Costa Concordia Disaster Spurs New Cruise Ship Laws

In the wake of the Costa Concordia cruise ship disaster in January, cruise line industry officials created three new policies to address passenger safety issues. They will present the policies to the United Nations’ International Maritime Organization this month. The newly created policies come after a safety review following the Costa Concordia disaster.

The first recommendation is that each ship’s bridge team will know of the cruise ship’s passage plan before the trip. The ship’s master will have to approve the passage plan as well. This comes about because the Costa Concordia’s captain reportedly took the ship off course as a salute to a retired captain that lived on shore.

The second recommendation is that only crew with operational functions can access the bridge. Investigators found that there were unauthorized personnel on the Costa Concordia’s bridge at the time of the accident. The new policy will minimize distractions on the bridge.

Lastly, cruise ships will have to carry additional adult life jackets. While the Costa Concordia had enough life jackets for the passengers, not all the passengers had access to one because of their location on the ship. In addition, there will be a recommendation for a mandatory muster drill (lifeboat drill) for all passengers before leaving port.

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