OVERVIEW

Meridian.us is pleased to support cruise vessel operators in achieving their goals of promoting the safety and security of passengers, crews, and assets by providing security training, physical security, response plan preparation, and incident management.

BACKGROUND

The cruise industry continues to experience significant growth. For example, the Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) projected its members will serve 25.3 million passengers in 2017, compared to 17.8 million in 2009. In meeting the increasing demand, the industry is planning to build 97 new ships over the next ten years.

The cruise industry is a heavily regulated industry. All cruise ships are designed and operated in compliance with the strict requirements of the International Maritime Organization (IMO), e.g., the International Ship and Port Facility Security (ISPS) Code. They are subject to periodic inspections and surveys by their Flag State and Port State authorities, and classification society.

From 2014 to 2016, the Coast Guard National Response Center annually received about 65 incident reports from cruise ship operators. The U.S. Department of Transportation reported significant increase in the number of alleged sexual assaults on board cruise vessels. Also, the U.S. Coast Guard reported access deficiency remains a serious problem. (see Appendix A).

Consequently, new laws, e.g., Cruise Vessel Security and Safety Act (CVSSA), have been recently passed to enhance safety of passengers. Additionally, CLIA developed best practices for safeguarding children in youth activity centers.

OUR COMPANY

In 2009, Meridian.us was formed to provide a cost‐effective solution to combating piracy. We were the first US‐based, ISO 28007‐certified maritime security firm. Since then we have also achieved ISO 9001 certification and today we provide comprehensive services that promote safety, security, and environmental protection.

Meridian.us personnel have extensive experience in security, law enforcement, critical energy infrastructure, incident and crisis management, and regulatory compliance in the government and private sectors. Our team members have served in senior security and regulatory roles with government agencies and Fortune 500 companies.

Our subject matter experts have demonstrated the technical expertise and ability to deliver the best performance while serving in leadership positions as:

  • Captain of the Port
  • Officer in Charge, Marine Inspection
  • Federal Maritime Security Coordinator
  • Federal On Scene Coordinator
  • Federal Security Director
  • Corporate Health, Safety and Environmental Director
  • Corporate Security Director
  • Corporate Marine Operations Director
  • Port and Maritime Security Specialists
  • Criminal Investigations
  • Marine Salvage

Additionally, our personnel have the following certifications:

  • Transportation Senior Executive Service Member
  • Professional Engineer
  • ISM, ISO 9001, & 14001 Auditor
  • Marine Inspector
  • Marine Casualty Investigator
  • Criminal Investigator
  • ICS Instructor
  • Homeland Security Exercise Evaluator
  • ISPS Instructor and Auditor

Meridian.us has extensive experience in the compliance and enforcement of federal maritime safety, security and environmental protection laws and regulations, and international standards. Examples include:

  • Maritime Transportation Security Act (MTSA)
  • 33 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) 104 Maritime Security: Vessels
  • 33 CFR 105 Maritime Security: Facilities
  • 33 CFR 126 Handling of Dangerous Cargo at Waterfront Facilities
  • 33 CFR 127 Waterfront Facilities Handling Liquefied Natural Gas and Liquefied Hazardous Gas
  • 33 CFR 154 Facilities Transferring Oil or Hazardous Materials in Bulk
  • 33 CFR 155 Oil or Hazardous Material Pollution Prevention Regulations for Vessels
  • 33 CFR 156 Oil and Hazardous Material Transfer Operations
  • 33 CFR 158 Reception Facilities for Oil, Noxious Liquid Substances, and Garbage
  • 49 CFR 172 – 176 Hazardous Materials Transportation
  • 49 CFR 193 – 194 Pipeline Security and Response
  • Safety of Life At Sea Convention (SOLAS)
  • International Safety Management (ISM) Code
  • International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships (MARPOL)
  • International Ship and Port Facility Security (ISPS) Code
  • International Maritime Dangerous Goods (IMDG) Code
  • International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers (STCW)
  • ISO 9001 Quality Management Systems
  • ISO 14001 Environmental Management System

OUR APPROACH

In delivering a scalable and cost effective solution that meets or exceeds client expectations, Meridian.us uses a risk-based approach and employs highly experienced subject matter experts. We have developed work processes that utilize lessons learned and best practices. We determine areas of emphasis by examining client’s compliance status, industry trends, and regulator’s priorities. We deploy senior consultants who have a broad understanding of the maritime safety net and the necessary knowledge, skills, and judgment to solve your immediate issues and to generate quality performance improvement plan.

OUR SERVICES

In supporting cruise vessel operators in achieving their goals for promoting safety and security of passengers, crews, and assets, we provide the following services:

  • Business Continuity Planning;
  • Contractor risk assessment;
  • Threat assessment;
  • Security and response plans preparation and maintenance;
  • Security training;
  • Support of drills and exercises;
  • Facility response planning;
  • Vessel response planning Physical security;
  • Crowd and protest management;
  • Crisis communication;
  • Incident management;
  • Incident investigation;
  • Safety and environmental management systems assessment and improvement; and
  • Organizational safety culture assessment.

