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Web alert: Project HORIZON

22 February 2012

The club, through Charles Taylor Consulting, was a partner in a consortium of 11 academic institutions and shipping organisations sponsored by the European Commission to carry out a research into ‘watchkeeper fatigue’ – in what was called Project HORIZON.

The research has been conducted jointly by Warsash Maritime Academy (Southampton Solent University) and  Chalmers Tekniska Hoegskola AB (Dept of Shipping and Marine Technology (Sweden).

Project HORIZON undertook to use scientific methods for measuring fatigue, in various realistic seagoing scenarios, using bridge, engine-room and cargo simulators. The project has assessed the impact of fatigue on decision-making performance and determined optimal settings for minimising those risks to both ship and seafarer.

Three academic institutes collaborated to ensure that enough voyages of sufficient duration were undertaken, to replicate ship-board operation, with real-life scenarios of voyage, workload and incidents using simulators.  Specialist input from a stress research institute, skilled in transport operations research set the requirements for fatigue measurement and determining the performance degradation of watch-keepers.

The initial results were recently announced at a meeting in Warsash Maritime Academy last month and the full findings are shortly to be issued. The findings of the research have been analysed and recommendations will be made for application by interested parties, including ship owners, maritime regulators and those setting requirements for manning and operation of ships. The output will include be a Fatigue Management Toolkit with software and guidance notes. The involvement of the other partners has provided expert objectivity of the project and its results, as well as widening routes for dissemination and exploitation.

HORIZON addresses concerns over the increasing losses (human, financial and environmental) of maritime accidents which frequently cite fatigue as a contributory.

In the meantime before the findings are issued a web video explaining the project can be seen here

Further information about the project can be found at  www.project-horizon.eu|