Norsafe, global expert in lifeboat manufacture and training, says it’s concerned about the recent spate of lifeboat drill accidents which have seriously injured or led to fatalities among crew.

Norsafe is focusing on training to help prevent accidents when launching lifeboats

Norsafe is focusing on training to help prevent accidents when launching lifeboats

A report in April 2016 by academics at the Seafarers International Research Centre found that tight vessel schedules often did not allow sufficient time for drills and crew were often too frightened to take part as they had not been properly trained in using the equipment.

“A lifeboat is your last chance to evacuate a vessel, when it is not safe to be onboard or use other means of evacuation so it is vital that crew are properly trained on the Life-saving Appliances Code (LSA) and take part in regular drills,” said Endre Eidsvik, SVP of service for Norsafe.

“Skimping on training to save money is not an option and can cost lives.”

Although the IMO constantly reviews and implements changes to equipment and procedures to help reduce accidents, Norsafe said that this is redundant unless crew are thoroughly trained and are confident in using the LSA onboard.

Norsafe has taken its own steps to help prevent accidents when launching lifeboats.

Besides the continuous improvement of its products, it has also set up two modern, STCW approved, full scale training centres for training seafarers in Norway and Greece.

The company also offers a comprehensive maintenance programme called CARE Plan where it works with its clients to determine a structured servicing and maintenance plan to ensure the equipment functions as it should.

By Anne-Marie Causer