COAST GUARD NEW LONDON CT NEW LONDON United States
Maritime Safety Information MSI is data and information delivered from shore authorities to mariners at sea to improve safety and efficiency of navigation. MSI has a very specific international definition as promulgated by the International Maritime Organization IMO. MSI consists of navigational warnings, meteorological information, and urgent safety-related information broadcast to ships. Presently, MSI is disseminated in a text-based message via Navigation Text NAVTEX, SafetyNET, and High Frequency HF Narrowband Direct Printing NBDP. Global Maritime Distress and Safety System GMDSS modernization includes several new communications systems for possible inclusion in the modernized GMDSS and the distribution of MSI VHF Data Exchange System VDES, Iridium Enhanced Group Calling EGC Service, and Navigation Data NAVDAT. In addition, the International Hydrographic Organization IHO S-100 series of standards is being developed as a flexible hydrographic data standard to support imagery, gridded data and time-varying data. The ongoing GMDSS modernization plan will result in significant changes in the way that MSI is delivered and in the type of information that can be delivered by 2024. The USCG will need to stay abreast of these developments over the next few years to ensure that it is ready for modernization. This report provides a synopsis of the current state of MSI and the existing distribution mechanisms in Section 2. Section 3 gives an overview of the various agencies involved with MSI. A discussion of the new technologies being pursued as part of the GMDSS modernization effort is in Section 4 and some recommendations for action by USCG are in Section 5.