Strategic focus on prevention for Pacific maritime safety

Pacific search and rescue. Picture: RNZ

A maritime safety specialist in New Zealand says the strategic focus in the Pacific is on preventing disaster before it happens.

Maritime NZ’s Nigel Clifford is running a safety programme for officials from the Cook Islands, Kiribati, Niue, Samoa, Tokelau, Tonga and Tuvalu as well as New Zealand this week in Wellington.

The programme is in preparation for an International Maritime Organisation audit of each country.

Mr Clifford said there is also a focus on disaster response as Pacific nations always have to be prepared for accidents and incidents.

“But the long term aim is to try and improve the overall system and try to make the system safe but also workable. Obviously in the Pacific, lots of challenges and you can progress only incrementally,” Nigel Clifford said.