Marine accidents: NIMASA advocates zero tolerance
By Blessing Chioma &Udeme Clement
The Director General, Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency NIMASA, Dr. Dakuku Peterside has urged players in the maritime sector, especially enforcement officers to comply with safety rules that would eliminate marine accidents and other related issues arising from marine operational mishandling.
He made this known at the opening of the Annual Maritime Administration and Safety Enforcement, MASE- HSE Workshop with the theme: Maritime Enforcement Safety: Current Global Benchmarks, organised by the Agency in conjunction with Heritage Bank in Lagos.
According to him “ I am happy that we are focusing on Health Safety and Environment, most importantly the safety of those who enforce rules and regulations. As safety administration, we are not going to be held by local standards because operational safety especially when it comes to the maritime sector has to conform to global standards. This is what we are preaching in NIMASA”
Speaking further Dr. Dakuku said that as part of the Agency’s mandate to ensure safety and security of vessels visiting and leaving the nation’s territorial waters, it is also the responsibility of the Agency to ensure the safety of those who work on board vessels and offshore platforms, as well as those who create support services from the shore for maritime activities to thrive.
His words, “Our goal is to see a maritime sector devoid of avoidable accidents due to lack of professional enforcement. This is why we have reviewed our enforcement drive, to give proper attention to Health Safety and Environmental guidelines for the benefit of everyone participating in the sector”
He charged enforcement officers to be safety conscious whenever they are carrying out their routine inspections, adding that they must ensure that inspections and enforcement are done in such a manner that no life is put at risk.
Dr. Dakuku further stated that the training would provide hands-on safety procedures to aid maritime enforcement team in carrying out their responsibilities under NIMASA Act 2007 and related instruments in compliance with HSE regulations, solely for identification, assessment and control of hazards prone to enforcement operations in onshore and offshore facilities.
In his remarks the Head of Health Safety and Environment Unit of NIMASA, Fred Ugo said that the Agency through the HSE Unit has set out basic guidelines of officers responsible for ensuring health and safety in maritime, especially as it conforms to environmental standards, which are achievable during enforcement operations.