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VMS components

A VMS blends technology and human expertise. The three general technical elements of a VMS are:

  A mixture of shipboard equipment types and communications mediums can be used in a single VMS programme, if the equipment, communications, and resultant information meet the management requirements of the regulatory agency. For fishery management authorities, a VMS programme is not solely a technical solution to monitoring vessels. The additional components of the VMS are largely human, i.e. the policy makers and people who produce the Legal frameworks - VMS programmes , the technicians who install and maintain shipboard equipment, those who operate the communications links and staff the fishery monitoring centre, as well as the enforcement officers, investigators and legal personnel who analyze and respond to the information provided by the VMS. The VMS also includes the vessel operators and other industry contacts responsible for participation in the programme.

The VMS programme must be implemented and operated by people with an understanding of surveillance, computers and communications. In addition to the technical skills, however, the VMS staff must also have a comprehensive knowledge of the regulated fishing industry, including operations and activities. This knowledge is required to reliably interpret the information provided by the VMS, and also to plan and implement changes to the VMS and responses to provided information.



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