Page 63: of Marine News Magazine (November 2020)
SAFETY © Drew / Adobe Stock tugboat, towboat and barge industry From your point of view, what are vessels using the TSMS option have have played a key role in keeping our some of the top ways Subchapter M far fewer de? ciencies and detentions nation’s economy a? oat, remaining has affected industry safety? that towing vessels using the Coast open for business and continuing to Subchapter M has incentivized Guard option.
move essential cargoes. Tugboat, tow- more towing companies than ever boat and barge companies have been before to implement safety manage- able to maintain business continuity ment systems. The experience of in large part because employers rec- AWO members with the Respon- ognized early on that mariners are the sible Carrier Program, which was lynchpin of their operations and pro- accepted by the Coast Guard under tecting crewmember health and safety 46 CFR §138.225(b) as an existing is key to keeping vessels moving and safety management system, has dem- commerce ? owing. The industry’s ex- onstrated that implementing a safety tensive experience with contingency management system has produced planning, safety management systems quanti? able bene? ts in the form of and incident command structures has fewer vessel incidents and personal served it well in managing the health, injuries. That is why AWO continues safety and operational challenges to believe that the implementation of posed by the pandemic. The result of a safety management system is in and these concerted and cooperative ef- of itself the best way to promote con- forts has been to keep COVID-19 in- tinuous compliance. The purpose of a fections among the mariner workforce safety management system is to drive to a minimum – a win-win for health continuous improvement in safety and safety and for the resilience of the performance, and its pillars—which maritime supply chain. To maintain are re? ected in the TSMS require- this situation, it will be extremely im- ments of Subchapter M—include portant for employers, mariners and procedures for verifying vessel com- regulators to remain vigilant and not pliance, assessing performance, iden- relax prematurely the prevention poli- tifying and correcting non-conformi- cies and social distancing procedures ties, and applying lessons learned. We that have proven successful in keeping can already see from the data com- vessels largely virus-free. piled by the Coast Guard that towing 63 www.marinelink.com MN