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INTERSCHALT VDRs on all Holland America Line cruise ships

INTERSCHALT maritime systems reports that Holland America Line is retrofitting its entire fleet of 15 cruise ships with its VDR G4 and its BLUETRACKER software, which automates data flow from vessel to shore.

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The installation began in Q2/2012 and will be completed in Q2/2014.

VDR G4's online monitor, ‘Replayer’, provides a picture of the ship's position in real time on a chart and can transfer this playback to a notebook or a smartphone so that the captain can access it, even from his cabin. Important information about radars, alarms, the positioning on the electronic chart, machine data from the conning display and helm data is available in real time.

With BLUETRACKER, the information is automatically transferred via satellite communication. In case of emergency, the crew no longer has to worry about transmitting data, which is sent automatically, via e-mail, SMS or to smartphones. This way, the onshore team can provide assistance based on this data.

The VDR G4 also stores the data, and INTERSCHALT says that even false alarms are recorded to provide an accurate overall view of events.

Holland America Line, which has a control centre in Seattle, operates a fleet of vessels belonging to different classes. The smallest ship carries 835 guests while the largest ship carries 2,104. The number of fire doors onboard ranges from 300 to 2,000 per vessel. Using the online monitor, the captain can see at a glance whether the watertight doors are all properly closed or, in the event that they aren't, which locations need to be re-checked.

"We have a great responsibility to safeguard the well-being of people and oceans we sail upon,” said Steve Nevey, nautical superintendent, Technical Operations at Holland America Line.

"We wanted to get the INTERSCHALT VDRs onboard our ships as quickly as possible as we were impressed with the quality of the device and the quality and presentation of data. The automated processes contribute to improving safety and quality. Our ERC (Emergency Response Centre) in Seattle now receives more standardised data for processing and receives it much more quickly."

"We are very pleased with the project's progress. As a premium cruise operator there are of course restrictions on our ships with regard to when and where technicians can go. As a result, we had to stick to a precise schedule as some work can only be carried out in a dry-dock. The quality of INTERSCHALT's service has really impressed us."

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