19 May 2015: Vessel TRIAGE is a multinational project, established by the Finnish Border Guard as the responsible maritime search and rescue authority, the Finnish Transport Safety Agency and the Finnish Transport Agency to develop a categorisation and risk identification system for vessels in ship accidents.
A uniform, international categorisation system describing the safety status of a vessel is necessary in order to assess the seriousness of the vessel's situation and to facilitate decision-making regarding search and rescue. Categorisation enables rapid identification of the key operational risks and a commensurable vessel status in order to guarantee appropriate SAR and further operations.
The goal of the system is to facilitate the maintenance of situational awareness between the authorities and the distress vessel, and enhance the communications between them. Categorisation would make the cooperation between SAR services and various actors significantly more effective – both nationally and internationally.
As part of the categorisation system, the project will also create an electronic risk assessment tool. The tool's main purpose is to facilitate the situational awareness of the vessel and the MRCC concerning the vessel's status and prevailing risks. Actors participating in the events on shore, for example in the preparation of place of refuge decisions and at evacuation centres, would also benefit from the categorisation system.
Development of the Vessel TRIAGE system began at the Finnish Border Guard in 2012 and the intention is for further multinational development of the system through the project. The project will be implemented between July 2014 and May 2015, funded by the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland.