September 2022 – August 2025
The Fire Safety Engineering Group are delighted to announce that, from September 2022, we are associate partners in a major EU Horizon project to investigate and develop prevention, mitigation and management measures for airborne disease control on passenger ships and ferries.
With vast experience, in-depth knowledge and established expertise in infectious disease prevention and control on passenger ships, HEALTHY SAILING consortium presents a comprehensive approach introducing innovative, multi-layered, risk and evidence-based, cost-effective tested measures for infectious diseases prevention, mitigation and management (PMM) differentiated for large ferries, cruise ships and expedition vessels. This approach covers: a) preparedness and response to known infectious diseases frequently occurring on passenger ships, diseases that have never occurred but for which preparedness is essential, diseases of unknown aetiology to ensure preparedness for future emerging pathogens/pandemics; b) the entire passenger/crew journey travelling from home to ship and returning, on-board, during shore-side visits; c) ship-board operations, shore-side company operations, port destinations and communities; d) a global perspective of project outputs towards communities and passenger shipping industry. Epidemiological studies, risk assessment, modelling for disease spread and aerosol/droplet dispersion and setting disease thresholds/alert levels will develop a scientific evidence-base and support production of evidence-informed guidelines on COVID-19 for ships/ports, passengers/crew vaccination, ventilation systems and expedition vessels’ medical operation needs. Development/testing of ship-specific syndromic surveillance, AI systems, decision support tools will contribute to early health threat detection on-board, risk-based proportionate responses, and healthy on-board environments. Toolkits for blended learning with hands-on training and technology induced behaviour change will further knowledge, awareness and compliance of all stakeholders. An integrated e-pass based on one-ID concept and toolkit predicting port response capacities will address port operation and community needs. A scientific international panel will promote a harmonized global approach. .
|Project Objectives||The general (conceptual) objective of HEALTHY
SAILING is to contribute to improve quality of passenger shipping
services brought to society, facilitating recovery from COVID-19
pandemic, making the passenger shipping sector, safer, more resilient,
competitive and efficient by producing evidence for infection control,
validated prevention, mitigation, management measures and training to
be used for policy making and ship operations, whose implementation
will reduce public health incidents on-board large passenger ships and
Healthy Sailing project is partnering with major cruise operators to ensure safety in the most challenging conditions.
To establish a comprehensive scientific basis concerning the specific mechanisms facilitating the on-board spread of infection and the effectiveness of different mitigation methods, WP3 will conduct literature reviews and epidemiological studies, risk assessment analysis, mathematical modelling for infectious diseases spread prediction, and provide a validated modelling capability to predict the dispersion of respiratory droplets and aerosols within the ventilated environment of a passenger ship to be used for PMM strategies. This comprehensive scientific basis will be publicly available through WP2 and 7 and measures will be in place to facilitate the take-up of project outputs as a function of ship type, size, type of cruise and cruise destination. The model will investigate areas of particular concern and challenges for infection transmission risk due to duration or nature of the activities:
To develop, test and validate measures for early threat detection and for effective PMM measures that can reduce the rapid spread of diseases and the infection risks on-board large passenger ships, using syndromic surveillance for infectious diseases, innovative technologies including Artificial Intelligence (AI) and machine learning which are interoperable with legal, safety, security, environmental and other ship operational aspects and in the context of SSH aspects. PMM measures will be addressed (WP3,4,5,6).
To increase knowledge and awareness among crew, other staff and passengers by conducting interventional study to improve compliance with health measures including hand hygiene practices, considering and addressing cultural, social, behavioural aspects and implementing risk communication principles accordingly, as part of the work of WP7, ensuring that crew and passengers are dully trained. The project aims to deliver the following outputs:
|Methodology||To achieve its objectives, HEALTHY SAILING has
adopted an evidence-based methodological approach consisting of four
components: expert opinion (across all WPs), evidence accumulation
(WP3), development of PMM measures (WP4, WP5, WP6, WP7) and finally,
integration of project outputs (WP 2, WP 3, WP6, WP7).
The four components of the Healthy Sailing Project:
|Project Workplan||Work Package 1: Lead Partner: UTH
Project technical and scientific coordination
WP1 will coordinate the activities across all work packages of HEALTHY SAILING and integrate legal aspects.
a) To manage the project by ensuring it is implemented as planned, demonstrating high-quality scientific leadership across the consortium and at global level, and providing sound financial management.
b) To cooperate and coordinate with “healthy ship design”, EU HEALTHY GATEWAYS and other action. FSEG’s role in this Work Package is to help coordinate the WP3 experimental trials and modelling, which require access to suitable ships for the trial dispersion studies and modelling that will form part of the central evidence base for the whole project.
Work Package 2: Lead Partner: SHIPSAN
Exploitation, dissemination and communication
WP2 will be responsible for the design and implementation of the dissemination, exploitation and communication.
a) To make the knowledge produced publicly available about infection spread mechanisms and measures.
b) To facilitate take-up of project outputs in function of ship type, size, type of cruise and cruise destination.
