Report of a Workshop to Identify and Assess Technologies to Reduce Ship Strikes of Large Whales
NOAA Technical Memorandum NMFS-OPR-42
Workshop Date: 8-10 July 2008
Vessel collisions (or “ship strikes”) are a threat to a number of marine vertebrate species world wide, particularly endangered large whale species. Various modifications to vessel and water craft operations have been used in an attempt to reduce the threat of ship strikes. Seeking ways to reduce the magnitude of the threat through technological solutions has been proposed by maritime industries, resource managers, and government agencies alike. Use of remote sensing technologies may provide means to reduce ship strikes while simultaneously allowing certain maritime commerce and other activities to proceed with limited biological and economic impact. However, low whale detection rates and constraints on the effective range of some devices to provide ample warning and response times for mariners may limit their utility in this context. In addition, development, installation, maintenance, and/or operation may be cost prohibitive in some cases.