IALA is a not for profit making international technical association. Established in 1957, it gathers together marine aids to navigation authorities, manufacturers and consultants from all parts of the world and offers them the opportunity to compare their experiences and achievements.
IALA is encouraging its members to work together in a common effort to harmonize aids to navigation worldwide and to ensure that the movements of vessels are safe, expeditious and cost effective and at the same time protect the environment.
Taking into account the needs of mariners, developments in techology and the requirements and constraints of aids to navigation authorities, a number of technical committees have been established bringing together experts from around the World.
The work of the committees is aimed at developing common standards through publication of IALA Recommendations and Guidelines.
This work ensures that mariners have aids to navigation which will meet their needs both now and in the future. IALA is therefore contributing to the reduction of marine accidents and to the increasing safety of life and property at sea, while protecting the marine environment.
IALA also encourages cooperation between nations to assist developing nations in establishing aids to navigation networks that are appropriate to the degree of risk for the waterway concerned.
The purpose of IALA is to ensure that seafarers are provided with effective and harmonised marine Aids to Navigation services worldwide to assist in safe navigation of shipping and protection of the environment.
To achieve this aim the Association:
the services provided for shipping by Aids to Navigation and Vessel Traffic Service Authorities; the international regulations relating to the operating practices and equipment carriage requirements of shipping; and, new and developing technologies that could improve the effectiveness of aids to navigation services or reduce the cost of providing the service without degrading its effectiveness.
detailed information to Authorities in Handbooks, such as the NAVGUIDE and VTS Manual, which are regularly reviewed and updated at intervals of four years.
Develops and publishes:
methods of introducing new and improved risk management techniques to assist in determining the optimum arrangement of aids to navigation in waterways.
The Association recognises that the maritime industry is going through a stage of rapid technological development and change, not only in respect of electronics, but also, and perhaps more crucially, in the design and operations of ships.Very fast ships are now being built and to provide adequate aids to navigation for them will entail detailed studies and risk assessments being undertaken.
The crews of ships are being reduced and this emphasises the need to take account during the design of aids to navigation of the manner in which data obtained from the aids is integrated with other information on ships. It is envisaged that to reduce pollution of the marine environment and unlawful maritime activities, regional VTS systems will be developed and, in turn, these may be amalgamated into a global system.
IALA is investigating possible solutions to these problems so that Aids to Navigation Authorities will have information on methods available to them for addressing these matters when the circumstances occur.