The Mediterranean is considered to be at a high risk of major spills from large cargo ships and tankers. However, there is a lack of contingency plans in such cases. The shipping traffic in the Aegean Sea between Greece and Turkey is largely unmonitored and considered to be at even higher risk. Over 75% of all Mediterranean maritime accidents have been recorded in this region. Research in this field focuses on risk assessment and analysis, as well as development of management and prevention measures.
Major shipping accidents which occurred in the previous years, even in key touristic areas of the Greek seas, demonstrate the inefficiency of prevention and management protocols related to maritime accidents. Two characteristic examples include the accident of the cruiser ship Sea Diamond, which sank off the coast of Santorini Island in 2007, as well as the accident of the Turkish cargo ship Yusef Cepnioglu, which sank off the coast of Mykonos Island in 2014. Unfortunately, despite the increasing shipping traffic there are no national monitoring policies and ships do not follow any established routes.
Archipelagos cooperates with expert IT scientists in order to develop an efficient monitoring and risk assessment protocol for the Aegean Sea region. Reducing the possibility of shipping accidents should be a major priority, as they threaten the Greek seas with irreversible ecological and socio-economic destruction.