Abandonment, personal injury and death of seafarers needs urgent action
Ad Hoc Expert Working Group on Liability and Compensation regarding Claims for
Death, Personal Injury and Abandonment of Seafarers, 1st meeting
11 to 15 October
The problems of abandonment, personal injury and death of seafarers need urgent remedial action, according to a Joint International Maritime Organization (IMO)/International Labour Organization (ILO) Ad Hoc Expert Working Group on Liability and Compensation regarding Claims for Death, Personal Injury and Abandonment of Seafarers which met at IMO headquarters from 11 to 15 October.
The Working Group noted that although there were a considerable number of international instruments which dealt with certain aspects of the problems relating to abandonment, death and personal injury of seafarers, none adequately addressed the problem comprehensively.
The Working Group, which was established following submissions to the IMO Legal Committee during 1998 and 1999, agreed that a joint IMO/ILO approach was the best way to examine the problems and make recommendations to the parent bodies.
A number of ILO instruments contain clauses relating to conditions of work on board ships and the rights and duties of shipping employers and employees, while IMO is the United Nations agency concerned with safety of shipping and protection of the marine environment and is concerned with ensuring ships comply with international standards, including financial security.
The Working Group noted that compliance with international standards was essential and that nothing should be done that would encourage substandard shipping.
The Working Group agreed that:
The Working Group is expected to meet again during 2000, following discussions at IMO and ILO. It is expected to review existing instruments relating to abandonment, death and personal injury of seafarers and to consider possible longer term arrangements, such as the establishment of an international fund or national measures.
The Working Group agreed it would need further information, to be submitted by ILO/IMO Member States and other organizations, relating to the following:
Based on this information, the Working Group is expected to be able to examine and evaluate possible new approaches for dealing with the issues of abandonment, personal injury and death of seafarers. The Group would examine a number of possible solutions to the problems as follows:
Relating to abandonment:
Relating to personal injury and death: