With the aim of assisting the officers of its member-vessels transiting Australian waters, HELMEPA is now providing its member-companies with the Association’s latest electronic publication titled “A Guide for Seafarers on Ships in Australian Waters”, produced in collaboration with AMSA (the Australian Maritime Safety Authority) and AUSMEPA (the Australian Marine Environment Protection Association).
Australian waters cover an area of approximately 14million square kilometres and feature a wide variety of climatic, oceanographic and geographical characteristics. They hold a rare biodiversity of terrestrial and marine species, together with the world’s largest “living organism” – the Great Barrier Reef – a natural wonder that has been evolving for more than 1 million years. They are simultaneously navigational waters, given that the country depends on shipping for the transportation of approximately one billion tons of raw materials and products each year to its ports.
Besides the requirements of IMO, the Guide is also comprised of the national Australian legislative requirements regarding ship tracking and reporting systems, navigation in the inner routes of the Great Barrier Reef, ballast water management, biofouling and the permissible draught of ships in Torres Strait.
The intention is that the new Guide will also facilitate both Greek and foreign officers transiting Australian waters in their effective cooperation with AMSA for the promotion of the common goal of safe navigation and pollution prevention, especially in the sensitive marine areas of this vast continent.