Attitude matters when safety is a personal responsibility
Wilhelmsen Ship Management
You can have the best tools and procedures to ensure safety. But at the end of the day, safety is a personal responsibility. Seafarers' attitude towards safety is paramount to the safety culture onboard.
Having the right attitude towards safety can contribute positively to the safety culture onboard by helping to ensure that individuals will avoid taking actions that may harm themselves or others. It will also increase the likelihood of one to speak up if an unsafe action is occurring.
It is important to acknowledge that each seafarer is unique, each with different risk-taking behaviors. Recruiting seafarers with the right workplace safety profile is critical to the performance of the team onboard, which determines the vessel's performance.
Leveraging over 7 years of data points on incidents onboard, we have used the historical data to plot incidents based on generic crew profiles. One data point that shows a high correlation to safety is the time of employment the crew is employed with the company. Our data observations demonstrate that officers with longer tenure in the company experience fewer incidents onboard compared to newly recruited experienced officers.
There are many factors that could explain this trend. One of them is the effectiveness of our safety culture and training, which has laid a strong foundation for their attitude towards safety. With continuous exposure to our strong safety culture, this has a profound effect on managing their risk-taking behaviors. Newly recruited officers have the relevant experience in rank but may lack the relevant exposure to a strong safety culture onboard.
With this information at hand, our focus is intensified towards newly recruited officers. Acknowledging this gap is crucial to ensure that key support personnel like vessel managers, HSEQ, and marine managers provide the right support to our newly recruited officers and ensure they are trained to develop the right workplace attitude.
The crew profile mix onboard also plays a significant role in vessel performance. Leveraging our data, our crew coordination aims to deploy the ideal crew complement that has a strong trend in good safety performance for specific vessel types and ages. One key factor is deploying the ideal ratio of experienced officers in the company to newly recruited officers to achieve the optimum balance in influencing the safety attitude onboard.
As ship managers, we firmly believe that crew retention is essential to ensuring a continuous supply of competent crew members who can operate our vessels safely and in compliance with regulations. This commitment underlines our dedication to upholding the highest standards of safety in ship management.