Seawise Monitor

How Stable is Your Vessel?

Bringing commercial fishermen safely home

Bringing Commercial Fishermen Safely Home

Article published by Lloyd’s Register Foundation on their website.

Our grant to Hook Marine will save the lives of seafarers engaged in the most dangerous of all careers – fishing. Hook Marine are the brains behind SeaWise®, a tablet-sized device that monitors the stability of fishing boats in rough sea conditions, giving seafarers for the first time the information they need to protect crews from unnecessary risks.

In many coastal towns there are memorials to fishing boats and their crews who have been lost at sea, and mortality casts a stubbornly heavy shadow over the fishing industry. Commercial fishermen are 110 times more likely to lose their lives at work than the average employee.

“While there are many hazards facing all seafarers, those encountered by commercial fishermen are among the worst,” according to Kenneth Smith, Director of Hook Marine, “The accident statistics showing loss of life and loss of vessels are not acceptable in the 21st century.”

The most common cause of accidents on fishing boats, say figures published by the UK Marine Accident Investigation Branch, and echoed by the US Coastguard, is instability. This is often caused by flooding or icing leading to foundering or capsizing. It is estimated that up to 65% of all fishing vessel losses are the result of inadequate stability.

The stability of a fishing boat is not a constant – it can shift and deteriorate without the crew realising that anything has changed, because of water coming on board, or when a catch (of unpredictable size) is loaded far out at sea.

Stability can also be affected by any change to equipment or design. In 2018 the prawn trawler, Nancy Glen, capsized in Loch Fyne because a new crane on deck made it unstable. Two of the crew drowned. The Chief inspector of Marine Accidents, Andrew Moll said: “The capsize and sinking of Nancy Glen, which resulted in the tragic loss of two respected Tarbert fishermen, has again demonstrated the consequences of not knowing how stable a boat is.

“Too many of the UK’s small fishing vessels have no baseline measure of their stability, so their operators cannot assess the effect of material modifications or changes to fishing methods.”

This lack of a way of measuring stability at sea was the driving force behind the development of SeaWise®. Supporting Hook Marine in finding a solution to this problem is perfectly aligned with the Foundation’s mission to protect life and property at sea. Hook Marine sought funding from us when they needed to put SeaWise® to the test in rough water with steep-sided waves, or waves reflected from rocky shorelines.

“We had done initial work on a monitor that gauges fishing boats’ stability by looking at the metacentric height of the vessel. It worked well on calm seas but we needed support to develop the device to work in choppier waters,” explains Kenneth.

The SeaWise® monitor logs the loss of stability through continuous roll period measurement and sets off an alarm when the metacentric height is reduced to 0.35m, the minimum value specified by the International Maritime Organisation (IMO).

Our grant has allowed Hook to test SeaWise® using a wave basin at the engineering laboratories of the University of Edinburgh. They have also done trials at sea which have proved its success on different types of fishing vessel.

“Having SeaWise® on board gives crews essential, early warning that a boat is becoming unstable, allowing them to take corrective action and to keep out of harm’s way,” says Kenneth.

“In earlier times the arrival of the ship’s barometer was credited with saving lives by warning captains of approaching stormy weather; we think SeaWise® has the potential to do the same thing, and bring more fishermen safely home.”

Article courtesy of Lloyd’s Register Foundation – Source

Staying Safe at Sea

Staying Safe at Sea

A recent online event hosted by the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Fisheries explored the issue of safety onboard fishing vessels, and how the efforts of communication, legislation, technology and industry uptake can help make fishing a safer profession.

Please find below the excerpt of the Hook Marine session reproduced with the kind permission of APPG on Fisheries.

For the full event recording and the Q&A session please follow the link below

What A Show

What A Show!

Hook Marine visits the Pacific Marine Expo 2019

What a Show! The show is one of the largest in the world, and takes place every November in Seattle, WA.

It is ideally placed for doing business with the Pacific Northwest fleet who fish the treacherous waters of Alaska. The range of equipment on show was extensive, and the Main Hall extended to 15 aisles! The Alaska Hall had further booths to view, plus dedicated areas for seminars and workshops – around 440 booths in all.

The seminars were of real interest, on topics including safety. Why not have teaching and training sessions for fishermen at all our exhibitions? Or contact us for individual company sessions on vessel stability monitoring?

Be Safe – Be Stable

Hook Marine Ltd | PO Box 8578 Troon KA10 6WQ Scotland

Tel +44 (0)1292679500 | |

Seafood Cornwall Training Update

Seafood Cornwall Training will be holding safety update sessions during the week of 30th September.

Hook Marine is delighted to be taking part, and looks forward to meeting everyone concerned with fishing safety at the following ports:

  • Monday 30th September: Newlyn
  • Tuesday 1st October: Newquay
  • Wednesday 2nd October: Padstow
  • Thursday 3rd October: Mevagissey
  • Friday 4th October: Looe

Come and see our SeaWise stability monitor which gives you a real-time read-out of your stability reserves while at sea. Come and talk to us, and find out if we can make life safer at sea for you.

Be safe! Be stable!

Vessel Losses in Commercial Fishing

Vessel Losses in Commercial Fishing

Vessel Losses in Commercial Fishing – Step Changes Required

The accident rates in commercial fishing remain stubbornly high for both crews and fishing vessels. During the UK Maritime Safety Week it is appropriate to consider action that can be put in place now.

Vessel Losses in Commercial Fishing – what is required is action to bring about a step change in the accident rates?

First of all, we must look at the reasons for disasters, whether they happen when fishing or when sailing to or from the fishing grounds.

One factor stands out above all others. The stability of fishing vessels is largely an unknown factor for the owners or the crew. Even when a vessel’s stability is assessed when newly built (not all are), the stability of a vessel changes constantly during a voyage, with fuel and water being consumed in normal operation. However, many adverse factors can alter the stability of a boat including water ingress to the hull, water on deck, icing on the superstructure, overloading, and unchecked vessel modifications.

A solution is now ready for use on your boat. The SeaWise™ stability monitor is now available for new vessel installation or for retrofitting to existing boats.

Be stable – Come home safely

If you – boat owner, skipper, regulator, naval architect, surveyor, marine engineer, safety practitioner – share our concerns, please contact us for further information on this innovative early warning device.

Hook Marine Ltd | +44 (0)1292 679500 | |