How Safe Is Your Ship?

Concordia’s tragedy highlighted one is the major question in cruise industry: How safe are mega ships? Is it possible to deal with emergency while carry on 6,400 plus people on Oasis of the Seas or Allure of the Seas?

I know from my experience that muster drill is the least fun event on the board. It is true. Some people even hide in bathrooms to avoid it. When you on Oasis of the Seas or Allure of the Seas, you don’t need to wear your life jacket for the master drill. All life jackets are stored in master stations already. This save you time in case of emergency: you don’t need to return back to your stateroom to pick up the jacket.

 When I sailed on the Allure in November 2010, my muster station was in Studio B. We came to the arena, our cards were swiped, and we were counted easily. It was party like attitude from some cruisers; they talked while rest of use watched video presentation. It was sad, because those people didn’t have a clue where to go and what to do in case of emergency. I think after Concordia’s tragedy people will pay more attention for muster drill on mega ships.

On Monday, the International Maritime Organization, through its Secretary-General Koji Sekimizu, said the IMO needs to “seriously consider the lessons to be learnt [from the accident] and, if necessary, re-reexamine the requirements on the safety of large passenger ships.” The IMO monitors standards set by the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS), which have been continually revised since being established in 1914 in response to the 1912 sinking of the Titanic. (Although ships of U.S. registry must comply with Coast Guard safety standards and pass annual inspection, the Italian-flagged Concordia, part of the Carnival fleet, is not under U.S. Coast Guard jurisdiction if not embarking passengers at U.S. ports.