Labour Research March 2012

Health & Safety Matters

Design of modern cruise ships flawed

The grounding of the Costa Concordia off the coast of Italy illustrates the many flaws with large modern cruise ships, according to the international maritime union Nautilus.

For some time, the union has been pointing out the problems that such size represents and has particularly focused on issues, such as how such vast numbers of passengers can be successfully evacuated. Nautilus has also voiced concerns on matters such as stability, the watertight integrity and fire-fighting protection on this new breed of “mega-ship”.

The union wants any review of the Costa Concordia disaster to examine the adequacy of life-saving appliances, the quality and quantity of crews and their training and experience dealing with emergencies, like evacuation.

It also believes that more can be done to reduce working hours and improve the crewing levels of the bridge and engine room.