Statement on Tragedy in Lebanon
We at Ocean Technologies Group wish to express our deepest sympathies and condolences to the individuals and their families affected by the explosions at the Port of Beirut in Lebanon on the 4th of August, 2020. Initial reports have attributed the explosion to large quantities of ammonium nitrate stored at the port without the appropriate safety measures in place to prevent such incidents. There have already been confirmed losses of life, particularly in the vicinity of the port, and our hearts go out to those dealing with this disaster and its aftermath.
This, in the same vein as other major global and maritime tragedies, is a learning moment for us – and it is important that we as an industry work together to ensure that such a tragedy never occurs again. We firmly believe that even a single life lost is one too many.
What is particularly unfortunate in this instance is the fact that we have had similar tragedies before in general settings as well as some specific to maritime (the Galveston and Tianjin explosions). As a result, there are already IMO regulations and appropriate training resources to help safeguard port workers and seafarers against such catastrophes – so this should have been a wholly preventable tragedy.
We hope that the authorities are able to investigate this incident fully, take the appropriate measures to implement the relevant regulations and ensure that such incidents never take place again so that the people of Beirut, particularly those working at the port, can rest assured of their ongoing safety.
Manish Singh, Chief Executive Officer, Ocean Technologies Group