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2016 Mar Apr Marina World

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TRAINING, EDUCATION & CERTIFICATION takes to get help, and where the best access points are for help, be it fire trucks, police cars or ambulances (e.g. avoiding small gates, tight curves etc.) and how vehicles best circulate when inside the boundaries of the property. In the EU, drills involving the EU emergency number 112, for fire brigade and harbour authorities are encouraged and sometimes compulsory. Certification There are different levels of certification. Some are local, some nationwide and others are international. All certifications offer instant acknowledgement of a level of quality, safety and experience. When you see the ISO 9001 logo, you know that the bearer follows a procedure of controls and training that is logged and kept for reference. In the marina world there are regional certifications (e.g. the USA Clean Marinas), national ones (e.g. Ports Propres in France) and internationally recognised ones like Gold Anchors, which have a good reputation and have been accepted by marinas all over the world. But Gold Anchor relies on subjective valuations and a system of points. Much of the judgement is left to the auditor, who sometimes lacks a true “black or white” reference base. All decisions left to human judgement are like that. This does not mean that the certification is wrong, it means that is was created and runs on less specific bases and definitions, and it is recognised at a smaller group level. ISO certifications on the other hand are recognised as devoid of any human input. This sounds mechanical but it has great strength as well defined references generate trust. British Standards (BS), USA and international UL and ASTM are other certifications that are adopted worldwide. They are specified in exactly the same way for the whole world. All bodies certified under ISO 14001 fulfil exactly the same conditions in environmental control, for example, be it in Alaska, India or Argentina. And it is recognised by all governments. If you read on a label ‘Made in DE’, AU or DK, you know that it means a product was made in Germany, Australia or Denmark respectively. That’s thanks to ISO 3166, Codes for the representation of names of countries and their subdivisions. ISO was set up in 1945 as an association of 25 countries. Its first standard was for units of measure. Today ISO covers 162 countries and has issued more than 19,000 standards, one of the latest being the ISO 13687 Yacht Harbours - minimum requirements. Three follow-ups are in the offing. The triad The important message is that the three topics under discussion – education, training and certification - are not isolated, but complement each other. But they do not have to be taken to extremes. On the contrary, a good strategy is to start with basic education supported by training, and try a self-audit of a certification with which you think you can be comfortable. Not every university graduate becomes a doctor or wins a Nobel Prize. Everything should be approached with appropriate measure and speed according to the needs of each specific marina. Oscar Siches CMM is a marina consultant and partner/manager of two marinas in Mallorca, Spain. He can be contacted on email: oscar@siches.com www.marinaworld.com - March/April 2016 35

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