Navigating stormy waters calmly - and with determination
As a northern European carrier, Finnlines is used to navigating both clement and stormy weather. The worldwide storm that has picked up in 2020 will not blow us off course; we shall adapt in order to keep supplying the services required on the trade routes plied by our vessels. Finnlines intends to remain a pillar of stability in turbulent times.
As part of Northern Europe's logistics industry, Finnlines is not just a transporter of freight and people. It has in recent weeks become evident that carriers such as ours provide a lifeline for both the private and the public sector.
Supermarkets, hospitals and pharmacies rely on the produce we ship. Without vessels and their supporting logistics operations consumption would fall and some societies would struggle to keep functioning. Europe’s periphery is particularly reliant on sustained maritime links.
With few cruise ships now operating, and airline frequency also severely hit, mixed passenger-freight roll-on roll-off services have in many cases become even more essential. Ro-ro vessels are one of the most adaptable ships types. There are no single-accommodation cabins on aircraft; and there are no trucks on cruise lines. Unlike container vessels, ro-ro ships are not dependent on shore cranes.
"We can guarantee services
while providing maximum safety standards
and complying to the letter
with the requirements authorities set us."
The situation changes almost daily, but it is our intention to keep serving our markets while accommodating government requirements as they are issued.
Safety has always been and will always remain our top priority. In order to prevent contagion and protect crew and passengers, we have adapted our safety procedures. Finnlines drivers will be provided with individual cabins, many of which are spacious. Crews have already been instructed to increase cleaning and disinfection, in particular door handles, handrails, elevator knobs, remote controls and table tops. They have also been drilled on how to handle sick passengers.
We are in constant touch with authorities in these exceptional times regarding the latest safety measures. Where possible we will continue to move passengers, including those in need of repatriation, as well as drivers accompanying freight.
The mixed nature of the Finnlines fleet gives us flexibility and adaptability. We can guarantee services while providing maximum safety standards and complying to the letter with the requirements authorities set us.
While the focus of the media is likely to remain on the health crisis and the economic turmoil that has come in its wake, it is also important to keep focusing on the long term.
The challenges posed by pollution and climate change cannot be overcome without continued improvements to ship technology and fuel. Thanks to significant investment in environmentally friendly ships, Finnlines will be playing a real part in the reduction of pollution levels in Baltic and North Sea. The significant green newbuilding investment will also give Finnlines the flexibility to remove some of the older existing vessels from the fleet in order to let new units enter, improving the green footprint of the Company. This is a responsible, green policy which all operators should aim for.
We are determined to not only overcome this crisis, but thrive, along with our customers, crews and employees, in the decades to come.
Emanuele Grimaldi, CEO