Outputs & Feedback

The Global Fishing Industry Accident Data Management System

What role does feedback play in “closing the loop”?  

The efficiency with which a program like the FISHER Project collects and stores data is only part of the incident reporting story.  Far more crucial is the strength of the Outputs – the reporting system’s feedback loop to the reporters and industry it serves.  

Feedback nurtures the analytic process of “truth-seeking,” of developing new knowledge and understanding about operational problems in a complex system, and enables the users of an incident reporting system to learn. A reporting system’s feedback mechanisms directly reach the system’s users, enable this learning process to take place, and help ensure that corrective actions will be appropriate and effective.

The Foundation will use three main mechanisms to provide this feedback. Firstly; for technical and management system failures / lessons learnt, we will use the existing crewSAFE Program as the framework for corrective action. This will allow us to continuously update the Program as required, and keep the Industry informed of the changes. A series of “Lessons Learnt” PowerPoint training packages are currently available, and these will be constantly reviewed and added to as required.

Given that the human is the most commonly reported incident causation factor, paying close attention to the human element is critically important if we are to reduce the accident and fatality rates in commercial fishing. Our second feedback mechanism therefore is the Fishing Alert! Program. We have been given permission to use The Nautical Institute’s hugely successful Alert! Series as a basis for this work. The Alert! Series was started in 2003, and ran for some 12 years, ultimately setting the Industry benchmark by producing 40 Human Element-themed publications, and a number of accompanying videos. We will use this model to develop a fishing-specific series, aimed at addressing a range of critical Human Element issues for the industry. The Fishing Alert! series will also have a strong emphasis on a “lessons learnt” approach, tackling human factors, occupational health and other critical “people” issues.

Initially the Fishing Alert! series will be made available online – and we will use social media extensively to actively promote the Human Element to the widest possible audience. Phase two of the Project would focus on the publishing of the developed material in a hard copy format – aiming to get a regular copy of the Fishing Alert! to as many fishing vessels as possible. And Phase three will focus on the development of visual media (videos / YouTube / Apps / etc), in conjunction with an increased emphasis on training and education.

So, by using the information gained from the FISHER Project, and by re-developing the original Alert! Series to reflect the particular needs and circumstances of commercial fishing participants, we will be able to provide a much needed resource for the fishing industry.  

Finally, there is a critical need for new Research – especially in the Human Element and Occupational Health disciplines. The Foundation is ideally placed and resourced to undertake specific research projects for industry participants and other organisations.

Strong feedback mechanisms will encourage individuals to continue reporting, and offer assurance that the information they provide is being well used.

The accident reporting and analysis feedback loop consists of four indispensable elements:

  • Reporters
  • Their narratives;
  • The database of accident records; and
  • The learning that takes place from the information disseminated* – fed back to the reporters and others in the industry
The FSF will also use the information gained from the Project to feed back into our Fishing Alert! Program and crewSAFE Program initiatives. Further, we will provide a report-back portal to share the stories, and the valuable learnings arising from the misfortune of others.

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