Seafarers’ Mental Health is Focus of New Training Programme Offered Free to Mariners Worldwide

KVH Videotel introduced a new training package, “Seafarers Mental Health and Wellbeing,” yesterday during the 5th Annual International Shipowning & Shipmanagement Summit in London, and announced that the package will be available free of charge throughout the industry due to the critical importance of the topic. The programme was produced in association with the International Seafarers Welfare and Assistance Network (ISWAN) and comprises a short video, facilitator notes, and information booklets from ISWAN on mental health issues at sea. To obtain “Seafarers Mental Health and Wellbeing,” please visit videotel.com/seafarerwellbeing.

“Seafarers face unique working conditions which can put them under tremendous stress, with fewer opportunities for relief than they would be likely to find on land,” says Mark Woodhead, KVH senior vice president for EMEA. “This programme not only presents information from industry experts but also lets seafarers themselves tell their own story in interviews and short statements, describing the path to achieving happiness.”

If left unaddressed, seafarer’s stress can result in danger to one’s self by way of lowered morale, increased human error, lifestyle illnesses, decreased productivity, burnout, and mental health issues. “Seafarers Mental Health and Wellbeing” focuses on what seafarers can do to cope with the challenges but also to take advantage of the many opportunities onboard. It underlines the importance of rest, diet, team activities, and maintaining good relationships. Talking to a trusted person onboard ship may help, and there is also help available outside the ship such as the 24/7 multilingual helpline and chat service at SeafarerHelp.org, as well as the work of port-based organisations such as Mission to Seafarers.

ISWAN’s brochures are being distributed as part of this training package, available as downloads from the dedicated KVH Videotel website. In addition, KVH Videotel is providing brief facilitator notes to assist those who will use this programme to run training sessions on vessels.

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KVH Videotel Introduces LNG “Respond Level” Bunkering Training Course

Programme based on “Competency and Assessment Guidelines” from SGMF 

KVH Videotel has launched an LNG bunkering training course to help crew and port or terminal staff enable a safe bunkering process. The programme, based on guidelines from the Society for Gas as a Marine Fuel (SGMF), has been developed in response to the increased use of LNG as a bunker fuel by operators to help them meet the low sulphur targets required by MARPOL Annex VI. SGMF has defined a “Respond Level” of awareness as vitally important: Personnel in close proximity to bunkering operations must understand the hazards associated with LNG bunkering and be trained in how to respond to emergency situations. KVH Videotel’s “LNG Bunkering – Respond Level Training Course” covers:

  • Composition and usage of LNG and potential bunkering methods
  • Hazards and consequences for the individual and ship
  • Relevant procedures for fighting LNG fires
  • Emergency procedures for shipping companies and port authorities

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Videotel Develops First Mobile Platform for Maritime eLearning Programmes

VideotelTM, a KVH company, has launched a new eLearning content delivery platform that will allow users to view its comprehensive range of maritime training programmes on a wide variety of devices, including tablets and mobile phones. This development is a leap forward in maritime training delivery and not only provides a superior user experience for the learner, but also paves the way for seafarers to acquire and test knowledge on any device wherever they are on land and sea.

Videotel is the first maritime training company to develop mobile viewing that harnesses HTML5 responsive-design capabilities, where content can rescale dynamically to any screen size or aspect ratio. Additional features that Videotel has incorporated in its mobile platform include touch navigation, a multi-language capability allowing users to easily switch between languages, and an-ECDIS inspired ‘night mode’ that allows the user to select a darker theme that is easier on the eyes in low-light conditions.

“Over the years, we have continually modified our approach to developing training materials to meet the changing needs of our clients and capitalise on improvements in technology,” says Mark Woodhead, KVH senior vice president for training and content. “This new-generation platform has been created to give users maximum flexibility to view content using whatever device suits them. In today’s busy working environment, having an application with such a responsive design will improve and enhance the user experience.”

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KVH Announces NEWSlink Live Service with Richer Content to Enhance Digital Life at Sea

NEWSlink Live provides 24/7 world news and ‘play-by-play’ live sports reports to a wide variety of seafarers’ own devices

MIDDLETOWN, RI, and LIVERPOOL, UK – November 14, 2016 – KVH Industries, Inc., (Nasdaq: KVHI), is introducing NEWSlinkTM Live, a new digital content service for crew, at the CrewConnect Global conference, in Manila, November 15-16. This next-generation service enables seafarers to receive richer, more dynamic news, sports, finance, and entertainment content on their personal devices, and builds on KVH’s industry-leading NEWSlink service, in use on more than 9,000 vessels worldwide. NEWSlink Live offers crew a powerful digital wireless experience that supports all computers and mobile devices for easy access, while optimising satellite communications bandwidth and costs. NEWSlink Live delivers the existing daily NEWSlink print editions in an enhanced digital format, and also provides free access to a 24/7 world news feed, a unique ‘play-by-play’ live sports feed, and additional supplementary feeds and media services. This enhanced service is enabled by a customised mini-media player, supplied free of charge with every subscription.

“NEWSlink Live creates an improved experience for seafarers and provides a logical ‘next-step’ service to enhance NEWSlink’s existing daily and weekly newspaper service,” says Mark Woodhead, KVH senior vice president for training and content. “NEWSlink Live extends KVH’s commitment to provide the best content services at sea. We can now deliver news in whatever format best suits the vessel and its capabilities – NEWSlink print editions, the richer content of NEWSlink Live, or KVH’s unique IP-MobileCastTM content delivery service, which provides even more with NEWSlink TV.”

As a thought leader in the maritime industry, KVH is the platinum sponsor of the 2016 CrewConnect Global conference, together with maritime training provider VideotelTM, a KVH company. In addition to the NEWSlink Live presentation, there will be a Videotel demo during the conference to showcase a next-generation virtual experience using the latest and most powerful technology of the HTC Vive virtual reality (VR) system. The VR demo will enable users to explore a virtual 360˚ engine room space, and be able to perform a maintenance task with the use of wireless motion tracking controllers. “This virtual reality demonstration is a great example of how Videotel is constantly looking to the future and staying ahead of the industry to provide better services and a better understanding of how crews’ competency and well-being can have a dramatic impact on vessel performance,” says Mr. Woodhead. In addition to the NEWSlink service and Videotel maritime training programmes, KVH offers a wide range of solutions for the maritime industry. These services include mini-VSAT Broadbandsm connectivity, TracPhone® VIP-series satellite communications hardware, the IP-MobileCast content delivery service, and the comprehensive KVH OneCare™ service and support programme – a complete solution that KVH refers to as the Power of OneTM.