Work Package 3: Lead Partner: UoG
Evidence accumulation, overall assessment and integration
WP3 will provide the foundations for the information needed to develop the project outputs including software, training, experimental studies, guidelines, modelling and will develop the methods and conduct risk assessment and analysis of the infection chain for the infectious diseases that are relevant to large passenger ships from the perspective of ship operation and behaviour and other human factors. WP3 includes the activities for validation of the outputs produced through WP 4, 5, 6 and 7.
a) To establish an evidence base concerning the specific mechanisms facilitating the on-board spread of infection and the effectiveness of different mitigation methods.
b) To perform pilot-runs and demonstrations to create evidence for the effectiveness, applicability and interoperability of the introduced solutions for PMM measures.
c) To integrate evidence produced into project outputs including guidelines. FSEG leads this core modelling and experimental work package (WP) to generate a scientific evidence base concerning infection risk for the Healthy Sailing project. UOG will utilise the SMARTFIRE CFD modelling environment and the dynamic aerosol dispersion modelling framework to explore the impact of the dispersion of airborne respiratory pathogens within ventilated spaces in cruise ship environments. This is based on FSEG’s research and modelling framework development investigating Covid-19 aerosol dispersion and Infection Risk analysis in buildings, aircraft and trains:
FSEG will also explore the effectiveness of different mitigation methods to reduce the risk of infection.
Together with the project’s experimental trials, conducted by University of Surrey (UOS), to generate data to validate the modelling, FSEG will model long range and extended duration interactions in shipboard ventilated spaces, whilst our other WP partner Finnish research laboratory VTT, will model short range droplet interactions, to assess the Infection Risks from directly inhaled near-field droplets and surfaces contamination with fomites. These investigations will create a body of evidence helping to define the effectiveness, applicability and interoperability of introduced solutions for Prevention, Mitigation and Management (PMM) measures and allow the integration of these findings into project outputs, guidelines and training.
Work Package 4: Lead Partner: UTH
Prevention, mitigation and management measures for travellers
WP4 will incorporate tasks for PMM measures in relation to humans for infectious diseases on passenger ships, with emphasis on COVID-19.
a) To develop solutions for improving the prevention, mitigation and management of on-board disease and illness in relation to travellers including passengers and crew members.
b) To prevent communicable infections (Covid-19, influenza, norovirus) rapid spread amongst passengers and crew on large passenger ships, in particular on cruise ships.
c) To achieve early health threat detection systematically on-board passenger ships by developing an integrated e-surveillance system (E-SS) performing real-time syndromic, laboratory and environmental health surveillance.
d) To support decision making for implementing PMM response measures on-board by producing an Artificial Intelligence (AI) Intelligence Immune System (IIS) for health measures decision making.
Work Package 5: Lead Partner: INP
Prevention, mitigation and management measures in the ship environment
WP5 will include tasks for PMM measures relevant to the ship environment including activities for measures of cleaning, disinfection, water safety.
a) To develop solutions to prevent, mitigate and manage the rapid spread of infectious agents in the ship environment that can cause on-board disease.
b) To contribute to early detection of infectious agents by using reliable laboratory testing methods.
c) To contribute to the prevention of waterborne diseases including Legionnaires’ disease by producing an artificial intelligence water safety plan.
Work Package 6: Lead Partner: UKE
Prevention, mitigation, management measures for shore side operations & communities
WP6 will focus on PMM measures applicable to ports such as crowd control and will produce best practices for interoperability with the ship plans and activities for international cooperation for communities.
a) To control spread of communicable infections (Covid-19, influenza, norovirus) beyond the vessel in ports and port communities.
b) To develop and demonstrate solutions for improving the prevention, mitigation and management of on-board disease and illness.
Work Package 7: Lead Partner: USN
Education, awareness and risk communication
WP7 will focus on increasing knowledge and awareness among crew, passengers and staff, while placing HEALTHY SAILING outputs in an SSH context.
a) To prevent and control infectious diseases spread through contaminated hands by developing for a toolkit for technology-induced behavioural change in hand hygiene incorporating training.
b) To increase knowledge and awareness among crew, other staff and passengers by providing blended learning training toolkit enriched with hands-on training (HOT).
c) To place project outputs in SSH context.
Figure showing the linkages between the Healthy Sailing Work Packages:
|Further Information||Prof. Ed Galea
Fire Safety Engineering Group
University of Greenwich
Greenwich Maritime Campus
Old Royal Naval College
Queen Mary Building
Greenwich SE10 9LS
Tel: +44 (020) 8331 8730
The Healthy Sailing project is funded by the European Union’s HORIZON 2020 Framework Programme for Research and Innovation.
EU Website: https://cordis.europa.eu/project/id/101069764
See FSEG publications: #362, #358, #355