Survey shows 87% of seafarers need training to handle new fuels

Survey shows 87% of seafarers need training to handle new fuels


A survey of over 500 seafarers found that nearly 87% said they would need training for new fuels such as ammonia, methanol and hydrogen.

The study titled “The Future of Seafarers 2030: A Decade of Transformation” co-sponsored by DNV and Singapore Maritime Foundation (SMF) took the form of a literature review, expert consultations, and a survey of more than 500 seafarers operating dry bulk, container and tanker vessels. Over 70% of respondents had been in the industry over 11 years and two-thirds held the rank of officer.

The survey highlighted the need for training in handling alternative fuels for decarbonisation as well as digitalisation.

Almost 87% of respondents indicated a need for partial or complete training for emerging fuels such as ammonia, methanol, and hydrogen, while over 75% would require training to some degree for LNG, batteries, or synthetic fuel.

“Emerging fuels and new technologies could pose safety risks for assets and crews, if not handled properly. Therefore, we must focus on the human factor and adequately train seafarers who operate and maintain ship systems, including carrying out bunkering operations. As an industry, we have a responsibility to keep them safe and well prepared for all eventualities,” Regional Manager South-East Asia, Pacific & India, DNV Maritime, Cristina Saenz de Santa Maria, said.

The report recommended that training could be prioritised for LNG and batteries as these fuels were likely to be the most prevalent alternative fuel option this decade.

A need for training for dealing with advanced digital technologies was also seen with 81% of respondents saying the need full or partial training in the further automation of equipment/systems, advanced sensors, artificial intelligence, and remote operations. Onlky 13% felt they were currently well trained.

Shore-based remote-control centres capable of remote operation of some ship functions received a luke-warm response with only 40% thing such centres would make their jobs easier.

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