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Importance Of The International Safety Management Code Of SOLAS Chapter 9

Satisfactory Essays
The International Safety Management Code is mandatory and appears in SOLAS chapter 9. The ISM code means that companies must have an implemented safety management system covering all of the companies activities both on and offshore. The code issues the responsibility of the overall safety of vessels and the prevention of pollution within the companies own management structure which means it is not the sole responsibility of the Ships Master or Designated Person Ashore that is responsible for the ships safety but every single person onboard also.
The ISM Code became mandatory in 1998 but the idea began in the late 1980s after a series of accidents involving human error had occurred. It is long said that the start of SOLAS was the sinking of the Titanic and similar can be said about the start of the ISM code and the sinking of the Herald of Free Enterprise. The Herald of Free Enterprise was a Ro-Ro Ferry just coming out of a Port in Belgium called Zebrugge and sailing towards Dover. As the vessel was coming out of the port the Bow doors were not properly shut, this combined with the ships speed caused lots of water to come onboard and sunk the vessel within minutes. The Assistant Boatswain who was in charge of closing the Bow doors was found to be asleep in his cabin. Although the sleeping Boatswain was directly responsible for the sinking of the ship a Public led enquiry found that he was simply the last in a long chain of failures that led to the sinking of this ship. The public Enquiry found that both the master of the ship and also the shore based management were at fault for not putting more focus on safety before this incident.
The ISM Code’s basic content is to increase safety at sea. The obvious main element of this is to p...

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To sum up the ISM code was introduced after in particular the British ship, The Herald of Free Enterprise capsized as a result of various human errors both on the ship and also ashore. The ISM is main objectives are to increase the safety of personal at sea and also to reduce the chance of pollution at sea damaging the marine environment. The ISM code applies to practically all sea going vessels and will itself continually reviewed and changed to always be improving safety standards at sea. Unfortunately this means learning from mistakes of future accidents in order to prevent them from happening in the future and there may be further changes from a result of what happened with the Costa Concordia. As a last point it is clear that any initial costs implementing an effective SMS system will always be overcome by the profits gained by having an effective system.