MARAD safety centres for NA, Linden in 2018

DPI, GUYANA, Thursday, January 4, 2018

As part of its continued efforts to ensure the safety of persons travelling on Guyana’s rivers and waterways, the Maritime Administration Department (MARAD) plans to expand the establishment of safety centres in 2018.

Speaking on the department’s future plans at a recent forum, Director-General of MARAD, Claudette Rogers said, in addition to the safety centres in Bartica, Charity and Mabaruma, two other centres are scheduled to be established in 2018 in New Amsterdam and Linden.

Director General, MARAD, Claudette Rogers.

Rogers emphasised that the safety centres are necessary because of the number of accident reports involving small boats. Many of these mishaps are as a result of speeding, recklessness and negligence of uncertified operators, operating unlicensed boats, who do not conform to the safety standards.

Further, in 2018, MARAD will be acquiring a new pilot launch which will enhance piloting of vessels into the harbour of Georgetown and will introduce tug services for vessels making calls to the Port of Georgetown. It will also install buoys/beacons from Grove to the Harbour Bridge and regularise the southern limits and the river pilots who are operating in that area.

Rogers said, “these services will definitely enhance MARITIME’S safety, it is mandatory that all vessels be compliant with insurance in 2018.”

According to the Director-General, MARAD is due to undergo an audit by the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) in 2018. “The global Maritime consultative group is providing consultancy services to Maritime administration to aid in the preparation of this audit,” Rogers pointed out.

The IMO’s mandatory audit scheme is seen as a key tool for assessing Member States’ performance, including Guyana, in meeting their obligations and responsibilities.  IMO has also developed and adopted international collision regulations and global standards for seafarers, as well as international conventions and codes relating to search and rescue, the facilitation of international maritime traffic, load lines, the carriage of dangerous goods and tonnage measurement.

In 2017, MARAD had recorded significant achievements including successfully training sixteen cadets to be certified marine pilots and inspectors and the dredging of the Demerara River main shipping channel to an unprecedented 5.9 metres chart datum. “Though dredging is still ongoing, this accomplishment can accommodate vessels of 180 metres and above in length,” Rogers said.

MARAD is a regulatory agency within the Ministry of Public Infrastructure and has responsibilities for executing pilotage, registration and licensing of vessels, hydrographic surveys and dredging. The Administration was established in 2003 in accordance with the 1998 Shipping Act.

 

By: Ranetta La Fleur

 

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