The first phase of a new Missing Seafarers Register, as part of the Human Rights at Sea's Missing Seafarers Reporting Programme, has gone live.
The platform was set up to build an accurate international database of the status of seafarers and fishermen missing at sea on a global basis.
According to HRAS, the programme has been designed to keep the issue of seafarers and fishermen lost at sea alive and raise awareness by profiling individual cases to maritime authorities, NGOs, flag states, governments and ship owners among others.
Barrister and founder of HRAS, David Hammond said: “The delivery of the first publicly available phases of the Missing Seafarers Reporting Programme has been an immense effort from all those involved. The initial funding provided by Seafarers UK put HRAS in the position of being able to rapidly develop this vanguard concept alongside the team from C Data Services, and to expedite its introduction to both the maritime and international communities in only four months from concept to delivery. This platform will become an HRAS flagship programme and its global importance has not been lost on any of the entities involved in its conceptual and practical development."
In time, HRAS says the programme will become a multilingual database where cases of missing fishermen and mariners can be registered and tracked. It will also have the ability for people with key information to post and update details through a moderated and securely encrypted platform.
Operations director of C Data Services, Mike Robinson built the programme said: “There are currently no statistics available on the number of people missing from the 1.5 million registered seafarers worldwide. This makes the Missing Seafarers Register a valuable resource for investigation and analysis, as well as emphasising the global scale of this issue to a wider audience."
The Missing Seafarers Reporting Programme is the first stage in quantifying the global scale of missing seafarers and fishermen. While the launch version has been completed using the first round of funding, finance is now being sought for the final development phases to make it multi-lingual, available via App and with embedded statistical analysis tools.