasing their chances of survival. Adding to the situation is the knowledge that the 17 mariners lost on either the Emmy Rose or the SEACOR Power might be with us today had the PLB recommendation been implemented years ago.
According to NTSB, in 2022 the most prominent issues included the following:
– Containing Engine Room Fires
– Fire Prevention
– Importance of Personal Locator Technology
– Vessel Stability
– Proper Installation, Operation, and Maintenance of Electrical Equipment
– Sound Navigation Practice–Avoiding
– Overreliance on a Single Data Source
– Response to Loss of Steering and Propulsion
– Effective Communication
– Mooring System Arrangements
– Engine Repairs
– Hull Condition
Download the digest: Safer Seas Digest 2022
The NTSB’s origins can be traced to the Air Commerce Act of 1926, in which the US Congress charged the US Department of Commerce with investigating the causes of aircraft accidents. That responsibility was transferred to the Civil Aeronautics Board’s Bureau of Aviation Safety when it was created in 1940. The NTSB investigates accidents and events to determine their probable cause, examine safety issues, and develop recommendations to prevent similar accidents and events in the future. They have issued more than 15,730 safety recommendations to more than 2,470 recipients in all transportation modes. The recommended action has been implemented for 82 percent of the over 12,700 recommendations that have been closed.