Safetytech Accelerator, a non-profit established by Lloyd’s Register, has confirmed that UK maritime insurers, the UK P&I Club and TT Club, have signed up for its Cargo Fire & Loss Innovation Initiative (CFLII).
The Initiative, launched in February 2023, is a multi-year collaborative technology acceleration program focused on reducing cargo fires and loss in maritime and its impact. It is already supported by anchor partners COSCO Shipping Lines, Evergreen Line, HMM, Lloyd’s Register, Maersk, the Offen Group, ONE and Seaspan, which represent around 50% of the total liner shipping market.
The program will help expedite the uptake of technology and best practice by identifying specific opportunities where technology can make a difference, shaping joint requirements, identifying technology solutions, undertaking trials and developing best practices and recommendations. It has already started working on solution for early fire detection in cargo hold.
The initiative has a broad technology scope, encompassing three significant topics of concern. The first relates to onboard cargo control, including whether cargo has been properly loaded, secured and monitored during transit. The second area covers onboard fire, the ability to rapidly detect fires and prevent propagation through effective onboard response, particularly on cargo vessels such as container ships and car carriers. The third topic of concern relates to the challenges created by the increasing scale of vessels.
Stuart Edmonston, Loss Prevention Director at UK P&I Club, said: “Fires on board container ships keep happening, with depressing regularity, often resulting in tragic loss of life and catastrophic damage to ship and cargo. A large proportion of these fires are completely preventable, and we find that losses could have been mitigated by better practices. This is an industry-wide problem that requires collaboration. The only way to improve safety is to work together, share ideas, and identify and utilise modern technological solutions.”
Mike Yarwood, Managing Director of Loss Prevention at TT Club, said: “As an insurer of many elements of the container supply chain, we have long campaigned for improved certainty for classification, declaration and packing of cargo in containers. We look forward to engaging with fellow partners to improve safety and certainty of outcome in the supply chain.”