All time high when Swedish Mercantile Marine Foundation rewarded seafarers

The Swedish Mercantile Marine Foundation has never before rewarded so many innovations as of this year. Perhaps it is a sign of a prsoperous shipping sector, said the chairman of the Foundation, Christer Themnér, when he opened the 2018 rewarding cermony.

The Swedish Mercantile Marine Foundation has since 1977 awarded rewards to seafarers who have made efforts to improve working conditions at sea. This year, 57 rewards were handed out, worth a total of 720,000 SEK. Among the winners are many examples of great inventiveness.

Oil spill piping system
Börje Jansson at IB Atle has designed a piping system that makes it possible to empty spill oil and the like without having to deal with cans and buckets down several ladders. Börje Jansson was rewarded with SEK 10,000 and thanked the Foundation.

- Without the foundation, these inventions would stay on the respective ships. Many thanks to the foundation for the reward system, says Börje Jansson.

A problem for Stena has been travelers with bicycles mixed with other rolling cargo, it has been crowded and stressful both on dock and ships. But through a bicycle trailer, both passengers' safety and the working environment have improved. The cyclists can now leave their bikes on the bicycle trailer and then board the ship together with the pedestrians while the trailer is being taken on board.

Benefit for both wallet and the environment
On the ship M/S Scandica, there was a problem that the power supply cable from shore did not provide sufficient power to keep the vessels' necessary systems running. Calculations led to the conclusion that there was unnecessary inductive loads on board, ultimately leading to higher current in the cable. By installing an active capacitor battery, the inductive load could be removed and the load on the power supply cable reduced by 20 percent, benefiting both wallet and environment.

The literature award goes to Eric Hallberg, Nils Sjökvist and Göran Sändare from the newspaper Länspumpen's editorial board. The trio gets the price for its more than 100-sided special numbers about school and student ships. The sports awards foundation was given to the crew of M/S Ida H, who performed excellently in the sport competition Sjöpokalen. This year's honor reward went to ship historian Krister Bång, editor of the book Sweden's Maritime Index.

Rescued thirteen lives
A particularly noticeable event last year was when the crew at Wallenius M/S Undine discovered floating containers, a life raft and distressed people in the Malacka strait one morning last summer. With the help of the ship's rescue boat, the crew managed to rescue thirteen Indonesian seamen who had been in the water for over six hours.

- We stopped the engine and deployed our rescue boat. The distressed people were in the middle of the strait and might have been passed by about 20 ships that all drove past. It is also remarkable that there is a VTS in the area and they have not responded to the disappearance of the ship, told the ship's commander Fredrik Krysén.

The rescue initiative is rewarded by the Foundation with SEK 20,000 and earlier the crew has also received the award "Seafarer of the year" in a ceremony at the Lloyd's List Global Award.

Read more about the rewards at the Swedish Mercantile Marine Foundation website (in Swedish):  http://www.sjomanshus.se/