How long have you been associated with IUMI?
I have been involved with IUMI since 2008 when I attended my first conference in Vancouver. One year later I became a member of the Loss Prevention Committee and have been ever since.
What is your IUMI role today and what does it involve?
I am Vice-Chair of the Loss Prevention Committee and with this position there is a long list of responsibilities. I help to organise speakers for the conference and work with the committee to develop and bring to light issues of interest. For example, we have been very active in informing and pushing for change in the industry about the increasingly concerning issue of fires on container vessels. We published a position paper in 2017 highlighting this issue and suggested possible solutions in collaboration with GDV. I have spoken at various conferences on this topic, including recent IMCC and Gard conference in Arendal.
The IUMI Loss Prevention Committee also looks at various other issues, some of which are highlighted on the IUMI website, including developing a definition for fit-for-purpose packaging for the transport of goods, developing and translating an e-learning programme on humidity management during the transport of goods, reworking the CTU code, the lashing and securing of project cargo, to name a few.
Seafaring/shipping is an international industry and national rules are often not helpful. We need to apply international rules if our industry is to operate smoothly.
And what is your day job?
I am a Loss Prevention Manager at GDV, the German Insurance Association, for the past 25 years. At GDV we look at similar issues mentioned above and also look at controls on the German Autobahn highways together with the police as cargo theft and prevention in parking areas is a serious issue in Germany.
GDV also produces handbooks on various subjects such as lashing and securing, and I also organise and speak at international conferences on key topics.
What benefits do you get from being associated with IUMI?
Transport is international, and IUMI provides a professional platform and voice for the marine insurance industry. Thanks to IUMI’s position at the IMO and having a seat there we are fortunate to be able to contribute and work towards improving the safety standards of the maritime industry.
As an association we can look at and deal with a wider range of loss prevention issues, drawing on the expertise of our members. Polar shipping, sulphur free bunker oil, lashing and securing of project cargo are some of these issues - and this is to the benefit of the maritime industry as a whole.
If you could change anything at IUMI what would it be?
I would increase IUMI’s capacity by one or two more people immediately. The IUMI Secretariat - Lars, Hendrike and Corinna - do a wonderful job, sometimes that of more people, but they cannot be everywhere at the same time and there are many issues that we could be helping with.
In the last six to seven years IUMI has grown from strength to strength and the IUMI team has given us a taste for this high-quality service and I would like to see it continue and grow.
How did you reach your current position in marine insurance?
My career started at sea in 1978 as a deck boy and then 12 years later I had my Master Mariner’s license. Two years later I joined GDV as a Loss Prevention Manager. At the time I didn’t know what I know now about loss prevention and the insurance industry, but after 25 years I have worked with some great people and learnt a lot.
And what do you do away from the office?
I enjoy gardening, it is where I relax. There are lots of different things to do in the garden such as clipping wood, planting flowers and cutting the lawn, and here I get a few hours to myself and where I find my Zen.