There is much talk about security on land, but what about safety in the open seas?
Maritime safety is an umbrella for many categories, which include: search and rescue, radio communications, fire protection, maritime security and piracy, to name a few.
Wireless radio has always been a valuable tool in communication. When a vessel is in distress, help can soon be dispatched if a call is transmitted by wireless radio. The problem is that wireless has limited distance capability. Satellites have since proven to be an improvement. Such devices evidently play a vital role in search and rescue operations at sea.
The International Maritime Organization (IMO) has evolved into the International Maritime Satellite Organization, (Inmarsat), with an intention to focus on emergency maritime communications. Global Maritime Distress Safety Systems (GMDSS) was established as part of Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS), which highlights the importance of global maritime distress and safety systems.
GMDSS is an integrated communication system, which assists in protecting lives at sea. It consists of several parts that work together to function cohesively. The system consists of, determining the vessel in distress by an alert, search and rescue coordination, locating, maritime safety information broadcasts, and various types of relative communications. It is an internationally agreed upon set of safety procedures and protocols used to increase safety and make it easier to rescue vessels in distress.
The latest technologies of maritime safety systems, provide sophisticated ship-to-ship communications, as well as ship to shore.