It is quite important to know that if you are someone who manages a Portishead port facility (or, indeed,any port facility in the UK) including anchorages, waiting berths, or approaches from seaward, under the 2004 Ship and Port Facility (Security) Regulations you must appoint a specially designated Port Facility Security Officer (PFSO).
PFSO Training Programs
Although a single PFSO can cover more than one port facility, all PFSO’s must complete an approved training course by the Maritime and Transport Security (MTS) division, formerly known as TRANSEC, at the Department for Transport(DfT).
To make matters slightly more involved, there are a handful of training companies which offer PFSO training courses to ports and port facilities that have not been approved by MTS. However, MTS does not recognise approval or accreditation by any non-approved training provider.
Make sure you know which companies are approved, and which are not. If you have recently appointed a PFSO who has completed a course from an unapproved training company, they may need to attend further courses from an approved vendor.
PFSO Training for Security Staff
As a port security manager, think about providing the rest of your security Portishead staff with training resources from the DfT. While not strictly necessary, this can be a great way to instill in all of your employees proficient maritime security skills.
The DfT offers several educational films to all port operators in the UK. As a port operator, you can order any of the following training films and learning packages free of charge:
- Safe Harbours – an introduction to port security suitable for all port staff.
- Maritime Freight Security – material suitable for security staff working in passenger (PAX) or container roll-on roll-off (CRR) port facilities.
- Security: Everybody’s Business – material designed to assist with overall port security from Bristol security to Chepstow to Portishead security.
Other training films, not specifically related to the maritime setting, but which cover other DfT safety measures may also be requested freely to port operators.
In addition to the above training films, the DfT also offers several hard copy training materials for maritime security including a set of voluntary training modules regarding all maritime security instructions issued by the DfT, and a drills and exercise guidance document that seeks to act as a memory aid to those involved in organising maritime security exercises and the like. These safety instructions and training materials are extremely valuable.