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I am copying here part of a message I received today from Stein Kruse, President and CEO of Holland America Line. He reiterates the company's strong commitment to safety. I thought it worth putting on my blog.
I am joined by a solid team of professionals who understand the critical importance of safety, many of whom have long careers at sea, whether on cruise ships, commercial ships or serving in the Coast Guard, Navy or other professional maritime organizations. Among them is Captain Cees Deelstra, our Vice President, Nautical Operations, who started his forty-year career with Holland America Line as a cadet, ultimately attaining his own command as a master before accepting a position shoreside to oversee the safe operations of our fleet. Similarly, Captain William Morani, our Vice President, Safety, Environment and Health, served for twenty-five years in the U.S. Coast Guard Marine Safety Program before joining Holland America Line. All of our captains have spent decades at sea and all have a solid record of safely sailing passenger vessels. Most have spent their career with Holland America Line.
All shipboard personnel undergo comprehensive regular safety training. This includes live onboard training, computer based courses and state of the art simulator training. We hold regular shoreside conferences for senior officers to discuss safety and other critical issues, the last as recent as October 2011. All crew participate in regular drills to ensure they know what their role is in the event of an emergency. We also drill our shoreside response team so that we are always prepared, including a simulated mass rescue exercise with the U.S. Coast Guard in Alaska.
You also need not rely solely on my word for all of this. Like every passenger vessel, each ship in our fleet undergoes mandatory inspections by Lloyds, our classification society, as well as by the Netherlands (our flag state), by the U.S. Coast Guard, and by other regulatory authorities based in the countries we visit.