Santa is a Good Seafarer too

On these special days our thoughts turn to those courageous seafarers, men and women from all the corners of the world, who face dangers and tough working conditions to operate today’s complex, highly technical ships, every hour of every day of the year, and on whom we all depend.

Merry Christmas and a Very Happy New Year!

About 1.5 million seafarers are employed by the global shipping industry manning approximately 55,000 merchant ships, carrying cargo around the world. They are the ones in the “front line” of shipping industry, often unseen , but who work to deliver 90% of world goods including this year’s Christmas gifts “door to your door”… so you should agree that Santa could be a seafarer too!

This year we saw the first vessel from a series of giants who will totally reshape the containerized transport Maersk Mc-Kinney Møller build by Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering in Okpo South Korea is called a Triple-E Class for the three main purposes behind her creation – economy of scale, energy efficiency and environmental improvement.

With 400 meters long, 59 meters wide and 73 meters high, Triple-E is the largest vessel of any type on the water. Its 18,000 TEU capacity is large enough to hold 108 million pairs of sneakers or 18 millions flat screen televisions, 182 million iPads, 36,000 cars…You can be certain that many of the gifts found under your Christmas tree in the next days will have been delivered during the past few months by these ships!

2013 is also a landmark year for the seafaring community, as the Maritime Labour Convention (MLC 2006) entered into force on 20 August, marking significant progress in the recognition of seafarers’ roles and the need to safeguard their well-being and working conditions.

We learned this year that the piracy acts decreased… or that Northern Sea Route on the Arctic Ocean, traffic of vessels increased four times more, comparing with the traffic in 2010, and several mind blowing facts about the shipping industry could be numbered but now is not the right moment… I want to underline what our brave colleagues can do!

I would like to conclude this article stating that being long time in the industry I consider that manning seafarers is a privilege and not an opportunity! Wherever you are take care, stay safe and have always good winds!

Have a Very Merry Christmas and a Very Happy New Year!