Contributing to the reduction of maritime casualties and human loss

Maritime safety is at the heart of EMSA’s work, and the core of our activities.

EMSA aims to improve the safety of commercial shipping and quality standards of
marine equipment. It does this by working with the European Commission to ensure a high level of harmonised safety standards is in place, adequate for purpose and properly followed.

The Agency is uniquely positioned to do this, as it brings together technical expertise from the Member States as well as that from industry. This allows each safety issue to be considered from a variety of different perspectives, thereby enriching the outcome and making it more robust.

EMSA contributes through technical expertise and research, including through the provision of studies and analysis on different aspects of maritime safety, like fire safety on passenger ships, and ship steering and manoeuvrability. EMSA also works on safety aspects related to new technologies, like autonomous ships, alternative fuels, and alternative sources of power for vessels.

Technical investigations into marine casualties contribute to raising the overall level of
maritime safety in Europe by helping to prevent such casualties resulting in loss of life,
loss of ships and pollution from happening again. EMSA’s role in this process involves
gathering the Member States’ accident investigation bodies to encourage a more
uniform approach as well as to provide technical support and training.

The European Marine Casualty Information Platform (EMCIP) is a centralised database,
through which Member States store and analyse information on maritime casualties
and safety incidents, which is hosted at EMSA. EMCIP’s data can add value by identifying safety issues, as well as pointing out possible measures that could be made to implement an enhanced safety culture at sea.

EMSA also runs the Management Unit of the Equasis global database for shipping information, which promotes quality shipping at global level.

Support to Maritime Administrations in their Flag State implementation effort and in their Port State Control role is a key part of EMSA’s work. The Agency provides knowledge-based solutions and expertise, hosting specific applications, databases, and digital services to assist the broader maritime community.

Underpinning all this work is the human element within the maritime industry. People are key for the safe manning and running of a ship, and quality shipping depends on the quality and well-being of seafarers.