IMO to speak at ICHCA Ship-Port Interface Seminar in London

Regulators and industry experts will convene in London, 12 Sept, to explore how to improve the safety, efficiency and productivity of ship-port operations

Despite the introduction of advanced vessel and cargo handling technology, many operations at the ship-port interface remain largely manual, posing hazards both on deck and ashore that lead to injuries and deaths, as well as damage and loss to cargo, ships, cranes and port infrastructure. On 12 September, ICHCA International, the global cargo handling NGO, will hold a practical seminar “The Ship-Port Interface: Improving safety, security & efficiency in the age of scale” in London, to discuss how to improve ship-port operations at this most critical hand-off point in the maritime supply chain.

Hosted at the London offices of international law firm Holman Fenwick Willan (HFW), the seminar will include a keynote speaker from the International Maritime Organization (IMO). Other confirmed speakers include Richard Steele, Director, Port Skills and Safety, Peregrine Storrs-Fox, Risk Management Director, TT Club, Jan Boermans, Director HSSE Europe and Russia, DP World, Laurence Jones, Director Global Risk, TT Club and Capt. Harry Gale, Technical Manager, The Nautical Institute. Representatives from FEPORT, the European Federation of Private Port Operators and HFW will also participate. The day will be chaired by ICHCA International’s Technical Adviser and Representative to IMO, Capt. Richard Brough OBE.

The seminar will address the recent rapid growth in vessel size and much bigger cargo exchanges which have created new technical and operational challenges both on the approach to port and at the terminal – unfortunately illustrated this year by a number of groundings and ship-crane collisions involving large and ultra large box ships. This includes the 396m, 19,100TEU CSCL Indian Ocean, which ran aground in the River Elbe on its way into the Port of Hamburg, Germany, during February. In May, the 13,100TEU, 366m COSCO Hope collided with a crane on its way out of Port Said, Egypt, causing a large fire on the berth.

Increases in ship size and cargo handling peaks have also highlighted – and potentially increased – long-standing risks and inefficiencies at the ship-port interface, including container lashing and twistlock handling, lifting people under cranes and working at height on and alongside ships in port. These topics will be explored during the day as part of the broader debate on how shipping lines, ports and terminal operators can collaborate in new ways to improve the safety, efficiency and productivity of vessel berthing and handling operations.

Discussions will also address the impact of today’s heightened security concerns – both physical and virtual – as well as the practical effects of new environmental requirements such as shore power for vessels. Where are the biggest risks today? How do current industry practices need to change? Where are new approaches, relationships and ‘joined-up thinking’ most needed? And what role can innovative technology – including automation, IoT/M2M and big data platforms – play in addressing the multiple challenges?

Last but not least, the seminar will touch on Ports of Refuge and handling of distressed vessels. New EU Operational guidelines for ships in need of assistance were presented by the European Commission this January following the fatal MSC Flaminia accident in summer 2012 and have now been taken forward within IMO’s Maritime Safety Committee. Ultra-large ships and the general increase in ship size across many trades create new risks and challenges for emergency response, requiring fresh dialogue between institutional and industry stakeholders.

Scheduled immediately after the 3rd session of IMO’s Sub-Committee on the Carriage of Cargoes and Containers (CCC), which will be attended by ICHCA in its NGO capacity, the seminar will provide a timely chance to review key legislative developments at IMO and elsewhere. This includes current work on safe mooring and ships lifting appliances, as well as reflecting on the first few months of the new IMO SOLAS VGM container weight rules that came into force worldwide on 1 July this year.

“Improving the safety, security and efficiency of operations at the ship-port interface is truly a cross-party issue. Ship designers, owners and financers, classification societies and insurers, container designers and owners, ocean carriers, port and terminal operators, stevedores and lashers, equipment and technology suppliers and legislators all have a stake. As the leading NGO association representing the interests of the global cargo handling industry, ICHCA International is pleased to once bring all the interested parties together to share the latest information and discuss the way forward.” said Capt. Richard Brough OBE, ICHCA’s Technical Advisor and Delegate to IMO, who will moderate and speak at the seminar.

The Seminar will be followed by the 76th meeting of the ISP – ICHCA’s Technical Panel, which takes place on Tuesday 13 and Wednesday 14 September 2016. Members of the panel and observers are invited to attend. The ISP meeting is kindly hosted by TT-Club at their European office in central London.

Source: ICHCA Ship-Port Interface Seminar