The maritime industry continued to improve its safety record in 2014 with 75 total losses reported worldwide, the lowest in 10 years. Losses declined by 32% compared with 2013. The 2014 accident year also represents a significant improvement on the 10-year loss average (127) since shipping losses have declined by 50% since 2005.
For the past decade foundered (sunk/submerged) has been the most common cause of loss, accounting for 65% of losses in 2014. Wrecked/stranded
(grounded) was second (17%). There was a significant reduction in fires/explosions resulting in total losses (4), down 73% year-on-year.
There were 2,773 casualties (incidents) during 2014 with the East Mediterranean & Black Sea region the hotspot (490), up 5% year-on-year. The British Isles, North Sea, English Channel, Bay of Biscay ranked second (465), up 29%.
More than a third of 2014’s total losses were in two maritime regions. As in 2013, South China, Indo China, Indonesia & Philippines had the most losses (17),
followed by Japan, Korea and North China (12).
Further Risks to Maritime Safety
While the long-term downward trend in shipping losses is encouraging, AGCS sees a number of risks for the maritime sector, including the growth in mega-ships, cyber security, overreliance on electronic navigation, geopolitical uncertainty and piracy. Attacks in South East Asian waters are up year-on-year, as are incidents in the Indian subcontinent, with Bangladesh a new hotspot.