Guest Blog from Head of Safety and Compliance at Condor Ferries


At Condor Ferries we have been working to completely overhaul our safety management system during the past two years, this has been about creating a clear simple framework for our professional team members to work within, always with the end user in mind. We now have structured safety meetings and safety visits across our vessels and shore locations as well as monitoring our incidents for trends and to ensure lessons are learned. Hand in hand with this project has been a re-focus on our Safety First campaign.

 Safety First has four objectives:

 1. Visible commitment from senior management

2. Safety issues are dealt with efficiently

3. Organisational learning

4. Realistic procedures

 To ensure these objectives are met we have worked with teams and individuals across the business to re-develop supporting systems i.e. permit to work, risk assessment and safe systems of work.  

 We have worked hard to develop and implement a role-based system for our bridge teams and emphasised safe vehicle movement.

 We recognise the need to improve our use of leading indicators, so we have introduced a company safety induction which includes online training, as well as additional safety training for key ship and shore personnel. This has helped to create an environment where safety concerns have a voice and issues are reported.

 Company culture is something that I have valued for much of my career, both at sea and ashore. There have been occasions that I have taken it for granted because it was so well established that it was in the fabric of who we were. At Condor Ferries we are taking steps to ensure that our safety culture is cultivated and protected so that eventually it will just become the way we do things.

 The UK Chamber of shipping (CoS) charter is very much aligned with our own ethos of driving a just culture where open reporting is essential. Through engagement with the CoS we have been able to realise that we were not alone in finding our SMS had become so complex and vast that it was difficult to comply with and audit. The CoS provides a great platform to share ideas as a collective, benchmark and work to adopt industry best practices.

 We are proud to be sponsoring the launch of the charter and have woven it into the fabric of our own health and safety policy by stating our adherence.

Leanna Lakes

Head of Safety and Compliance

Condor Ferries