Company > Safety And Reliability
Safe Operations

Safe operation is of the utmost importance and lies at the heart of MOL’s management. In the new midterm management plan "STEER FOR 2020," we set the reconstruction of our safe operating system as an integral initiative to strengthen our management foundation, which supports the successful execution of the plan. We will continue to restrengthen our safe operating system to ensure the thorough implementation of measures to prevent serious marine incidents as we strive to become the world leader in safe operation.

Safe Operation Management

Safe Operation Management Structure

MOL has an Operational Safety Committee, which is chaired by the President of MOL. Under this committee are the Safety Assurance Committee and the Ship Standard Specification Committee. The Operational Safety Committee discusses and determines basic policies and measures for ensuring safe operation of vessels through rigorous attention to every detail. The Safety Operations Headquarters, which consists of marine technical and ship management divisions, is responsible for implementing specific measures, with progress overseen by the Safety Assurance Committee. The Ship Standard Specification Committee discusses and determines MOL Safety Standards and owned ship maintenance standards from a fail-safe perspective. Equipment and systems are designed to operate safely at all times, even when trouble occurs due to operator error or malfunction.

Emergency Response System

MOL continues to strengthen its systems so that it can provide an accurate response in the unlikely event of an emergency.

Safety Operation Supporting Center (SOSC)

The SOSC is staffed at all times by two marine technical specialists, including an experienced MOL captain, and supports the safe navigation of MOL-operated vessels around the clock 365 days a year. The center monitors the position and movement of more than 900 MOL Groupaffiliated vessels in real time, providing assistance from the captain’s perspective by supplying information on abnormal weather and tsunamis and on piracy and terrorism incidents to relevant personnel on the ship and land. At the same time as serving as an information portal supporting the safe operation of MOL ships, the center also functions as a help desk for urgent inquiries from ships regarding safe operation. Since its establishment, the center has helped to steadily reduce the number of incidents involving adverse weather or emergency entry.

Accident Response Drills

MOL regularly conducts accident response drills on vessels while at sea. These drills simulate various situations such as an on-board fire or water immersion, or act of piracy or terrorism, so that seafarers can respond swiftly and appropriately in an emergency. Head Office conducts serious marine incident emergency response drills twice a year with the cooperation of the Regional Coast Guard Headquarters.

The drills involve MOL’s President, other corporate officers, representatives of relevant departments and ship management companies, and vessels. In November 2013, we conducted an emergency response drill with the premise of a pirate attack on a car carrier in the seas off Somalia.

Furthermore, MOL Group companies that operate ferries and cruise ships conduct emergency response drills, including evacuation guidance, on a regular basis, as they put the highest priority on ensuring customer safety in an emergency.

Safe Operation Measures

Efforts to ensure safe operation will never end. Coupled with the revision and continuation of policies already in place to strengthen safe operation, MOL will thoroughly implement policies to prevent a recurrence of recent serious marine incidents.

Making Processes for Realizing Safe Operation Visible

MOL has introduced objective performance indicators for measuring safety levels, and also set the following numerical targets, including the Four Zeroes.

1. Four Zeroes (an unblemished record in terms of serious marine incidents, oil pollution, fatal accidents and heavy cargo damage)

2. LTIF (Lost Time Injury Frequency): 0.25 or below

3. Operational stoppage time: 24 hours/ship or below

4. Operational stoppage accident rate: 1.0/ship or below

In fiscal 2014, MOL will work on three important targets:

(1) eradicate work-related accidents causing death, and reduce work-related accidents causing injury, (2) eradicate collisions and groundings, and (3) eradicate machinery trouble resulting in a dead ship condition (a ship being unable tomove under its own power).

Preventing New or a Recurrence of Serious Incidents

MOL is constantly, repeatedly implementing and raising awareness of fundamental matters while striving to thoroughly keep fresh the memory of serious incidents we have experienced and prevent a recurrence of serious incidents while giving due consideration to improving teamwork, safety awareness, awareness of relevant parties and vessel management quality. We will continue to adapt our accident prevention system by making improvements related to both seafarer training and ship facilities to break the chain of errors in which minor factors combine and ultimately lead to major maritime accidents.

In terms of seafarer training, we are thoroughly implementing drills prior to boarding and supervising the instruction of less experienced seafarers. We are also enhancing land-based education and training curriculum and programs such as “Hazard experience” training sessions and BRM Drills. These measures are geared towards enhancing the ability of seafarers to perceive danger and promoting teamwork. In addition, we are working to raise safety awareness among seafarers by collecting information from each vessel in operation on examples of incidents and problems as well as close calls and by using videos, photos and illustrations to appeal to the visual sense of seafarers. In terms of ship facilities, we are working to equip ships with error-resistant equipment and promoting the adoption of information technology. This involves promoting the fail-safe design concept by providing shipyards and equipment manufacturers with feedback from vessels in operation on areas of non-conformance,and areas in need of improvement.

It is the MOL Group’s ultimate goal to eradicate work related accidents causing death. MOL analyses both the factors and causes behind accidents from various angles and uses the results to make improvements in ship facilities. It also asks employees on land and at sea to discuss and propose preventive measures for examples of serious incidents and problems as if they were each wholly responsible as part of efforts to prevent accidents.

Cooperation for Safe Operation

The MOL Group works together with vessels, ship owners, and ship management companies to work toward achieving the world’s highest level of safe operation of all owned and chartered vessels by sharing safety-related information. The Company regularly broadcasts “Safety Alerts”— information pertaining to safe operation, including work-related incidents involving casualties—to every vessel. MOL conducts “Safety Operation Meetings” and “Safety Campaigns” involving vessels, ship owners, ship management companies and even the sales division to deepen understanding of its safety standards and to discuss safety improvements. MOL also inspects vessels to check whether its safety standards are understood well and put into effect. If there is a need to make improvements, MOL will take corrective actions, communicating with the vessel, ship owner and ship management company in the process.

Recruiting and Training Excellent Personnel to Support Safe Operation

To ensure safe operation, it is crucial we regularly employ and train excellent seafarers who meet the Company's technical standards. We secure excellent human resources from around the world and mould these recruits into seafarers possessing the high morale and vastly superior technical skills and knowledge MOL demands by tailoring their compensation and working environment on and off the ship, in addition to conducting top-notch training and education. We have introduced a scholarship and other programs to support students aspiring to be seafarers. In addition, the Company operates MOL Training Centres in eight locations spanning six countries. We conduct a wide variety of training from lectures for learning theories to practical training using various simulators.

The Company has introduced unique programs and is carrying out initiatives to foster MOL seamanship. These programs include the Cadet Actual Deployment for Education with Tutorial (CADET) Training, which is a cadet training program whereby practical training is conducted on operated vessels. There is also the OJT Instructor Program where highly experienced captains and chief engineers board the ship while at sea and give advice and technical guidance right there on the spot.

Fostering a Culture of Safety

A safety culture is a corporate culture that puts safety as the shared value. We are therefore taking various steps including education and training programs such as hazard experience training sessions, operational safety workshops, and E-learning to ensure that organizations and individuals realize that to secure people’s lives, cargo, the environment and the vessel always come first and act accordingly. MOL’s goal of becoming the world leader in safe operation will be realized with the collective efforts of all the MOL Group’s executives and employees, including seafarers, who are at the frontlines of our operations.