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New Directive on Fishing Vessel Safety Expected

A new EU Directive on the safety of fishing vessels is being drafted because of an increase in incidents involving vessels of all sizes.

The Marine Casualty Investigation Board says it has seen an increase in incidents involving fishing vessels of all sizes.

In its annual report the Board’s Chairperson, Claire Callanan says: “This has also been the assessment of our European Union partners and is feeding into the draft of the new Directive.”

The European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) is due to publish its 2021 ‘Annual Overview of Marine Casualties,’ with analysis of marine casualties or incidents accidents reported up to 31 December 2020 by EU Member States. The report will analyse accident data provided to EMCIP from an accident perspective.

From an advance draft of the Report, according to the Chairperson, “the figures in 2019 show that while 16% of all the occurrences correspond to fishing vessels, they were the source of 32% of all very serious and serious occurrences.”

The EMSA Report concludes that “fishing vessels are more vulnerable to accidents, not so much in terms of frequency, but in terms of the seriousness of the consequences when they do occur. The rate of very serious casualties and serious casualties for fishing vessels is much higher compared to the overall fleet. In addition, despite the accidents of fishing vessels representing 16% of the total number of accidents.”