Hazards and Risks of Automated Passenger Ferry Operations in Norway

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Conference Proceedings
Authors: Stig O JohnsenChristoph ThiemeThor MyklebustEven HolteKay FjørtoftØrnulf Jan Rødseth

Abstract: The objective of this paper is to document experiences of hazard-analysis and risk analysis of automated passenger ferries planned to be operated in sheltered waters in Norway. The operation of autonomous ferries in Norway requires permission from the Norwegian Maritime Authority. This paper aims to describe hazard and risk analyses that address the requirements for operating autonomous and automated ferries. Two cases of automated ferry operations have been explored, both in sheltered water. One case with max 25Pax (persons on board) close to shore (2,5 km), and another case involving fjord crossing with max 130Pax (distance 16 km).The methods suggested have been based on the framework specified by IMO, guidelines for Maritime Autonomous Surface Ships (MASS) trials (MSC.1-Circ.1604) and the Concept of operation (ConOps) guidelines from the Maritime Safety Authority in Norway (SDIR RSV 12-2020). The first step has been to perform a hazard identification (i.e. HAZID analysis) of the two cases of automated passenger ferries in Norway in collaboration with key stakeholders (manufactures, maritime authority, operators and researches). The approach has been based on Action Research, building on industry experience and the risk perception of the stakeholders, through virtual and physical meetings. The hazid has been based on safety critical task analysis, building on prior experience/incidents; review of critical tasks and prioritization of hazards that may impact personnel safety and security. Based on the identified hazards (i.e. top events and initiating events), we have selected design options and "state of the art" solutions that should mitigate and/or reduce consequences of the level of automation that has been chosen for the ferries.We have described the relevant hazards and mitigating actions from an human factors perspective and the possible way forward to realize low- or unmanned passenger ferries in sheltered waters. We have identified five areas of concern together with the stakeholders, i.e.: Fire, Collision/Grounding, Man Overboard, Evacuation, and Sensor Failure. In addition we have described further work to identify gaps in the design with respect to the current rules and the requirements of search and rescue operations concerning the autonomous ferries' capabilities, based on acceptable adaptations as mentioned in IMO Guidelines for the Approval of Alternatives and Equivalents (MSC.1/Circ. 1455).

Keywords: Maritime safety, Autonomous Shipping, Hazard analysis, Human Factors

DOI: 10.54941/ahfe1002312

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