CLIA’s Duffy to testify on safety

Christine Duffy, president and CEO of Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA), will represent the cruise industry today (March 1) before the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation at a hearing titled “Oversight of the Cruise Ship Industry: Are Current Regulations Sufficient to Protect Passengers & the Environment?” Duffy will address cruise ship industry practices with regard to safety, security and environmental protection. While the hearing will review the Costa Concordia incident of Jan. 13, Duffy will also provide a broader industry perspective on the regulation of cruise ships and the industry’s commitment to safety and environmental stewardship. In her formal testimony, Duffy will state: “CLIA’s mission is to promote the policies and practices that foster a safe, secure and healthy cruise ship environment for our guests. Safety is the cruise industry’s number one priority,” Regarding the Concordia, Duffy will state that: “The Concordia incident has had a significant impact on our industry. I speak for all our cruise line members in expressing our deepest condolences to everyone affected by this tragedy. As an industry, we are wholly committed to examining what happened and to identifying lessons that can be learned.” CLIA member cruise lines’ immediate response included the launch of a Cruise Industry Operational Safety Review — a comprehensive assessment of the critical human factors and operational aspects of maritime safety. The Review includes internal reviews, consultation with external experts, sharing of best practices, and collaboration with international regulatory agencies and governments. The cruise industry has already begun implementing changes as a result of the Review, including a new muster drill policy announced on Feb. 9 that exceeds existing legal requirements by providing that musters — or mandatory briefings for passengers on emergency procedures — be conducted prior to a ship leaving port. Duffy’s testimony will also highlight the cruise industry’s strong commitment to protecting the environment in which it operates, including the implementation of responsible practices and investments in new technologies to address waste-water treatment, emissions reduction and overall reduction of the environmental impact of cruising. “Our industry has a vested interest in protecting the environment, not only because it is the socially responsible thing to do, but because the very nature of our product depends on a healthy natural environment — clean oceans and beaches are essential to the cruise experience. CLIA has made great strides to become a leader in the maritime industry with responsible practices and innovations that are reducing environmental impact,” states Duffy in her testimony. The cruise industry actively worked with Committee Members to enact the Cruise Vessel Security and Safety Act, which was signed into law by President Obama in 2010. The legislation aims to bring consistency and clarity to the security and safety laws and regulations for the cruise industry in the United States. CLIA members are actively implementing improvements in compliance with effective provisions of the legislation, including crime reporting provisions, use of latch and computerized key technology, and the requirements that log books include all reports of crime and thefts over $1,000. Go to for more.