For normal operations, we can help protect cruise vessel and terminal by deploying a team of multi-skilled personnel to provide prevention and response measures (see Appendix B). When comprehensive support is needed for ensuring effective threat assessment, contingency preparedness, and management systems, our highly-experienced project managers and subject matter experts are ready to assist (see Appendix C).

 

Reference: U.S. Department of Transportation Cruise Line Incident Reports

 

 Reference: U.S. Coast Guard Port State Control 2016 Annual Report

 

 

  REQUIREMENTS MERIDIAN SERVICES SHIP PORT
PREVENTION ISPS 5.5 The Declaration of Security shall address the security requirements that could be shared between a port facility and a ship (or between ships) and shall state the responsibility for each. ·       Verify Declaration of Security
ISPS 7.1 A ship is required to act upon the security levels set by Contracting Governments ·       Supplement vessel security force
ISPS 12.2.1 undertaking regular security inspections of the ship to ensure that appropriate security measures are maintained ·       Perform random checks restricted areas
ISPS 12.2.3 coordinating the security aspects of the handling of cargo and ship’s stores with other shipboard personnel and with the relevant port facility security officers ·       Verify access control to vessel
ISPS 12.2.6 enhancing security awareness and vigilance on board ·       Assist with communications
ISPS 14.1 A port facility is required to act upon the security levels set by the Contracting Government within whose territory it is located. ·       Supplement facility security force
ISPS 17.2.4 undertaking regular security inspections of the port facility to ensure the continuation of appropriate security measures ·       Perform random checks restricted areas
ISPS 17.2.6 enhancing security awareness and vigilance of the port facility personnel ·       Assist with communications
ISPS Part B 4.33 Clear Grounds for Compliance and Control Measures ·       Assist in identification of serious security equipment deficiencies
ISPS Part B 9.22 Security Level 1 – Ship

·       Lock or secure access

·       Conduct security patrols

ISPS Part B 9.22 Security Level 2 – Ship

·       Increase Level 1 activities

·       Establish restricted areas adjacent to access points

·       Provide additional personnel to guard and patrol restricted areas

ISPS Part B 9.22 Security Level 3 – Ship

·       Conduct Level 2 activities

·       Set up additional restricted areas

·       Search restricted areas as part of a search of the ship.

ISPS Part B 16.17 Security Level 1 – Facility

·       Check identity of all persons seeking entry to the port facility in connection with a ship

·       Check vehicles used by those seeking entry to the port facility in connection with a ship

PREVENTION (cont.) ISPS Part B 16.17 Security Level 1 – Facility

·       Verify the identity of port facility personnel and those employed within the port facility and their vehicles

·       Restrict access to exclude those not employed by the port facility or working within it, if they are unable to establish their identity

·       Undertake searches of persons, personal effects, vehicles and their contents

ISPS Part B 16.19 Security Level 2 – Facility

·       Conduct Level 1 activities

·       Provide additional personnel to guard access points and patrol perimeter barriers

·       Provide means of impeding movement through the remaining access points, e.g. security barriers

·       Deny access to visitors who are unable to provide a verifiable justification for seeking access to the port facility

·       Deploy patrol vessels to enhance waterside security

ISPS Part B 16.20 Security Level 3 – Facility

·       Conduct Level 2 activities

·       Increase security patrols within the port facility

CVSSA – CG-543 Policy Letter 11-09 ·       Identify noncompliance with shipboard policy to limit crew access to passenger staterooms
CLIA – Safeguarding Children in Youth Activity Centers ·       Guard or patrol centers
RESPONSE MSC.1/Circ.1334 63 Use of privately contracted armed security personnel ·       Provide trained personnel and assist in emergency situations
STCW 95 A-V2 Masters, officers, and other personnel designated on muster lists to assist passengers in emergency situations on board passenger ship shall have completed training in crowd management training as specified in section A-V/2, paragraph 1 of the STCW Code. ·       Provide trained personnel and assist in emergency situations
CVSSA – CG-543 Policy Letter 11-09 ·       Assist with response to criminal activities

 

 

