Motivation and objectives
FADs fishing generates new working situations which are accompanied by new risks. Safety and the working conditions at sea, relating to the boats and their gear used in this new fishing context of fishing associated to the FADs, have not been approached up to now, although they were identified as significant. The laying of the FADs in the water from small fishing boats, or the hand hoisting of fish catches weighing sometimes several hundred kilogrammes have already caused fatal accidents. The long-term consequences of the violent physical efforts from the crews, with bad postures imposed by the limited space and the lack of equipment onboard should be attentively examined in order to find out relevant solutions.
Project "MAGDELESA" envisages having a part devoted to the issue of working conditions and safety around the FADs. The objective is to identify the main risks the fishermen are exposed to.
Material and methods
The incidents, almost accidents and actual accidents are often more numerous in the adjusting phases. The pioneers, direct witnesses of these degraded situations, can, if they take the time to think, learn lessons from the incidents, near accidents and accidents, and modify the equipment and the work procedures and also sensitize the sailors as to the “risky” parts of their operation (training). But this knowledge gained from live experiences are scattered on the ships and the feedback is not shared. The objective will be to improve and share the experience feedbacks following accidents or almost accidents. To do so, the following will be required :
- Localizing possible statistical data on the accidents and chronic health attacks kept by local government agencies (marine safety at sea, health divisions…),
- identifying victims and/or witnesses of accidents, in order to interview them on the causes of the most serious and recurring types of accidents,
- Selecting reference situations to carry out field experiments. The choice will be made with the assistance of the fishermen and the FADS fishing technology experts, and will reflect the main types of ships and FADs used, the various levels of gear aboard and the variations (if they exist) in embarked manpower,
- Going to the reference situations in order to assess the risks through observations and discussions with the crews. The situational outings will also be used for pictures and video shooting that will then be used for feedback to other fishermen and longer-term design of teaching aids.
The field expertise and outings must involve fisheries staff, who must also be there for the result feedback. It will be necessary, indeed, to make them know for themselves and seek to translate the results, or have them translated in actions by the various actors and stakeholders of the fisheries sector.
This work may be of interest to :
- developers, to complement their regulations or for designing incentives for upgrading of landing spots and fishing boats,
- shipyards for the improvement of the fishing boats,
- fishing cooperatives seeking new onboard equipment
Trainers for initial or continuous vocational training, etc.
A comparative approach on several islands has been selected for this study on the safety and working conditions in moored FADs fishing. To this end, four islands were retained: Guadeloupe, Martinique, Dominica and Saint Lucia (St Vincent?). To carry this out, an engineer-occupational designer will make 12 outings at sea (daytime), that is to say 3 per island. The observations at sea will be supplemented by 8 days of investigation, that is to say 2 days per island. Work will be carried out during two 15 day missions. Eighteen days will be necessary for processing the data and finalizing the results, conclusions and recommendations.
One engineer who will be supported by relevant divisions in the French islands and the fisheries managers in Dominica and St Vincent.
A tentative work programme is given below for informative purposes. Changes to the schedule may be made in coordination with the « institutional analysis » part.
- Field operations : November 2007 – February 2008.
- Data processing : December 2007 – March 2008.
- Month 24 : Présentation of results.
Work in progress
- Working documents