How do Safety Management Systems Work?

Our findings suggest that flag
state is not the most important factor affecting maritime
safety outcomes. However, ships flying newer FOCs are
associated with worse safety outcomes. Of six risk factors
investigated, communication stands out as a potential
safety risk on FOC vessels. These vessels generally
have multinational crews, which may be more likely to
experience unsafe situations because of language
difficulties, and for whom differences in national safety
culture could further confound communication problems.
Despite this, FOC vessels may perform better than
nationally flagged vessels on other factors influencing
safety. END QUOTE

Basis below study ( and there are many studies on the issue of flag state performance/safety standards ) I woud posit it is a bit risky to say " Flag state has exactly zero to do how well a company runs their fleet " but I may be wrong of course.

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