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Ensuring Safety at Sea

Updated: Mar 28, 2023

It’s a sad fact, but the World Health Organisation estimates 236,000 people drown every year. Worse, the RNLI labels this estimate “conservative”.

Since travelling by sea remains vital for commercial, travel and leisure pursuits, and the functioning of the global economy, it is a problem that needs to be addressed.


In the face of this tragic and unnecessary loss of life, Sirius Insight believes passionately in the need to make the world’s oceans safer and it has developed solutions designed to help governments, public authorities, and coastal communities achieve this.


Traditional methods have historically involved manual watchkeeping, with lifeguards on beaches, lifeboats patrolling waters and, in some situations, air coverage to spot and provide assistance. With sea routes becoming busier, however, and resources being ever more thinly spread, innovative and affordable solutions need to be found.


Technological solutions of various kinds have, therefore, been deployed across the territorial waters of many nations. Primarily, these rely on monitoring by Automatic Identification Systems (AIS), transponders that automatically supply positioning, identification and other safety-related information to other vessels and to relevant coastal and marine authorities. There are, however, significant issues about relying solely on this technology: not all sizes and types of vessel are required to provide AIS information; not all those who are required to share the information elect to do so, particularly in circumstances where illicit activity may be involved; and, in congested areas, the time between signals being sent and received may be dangerously long as satellites struggle to separate and decode the messages from multiple vessels sailing in close proximity to one another.


Recognising the problems resulting from over-reliance on this one-dimensional method of watchkeeping, Sirius Insight is uniquely able to combine multiple surveillance and monitoring solutions to keep the world’s seas and its mariners safer from harm than they have ever been.


Our innovative technology platform brings together in one place AIS tracking combined with remote cameras, radar, thermal cameras, and communication systems analysis, to create a more topographically detailed, safer and more secure understanding of the marine environment in real time, and all the time. These multiple inputs are autonomously blended by our cutting edge, patented AI software to create an exceptionally detailed picture of vessels and their movements. This, in turn, enables us to provide automatic alerts to the relevant authorities who can provide assistance to those who are or may imminently be in trouble at sea.


As well as notifying authorities as to the whereabouts of vessels in distress, our AI systems can simultaneously alert those aboard vessels to the imminent danger they may be facing: for example nearby hazards, collision risks with other larger vessels, or people facing difficulty in the water.


We believe the best way to keep our seas safe is by providing autonomous and cost-effective monitoring, analysis, and alerting of activity at sea. Our solution relieves pressure on human resources, enabling them to focus on the priority of responding to confirmed distress calls and it provides a more-complete, more-actionable, and more-effective insight into dangers at sea.


We currently operate our life-saving systems at locations around the UK including the National Coastwatch Institution site at Folkestone. We always welcome requests to deploy our technology in new locations to help protect lives and safeguard vessels and communities. It’s a privilege for us to be able to play our part in reducing the risk of death and injury at sea. Now the technology exists to reduce mortality rates at sea, it’s hard to see what possible reason there could be for not doing more to achieve this, right now.


Sources:


https://rnli.org/what-we-do/international/the-global-drowning-problem

https://www.who.int/health-topics/drowning

https://www.maritimeoptima.com/blogdata/ais-and-the-main-categories-of-ais-challenges

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