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  1. Design, Operation, and Management of Ships



    Consider the findings over some years of Duffy and Saull in their analysis of risk and critically discuss the implications of their findings in relation to the design, operation and management of ships.    





Subject Business Pages 5 Style APA


The future of ship safety is dependent on various interacting factors that collectively define the business of shipping at a particular future point in time. Reasonably, shipping will continually provide the principal option of transporting materials, various goods and items. The speed of delivery is essential. However, it is still unlikely that a more competitive mode of transport will be invented that can possibly ferry the volume of goods and materials as cost-effectively as a modern shipping does. Trade patterns will eventually change because the relative importance of and magnitude of available markets adjusts purposely to reflect changes over time. Considering the findings of Duffy and Saull in their analysis of risks, this essay paper seeks to critically discuss findings in relation to the design, operation, and management of ships.

While it is considered reasonable to operate on the assumption that the future shipping business might look exactly as today’s, it is sensible to make a supposition that the design and operation system of ships will significantly change. The pursuit of higher logistical efficiency under a reduced operating price that is currently dominated by the cost of fuels, is more likely to remain the same. Relative environmental changes will create changes to both design and operation system (Bailey, Ellis, & Sampsom 2012). The human element has for several years been considered a major factor towards ship safety. According to the International Maritime Organization, people have the capacity to innovate better ideas to significantly enhance quality of marine environment and maritime safety by addressing human element issues with a goal to improve performance (Danish Maritime Authority, 2013).

Residual risks can be controlled in financial terms using a number of strategies. The total risk portfolio will have a different section where risks can be identified and better arrangements put in place to purposely remove, mitigate, and manage the consequences that come with shipping. Risk management encompasses the impact of sound engineering, proper regulation, and adoption to effective management practices. Therefore, if effective management process can be invoked, it is possible to curb the residual risk menace that compromises the efficiency in ship operation. In some instances, residual risks occur because the adopted risk control strategy is imperfect, probably relying on human innovations and activities which are well known that failures are a possibility (Shaw 2013).

Complexity in operation is associated with dynamic positioning and more sophisticated capabilities. In modern world, modern ships have more complex operations. This convolution is created by the increased adoption of progressively interlinked software intensive systems that can manage the ship more efficiently. Without obvious or deliberate choices from stakeholders or managers of operations, ship complexities have been created over time through interactions and a web of links (Fields 2012). The impact of ship safety can however be facilitated by changes in technology which are less obvious, and are sometimes entwined with the ability of people to embrace better innovative ideas. The rate of technological changes will continually be rapid following the increased quest for more responsible actions to handle the challenges that come with global climate alteration, and the increased demand for improved environmental protection (Bailey, Ellis, & Sampsom 2012). These fluctuations readily impact on the persons who facilitate the functioning of the vessel throughout the life-cycle of a ship.

When selecting risk control options, it is important to sufficiently consider the relative effectiveness of the available solutions. It appears that risk control is more about allocating a single solution to a prevailing issue and less about making sound choices (Shaw 2013). If a hazard can be completely eliminated, then it is possible to reduce risks associated with ship operations especially if the selected strategy is fully effective (Fields 2012). The choice of the suppression system for an engine room matter when eliminating suffocation hazards. Ideally, the maritime industry is subject to a wide range of life threatening hazards. This can be either due to a lack of available management options or excessive control costs.

Minimization, substitution, as well as engineering of the risk are among the diverse approaches to risk control that can readily be taken by design. Arrangements can be designed in a much better way to control possible risks by promptly selecting systems that can readily afford inherently lower risks. For example, substituting a carbon dioxide fire suppression system with a Halon gas can work, although putting into consideration that the option has a stunt environmental impact (Bailey, Ellis, & Sampsom 2012). Reduction of inventories, for example reduced fire hazards, is important. Moreover, introducing more engineered system options like increased monitoring and detection options goes a long way in identifying potentially hazardous conditions.

In a past study, the introducing the use of continues of notices on engine control stands advising of barred speed ranges purposely meant to prevent critical speeds of torsional vibration, monitored a controlled operation within the potentially dangerous conditions of the ship. Continually fitting the automated controls to ensures that propulsion systems are fully taken into account and critical speed ranges controlled (Pomeroy 2011). It also controls the risks of loss of flexibility especially during critical maneuvering.

Finally, it is almost obvious that when determining any undertaking to assess whether a risk has fully been managed, it is important to establish a judgment regarding the acceptability of the residual risk. Putting into consideration the realization, concept, operation, and design of complex maritime system, it is important to recognize that management of engineering systems contain the capacity to increase residual risks (Duffey & Saul 2008). Impressive technology solutions can be embraced to purposely meet the demands without associated impacts on the total risk profile. However, adopting a double hull construction particularly for oil tankers has the potential to reduce risks associated with accidental pollution of the marine environment. It creates changes to the properly constructed hull structural design, creation of corrosion hazards, and reduces the potential for hydro-carbon gases to enter the double bottom spaces. The stregy freezes the likelihood of an explosion hazard to occur (Fields 2012). The menace can be controlled by adopting to intense technological expertise that can detect, monitor, and control the likely hazards.

In conclusion, in their analysis of risk management, Duffy and Saull present a number of findings in relation to the design, operation, and management of ships. Management of any operational system must enhance recovery to a situation where its normal functioning can be restored and continued safely with reduced operational capability. Several minor failures and emergencies have resulted into more complex issues that affect the function-ability of ships and their potentiality to reduce all associated risks.  Diverse managerial options have been explored to purposely reduce ship risks and the occurrences of deadly accidents in the event of operation.


Bailey N, Ellis, N, Sampsom H. (2012). Exploring differences in perceptions of risk, and its management, amongst personnel directly associated with the operation of risks. Seafarers International Research Centre, Cardiff University, Cardiff.

Danish Maritime Authority, 2013. Survey on Administrative Burdens among International Seafarers: Final Report, Danish Maritime Authority, Copenhagen.

Duffey RB, Saul JW. 2008. Managing Risk: The Human Factor, Wiley, Chichester, UK.

Fields C (ed). (2012). Safety and Shipping 1912-2012: from Titanic to Costa Concordia. Allianz Global Corporate and Specialty AG, Munich.

IUMI. (2013). Casualty and World Fleet Statistics, Serious and Total Losses, 1996-2012, IUMI Facts and Figures Committee, London. http://www.iumi.com/committee/facts-a-figures-committee/statistics accessed on 05/02/2918.







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