Category Archives: Maritime

Fishermen’s Safety Fair, Blessing of the Fleet

Fishermen’s safety is a topic of discussion throughout the country. From captivating tv series to memorial services and everything in between, we all feel a connection to those brave enough to work at sea.

The process of ensuring safety for fishermen begins before the boats leave the dock, with emergency plans and equipment in place. The blessing of the fleet is a nod to the fact that even the best plans and safety equipment are not always good enough to save a life on their own.

Blessing of the Fleet

This year in Seattle the annual Blessing of the Fleet ceremony will be held at 2:00 p.m. on Sunday, March 8th at Fishermen’s Terminal.  Hosted by Ballard First Lutheran Church, family, friends and guests are encouraged to join the ceremony at the Central Plaza at Fishermen’s Terminal.

Fishermen’s Safety Fair

Each year Seattle Fishermen’s Memorial hosts a Fishermen’s Safety Fair to teach fishermen practical skills to save their boats and their lives. This year’s event will be held 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Thursday, June 4. The event will be held at Fishermen’s Terminal at Dock 9. For more information please contact: Safety@seattlefishermensmemorial.org.

Seattle Fishermen’s Memorial believes that a significant number of lives can be saved if more fishermen are trained and understand: vessel stability, shipboard fire-fighting, first aid / CPR, and drill instructor certification. In addition, Seattle Fishermen’s Memorial supports the concept of onboard training and vessel emergency team training.

As part of its commitment to promote safer vessels, the Seattle Fishermen’s Memorial Board is making funds available to Washington-based commercial fishing vessel owners and their crew members, and fishermen who are Washington residents. This ongoing program started August 1st, 1995. See their website for a complete list of safety training opportunities.

Read our prior post: PORT 101 TOUR, SHIP CANAL for a glimpse of a behind-the-scenes tour of Seattle’s Fishermen’s Terminal, the Ship Canal, and the Ballard Locks.

Ports of Seattle and Tacoma Seek Technology Growth

Planned technology growth at the Port of Seattle, including Elliott Bay and Fisherman’s Terminal facilities, as well as the Port of Tacoma, will improve services for cruise ships, cargo ships and shipping vessels. Several projects are underway, including expansion of capacity for larger cargo vessels in Tacoma, additional cruise ship capacity in Seattle, support for larger fishing vessels in Seattle, as well as dock upgrades and increased light-industrial space for maritime uses at Fisherman’s Terminal.

In-Depth Article Describes Technology Growth Plans

WorkBoat’s Kirk Moore has written an extensive article based on interviews with port planners, offering insight into the many-faceted plans for technology growth in our area. Read his full article, excerpted below, here. It’s a good read. Mr. Moore describes the Ports’ ideas for innovation:

Port planners are looking for ways to synthesize that tech strength with the city’s legacy maritime industries. One step is a “maritime innovation center” to be co-located with the new north end improvements, with $10.55 million in funding including $5 million from the state of Washington.

The center will be a home for the “blue tech sector,” a space to support emerging maritime technology and workforce development. The idea is modeled on centers in Iceland and the Netherlands, including Port XL, a “maritime accelerator” in Rotterdam. There are 60 different tech accelerator programs in Seattle. Not one of them is focused on maritime.

Maritime Innovation Center Could Transform Fisherman’s Terminal

The Port of Seattle’s post about the proposed Maritime Innovation Center is sparse, but the concept of a facility such as this at Fisherman’s Terminal is quite interesting. It could spark a revitalization of the surrounding area, supporting businesses and drawing those with interest in maritime trades and activities.

A similar program has been in place in Port Townsend with the Northwest Maritime Center. It has become an anchor to the revitalized waterfront downtown neighborhood. It also has become a hub for learning and sharing traditional boat-centric skills, from sailing to boat building.

The Port of Seattle is in the second year of a five-year investment plan designed to make our region a competitive maritime hub. The ideas for technology growth are a big component in these plans.