Our section member, BG Verkehr, hosted the online industry conference on maritime shipping “Asbestos on board – what to do?”, which took place on 10 March 2021 from 1 to 5 pm CET. The focus was on the dangers posed by materials containing asbestos, which are still being discovered on board ships. Within the framework of a multilateral exchange of experiences, international guests learned more about the regulations and solutions practiced in Germany.
Ship owners must act immediately
Despite bans that have been in place for many years, materials containing asbestos are still being found on board seagoing vessels. This also applies to ships flying the German flag and even to ships constructed recently for which the shipyard has certified that they are free of asbestos.
Asbestos and materials containing asbestos were used on ships mainly as fire and heat protection insulation and as a sealing material. The carcinogenic effect of inhaled asbestos fibres on human lung tissue has been known since the beginning of the 20th century. Based on scientifically proven findings, occupational diseases caused by asbestos were included in the German Regulation on Occupational Diseases. Even today, more people insured under the statutory accident insurance scheme die from the late effects of asbestos than from the effects of occupational accidents. Ship owners who, for example, find asbestos on board their ships while fulfilling their Hong Kong Convention (HKC) obligations must act immediately.
Ask the experts through the online chat
But what should be done if asbestos is found on board? With this online industry conference, BG Verkehr would like to promote the search for answers and raise awareness of this important topic among representatives of shipping companies. During the conference, experts will provide background information and point out possible courses of action for affected companies. Transparency is to be created as to where and to what extent materials containing asbestos are to be expected and what measures must be taken to avoid the risk to crew and third parties from exposure to asbestos. The conference participants will have the opportunity to ask their questions to the speakers using the chat function.
Program and participation
A panel discussion and additional written information round off the program. Thanks to a chat function, you can submit your questions to the speakers at any time. The complete timetable of the event can be found here.
For further questions, please contact the General Secretariat.