SAFETY4SEA: Your organization has been shortlisted for the 2019 SAFETY4SEA Awards in the ‘Dry Bulk Operator’ category alongside a number of other distinguished nominees. What would you like to share with industry’s stakeholders with respect to this development?  

Rob Grool: Someone nominated Zeaborn Ship Management for this award. This means that someone is proud to be involved in the safety culture of Zeaborn or has experienced our safety culture at work and is impressed. Can there be a better encouragement for all the people in a ship management company than to be recognised for continuous efforts to be safe and stay safe?


S4S: When it comes to tackling the safety challenges around the shipping sector, what are the core priorities on your agenda?

R.Gr.: We have just three basic principles, which we apply all the time in the way we work and operate our managed vessels to make sure that our people can return home safely:

  • “Use your brains before using your hands”: Make risks manageable.
  • “Fix the roof before it starts to rain”: Awareness, training and maintenance prevent accidents.
  • “Never walk past a safety problem”: When you see something is wrong, take action.


S4S: Which best practices would you recommend from your perspective to enhance safety performance onboard and ashore?

R.Gr.: Everybody in shipping knows that a vessel can only be safe when it is well managed. That also means that the focus of the ship-and-shore-team has to be on the safety of navigation, cargo and environment and not on ‘producing paperwork’. We have to continue to provide our people on board with the tools they need to operate the vessels safely. However, in our industry we also have to work towards taking the non-essential burdens off our crews’ shoulders to give them the realistic chance to concentrate on their core job, the running of the vessels.


S4S: Do you have any new projects on the pipeline and/or plans that you would like to share with the rest of the industry?

R.Gr.: At Zeaborn, we are going for a total immersion in safety awareness and the tackling of unsafe actions before they cause accidents. This is safety attitude at its most consistent: a continuous focus on keeping the team safe. We use well-established practices from other industries, which have adopted the same attitude to safety.


S4S: What is your key message to the industry for enhancing safety culture onboard?

R.Gr.: There has to be an absolute commitment throughout the company to make risks acceptable and to make them safe to work with. It has to be clear to everyone that we mean what we say about safety commitment and that we have the greatest interest in making sure that our people can come home safely.


You may cast your vote for Zeaborn Ship Management at 2019 SAFETY4SEA Awards dedicated webpage till 6th of September 2019!

The views presented hereabove are only those of the author and not necessarily those of  SAFETY4SEA and are for information sharing and discussion  purposes only.