The Mars Reports in each edition of SWZ|Maritime teach that, as a seafarer, you can never be alert enough and should take all lessons in acting safely seriously. But also that safety is an ongoing process of constantly thinking through what new safety risks each change and/or innovation brings. The electric car has already shown that it requires a different way of fighting fires than fires in petrol or diesel cars. An ordinary sprinkler system on a car deck of a ro-ro ship or car carrier is also of little use against burning electric cars with sizable battery packs.

Meanwhile, more and more ships with hefty battery packs are being built to operate emission-free at least while in ports. But what if there is a slight instability in the battery pack and the ship catches fire? Is such a ship fire still extinguishable? How many fire brigades in how many ports around the world know how to extinguish a fire in a substantial battery pack used to power a ship?

Quite rightly, a major marine insurer like Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty has been signalling for quite a few years now that the number of shipping accidents may have been declining for some time, but the occurrence of marine fires continues to increase, see also the report in our news section, both in this magazine and on our website. Of course, there are still many more causes of fires, such as the most irresponsible and sometimes downright criminal fraud in declaring what cargo is actually in containers.

Also read: SWZ|Maritime’s November 2022 issue: Innovative ships and an inventive approach

Fire safety of ships

So all the more reason for our colleague Björn von Ubisch to focus on the fire safety of ships. The article on yacht fire safety again makes it abundantly clear that we cannot do without effective regulation. And above all, learn from what can go wrong in unforeseen situations such as with the blackout on the Viking Sky that was saved in the nick of time.

Safety on another front is the question of how we keep our navy up to standard, see our editor Jaap Huisman’s article on the replacement of the Walrus submarines.

There is also room for some lighter fare in this edition of SWZ|Maritime such as Riekelt Pasterkamp’s article on the anniversary voyage of the new Rotterdam (VII) in honour of 150 years of Holland America Line (HAL). At the time the HAL was founded, people still thought very differently about the use of alcohol on board, as Willem de Jong’s contribution shows. With that, we hope this issue offers plenty of reading pleasure.

This is editor-in-chief Antoon Oosting’s editorial accompanying the December 2022 issue.

SWZ Archive

Our digital archive is once again available to subscribers and they can read the digitial version of our December issue there. Subscribers can register here to gain access. Not yet a subscriber? Visit our subscription page.

Also read: SWZ|Maritime’s October 2022 issue: Spread the word: Ships are important

The articles in SWZ|Maritime’s December issue

In addition to the regular sections such as Dutch news, Maritime monthly, Book reviews, news from the KNVTS and Mars Report, the articles (some in Dutch) in the December issue are:

  • Vervanging van de Walrus-klasse onderzeeboot
  • Ship fires not decreasing
  • Battery fires
  • Tackling blackouts
  • Alcohol aan boord
  • How safe are yachts?
  • Vessels at sea are exposed to mounting security risks
  • Methanol, waterstof en drop-ins voor jachten
  • ‘Cruise ship more economical than a car’
  • Hoe gedragen bellen zich in water
  • Visserij is niet voor één gat te vangen

SWZ’s December cover picture: Multraship is providing three Emergency Rescue & Towing Vessels (ERTVs) to the Netherlands Coast Guard to monitor shipping safety in the Dutch part of the North Sea. The Multraship Commander will take care of wind farm Borssele and the Multraship Protector will take care of wind farms Hollandse Kust Zuid. The Guardian, with home port Den Helder, monitors shipping safety in the northern part of the North Sea (photo Flying Focus).

Also read: SWZ|Maritime’s September 2022 issue: Dutch yachting from leisure to industry