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Incident data helping to improve maritime safety

Friday 14 August 2020
Release of the first domestic commercial vessel Annual Incident Report
Media Release

The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) has today released the first Domestic Commercial Vessel Annual Incident Report, since taking on responsibility for delivery of National System services and DCV incident reporting.

The report’s findings will help guide AMSA’s future education and compliance activities with a singular goal in mind—safer and cleaner seas.

The report details an analysis of 741 marine incidents during 2019 which were reported to AMSA.

Key findings include:

  • Incidents involving vessel control and navigation represented more than 80 per cent of all reported operational related incidents.
  • 164 injuries were reported comprising of 87 crew injuries and 77 passenger injuries.

AMSA Chief Executive Officer Mick Kinley said there was an important link between these figures.

“Around 30 per cent of injuries reported to AMSA related to incidents involving vessel control or navigation issues,” Mr Kinley said.

“That is why vessel control and navigation is a key focus of our National Compliance Plan for 2020-2021."

The report also details a trend analysis of the 27 operational-related fatalities over 2015-2019.

“In the last two years there has been a decrease in the number of fatalities reported annually, from 18 fatalities for the two years of 2016 and 2017 to 4 fatalities for the two years of 2018 and 2019,” Mr Kinley said.

“But even one fatality is not acceptable and AMSA is continuing to work closely with industry operators to mitigate the risks associated with their operations."

Mr Kinley highlighted the importance of industry operators reporting marine incidents.

“This data gives us insight into what’s going wrong out on the water and what interventions might help improve safety,” Mr Kinley said.

“Incident reporting is improving but there is still progress to be achieved for maritime safety in the domestic commercial vessel sector.

“In partnership with our stakeholders we will continue to identify ways to improve the reporting culture and the safety outcomes which flow from that.”