London P&I club calls for action on ship refuge


Concerted international action has been called for by John M Lyras, chairman of the London P&I Club, regarding the provision of places of refuge for ships involved in accidents.

Writing in the Club’s 2014 Annual Report, Lyras stated: “Nearly twelve years after the Prestige disaster, it is particularly disappointing to receive reports of other shipping casualties where efforts to mitigate pollution or other risks have been hampered by a reluctance to provide the ships involved with a place of refuge.”

Referencing the widely publicised incidents involving the containership MSC Flaminia and the chemical tanker Maritime Maisie, Lyras said: “There is no easy answer. It is understandable that communities in areas of coastline where refuge may be sought will be reluctant to be exposed to the risk of pollution but, as thePrestige incident illustrated, and as the risk potentially posed by other ships highlights, there remains a compelling need for further concerted international action in this area.”

He concluded: “As part of that, the efforts of the International Group of P&I Clubs – including its outreach programme and ongoing work to engage with governments and authorities over issues involving both places of refuge and the removal of wrecks – are of great importance.”

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