HELMEPA’s new awareness raising campaign
New campaign by the Hellenic Marine Environment Protection Association – HELMEPA to enhance safety awareness among seafarers, sailors, fishermen, captains and crew of pleasure boats and sailboat skippers and to insist on adhering to safety regulations.
On the occasion of the establishment of May 11 as National Day for the Prevention of Maritime Accidents and Drowning by the Hellenic Ministry of Shipping and Island Policy, HELMEPA presented during a Press Conference (Wed. 11 May) the central campaign TV spot, approved by the Greek National Council for Radio and Television as a social message to be broadcasted by TV stations in Greece and Cyprus.
The Minister of Shipping and Island Policy, Mr Ioannis Plakiotakis, in his welcoming speech, referred to the Ministry initiatives to reduce maritime accidents, emphasizing the importance of raising safety awareness and congratulating HELMEPA for its work, “which constitutes a pillar for the cultivation of environmental awareness and safety culture”, as he mentioned.
“The continuous recurrence of accidents, in specific works or areas on vessels, and in smaller vessels, highlights the need for further targeted information towards entrenching maritime safety culture to all seafarers and marine communities” mentioned, among other, HELMEPA’s Chairperson, Ms Semiramis Paliou
It is worth mentioning that 91% of participants in HELMEPA’s training initiatives state that understanding the causes that lead to a maritime accident or safety incident helps significantly in avoiding future accidents.
To this end, 180,000 residents of coastal communities in Greece and Cyprus have received relevant information, 1,800 Merchant Marine, Hellenic Navy and Coast Guard Officers as well as shipping executives have participated in 90 webinars and simulation seminars of HELMEPA’s Maritime Training Center, as well as 650 fishermen, sailors, yacht and sea tourism crews, port and marina staff and others seagoers have participated in 7 webinars and workshops. Additionally, 750 sailing clubs and fishing associations, marinas, shipping companies, port and local authorities, maritime museums and local volunteer organizations in Greece and Cyprus have been involved in the implementation of the project, with 150 marine professionals and others have committed to act as SAFETY AMBASSADORS of the project, promoting its goals in their local communities.
Highly significant is also the voluntary contribution of managing companies-members of HELMEPA, who have submitted to date 900+ anonymous reports of accidents and near misses on ships under their management to the Association’s Voluntary Incident Reporting Platform (VIRP), thus sharing useful ‘lessons learned’ and experience to avoid future incidents. The platform is now also open for the submission of similar data from smaller boats, i.e. fishing and sailing boats, pleasure craft and yachts.
The Press Conference was coordinated by HELMEPA’s Director General, Ms Olga Stavropoulou, with panel speakers including Mr. Theodosis Stamatellos, Lloyd’s Register Marine & Offshore Regional Manager, Mr. Stavros Katsikadis, Chairman of the Board at Greek Marinas Association & Managing Director at LAMDA Flisvos Marinas SA, Captain H.C.G. Konstantinos Moutzouvis, Director of the Hellenic Bureau for Marine Casualties Investigation and Mr. Constantinos Triantafyllou, Head of Strategy and Development at HELMEPA.
Μr. Stamatellos stated “Understanding the dangers at sea is the first line of defense. This HELMEPA initiative, in collaboration with Lloyd’s Register and Lloyd’s Register Foundation, contributes significantly to fostering a culture of personal responsibility through raising awareness for the younger generation about the value of safety and prevention.”
CYMEPA Chairman, Mr. George Tsavliris referred to the warm response of the local communities of Cyprus to the activities of the project and stressed the value of synergy to achieve common goals.
The campaign is part of the project titled “Enhancing the Understanding of New and Enduring Challenges in Maritime Safety Culture in the Easter Mediterranean” implemented by HELMEPA in collaboration with members Lloyd’s Register and Dynamarine in Greece and sister association CYMEPA in Cyprus, with the support of Lloyd’s Register Foundation (*).
The TV spot shooting took place on the premises, with the kind support of LAMDA Flisvos Marina SA, and with the kind concession of the boat Tranquillo and the support of KYLA Shipping, a HELMEPA member.