  REQUIREMENTS MERIDIAN SERVICES SHIP PORT
THREAT ASSESSMENT ISPS 15.4 – The port facility security assessments shall periodically be reviewed and updated, taking account of changing threats and/or minor changes in the port facility and shall always be reviewed and updated when major changes to the port facility take place. ·       Identify possible threats to the passengers, crew, vessel and terminal and the likelihood of their occurrence, to establish and prioritize security measures
CONTINGENCY PREPAREDNESS ISPS 8.2 The company security officer shall ensure that the ship security assessment is carried out by persons with appropriate skills to evaluate the security of a ship ·       Lead or support security assessment
ISPS 9.1 The SSA should be reviewed at least once every 12 months ·       Lead or support review of security assessment
ISPS 9.4.1 Personnel conducting internal audits of the security activities specified in the plan or evaluating its implementation shall be independent of the activities being audited unless this is impracticable due to the size and the nature of the Company or of the ship. ·       Lead or support internal audits
ISPS 12.2.7 ensuring that adequate training has been provided to shipboard personnel, as appropriate ·       Provide ISPS training
ISPS 13.4 To ensure the effective implementation of the ship security plan, drills shall be carried out at appropriate intervals taking into account the ship type, ship personnel changes, port facilities to be visited and other relevant circumstances ·       Lead or support
ISPS 13.5 The company security officer shall ensure the effective coordination and implementation of ship security plans by participating in exercises at appropriate intervals ·       Lead or support
ISPS 15.4 The port facility security assessments shall periodically be reviewed and updated, taking account of changing threats and/or minor changes in the port facility and shall always be reviewed and updated when major changes to the port facility take place. ·       Lead or support
ISPS 16.3.1 Personnel conducting internal audits of the security activities specified in the plan or evaluating its implementation shall be independent of the activities being audited unless this is impracticable due to the size and the nature of the port facility. ·       Lead or support
CONTINGENCY PREPAREDNESS (cont.) ISPS 17.2.1 conducting an initial comprehensive security survey of the port facility taking into account the relevant port facility security assessment; ·       Lead or support
ISPS 17.2.2 ensuring the development and maintenance of the port facility security plan ·       Lead or support
ISPS 17.2.3 implementing and exercising the port facility security plan ·       Lead or support
ISPS 17.2.7 ensuring adequate training has been provided to personnel responsible for the security of the port facility ·       Provide ISPS training
ISPS 18.3 To ensure the effective implementation of the port facility security plan, drills shall be carried out at appropriate intervals taking into account the types of operation of the port facility, port facility personnel changes, the type of ship the port facility is serving and other relevant circumstances ·       Lead or support
ISPS 18.4 The port facility security officer shall ensure the effective coordination and implementation of the port facility security plan by participating in exercises at appropriate intervals ·       Lead or support
ISM 5.1.5 Master to periodically review the SMS and reporting its deficiencies to the shore-based management ·       Support
ISM 7 The Company should establish procedures, plans and instructions, including checklist as appropriate, for key shipboard operations concerning the safety of the personnel, ship and protection of the environment. ·       Lead or support
ISM 8.1 The Company should identify potential emergency shipboard situations, and establish procedures to respond to them. ·       Lead or support
ISM 8.2 The Company should establish programs for drills and exercises to prepare for emergency actions. ·       Lead or support
ISM 8.3 The SMS should provide for measures ensuring that the Company’s organization can respond at any time to hazards, accidents and emergency situations involving its ships. ·       Lead or support
CONTINGENCY PREPAREDNESS (cont.) ISM 10.3 The Company should identify equipment and technical systems the sudden operational failure of which may result in hazardous situations. The SMS should provide for specific measures aimed at promoting the reliability of such equipment or systems. These measures should include the regular testing of stand-by arrangements and equipment or technical systems that are not in continuous use. ·       Lead or support
ISM 12.1 The Company should carry out internal safety audits on board and ashore at intervals not exceeding twelve months to verify whether safety and pollution-prevention activities comply with the SMS. ·       Lead or support
ISM 12.3 The Company should periodically evaluate the effectiveness of the SMS in accordance with procedures established by the Company

·       Lead or support

o    Management Review

o    Master’s Review

o    Organizational Safety Culture Assessment

MSC.1/Circ.1334 15 All ships operating in waters or ports where attacks occur should carry out a security assessment as a preparation for development of measures to prevent attacks of pirates or armed robbers against ships and on how to react should an attack occur. ·       Lead or support
MSC.1/Circ.1334 16 The ship security plan∗ or emergency response procedures should be prepared based on the risk assessment, detailing predetermined responses to address increases and decreases in threat levels. ·       Lead or support
PREVENTION MARPOL Annex I

·       MARPOL Compliance Verification

o    Oil Record Book

o    Ballast Water Management

o    Waste Stream Management

RESPONSE ISM 9.1 The SMS should include procedures ensuring that non- conformities, accidents, and hazardous situations are reported to the Company, investigated and analyzed with the objective of improving safety and pollution prevention.

·       Lead or support

o    Incident investigation

CLIA – Cruise Lines International Association

CVSSA – Cruise Vessel Security and Safety Act

IMO – International Maritime Organization

ISPS – International Ship and Port Facility Security Code

MARPOL – International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships

MSC – IMO Maritime Safety Committee

STCW – Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers Convention

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