Saturday, February 28, 2009

Polar voyages revisited

clip_image001 Resuming our (to date one-sided) conversation regarding the increasing prevalence of voyages to polar regions, particularly by passenger ships, it should be noted that the IMO recently issued a notice consolidating earlier guidance it issued regarding ships operating in polar regions. In 2002, it issued a circular providing guidelines for ships operating in Arctic ice-covered waters. A guide for cold water survival was issued in 2006. Guidance on voyage planning for passenger ships operating in remote areas was issued in 2007. Work is currently on-going to update these materials. Your thoughts on polar voyages in general and the available risk-reduction guidance are solicited.

1 comment:

  1. Artic voyages post a real challenge for the USCG, especially with regard to SAR. The vastness of Artic coupled with severe weather and minimal presence means help could be a long time in coming for vessels in extremis. Added difficulties include an absence of ice reinforced cutters, harbors of safe refuge, staging areas, local infrastructure and hospitals. Until the USCG has a permanent and effective presence cruise ship operators need to be extra vigilent while plying Artic waters.