Meet our People – A 25 Year Commitment to Safety
Head of Marine Standards, Alastair Martin, or ‘Ali’ to everyone who knows him – is recognised for his passion for safety and commitment to continuous improvement.
Ali recently passed two significant service milestones – this month marks 10-years with Svitzer but also more than 25-years of service with Maersk.
We asked Ali a few questions about his start in his career, through to today.
What do you enjoy most about your job?
I wanted to work in the marine industry from an early age. I’ve managed large ocean-going ships from ashore in the past but working with Svitzer is great as the interface with crew is significantly less distant. In most cases I get on and off our vessels more readily and the opportunity to interact with colleagues in a face-to-face setting is easier and more productive.
How did you get your start with Svitzer?
I have always worked for Maersk, I started as a Cadet and progressed through the ranks to 2nd (First) Engineer sailing on LPG Carriers and Containerships. I saw an internal job advert for a Safety Superintendent, and I took it with a view to just doing it for a couple of years as I thought it would be interesting. But, one thing led to another and I got the opportunity to head up Maersk Tankers HSEQS department in Copenhagen which I did for five years before moving to Svitzer. A former MD who I had sailed with and worked with in the UK reached out to me and said there was an opportunity opening up for a Safety Manager role in Australia. My wife had previously backpacked around Australia and she loved the country so I applied for it and the rest is history.
What’s something surprising about yourself that some people might not know?
I’m a mad, passionate Fremantle Dockers supporter.
What is one highlight you are particularly proud of during your career?
There are many, especially working with such highly talented colleagues ashore and afloat but from a personal perspective it is probably getting the opportunity to chair the marine oil & gas industry safety group – ‘Safer Together’ and its predecessor, ‘MarineSafe’, for three years. To be elected by industry peers and clients to run the group was very special and I felt it enhanced Svitzer’s presence in that area.
What do you enjoy most away from work?
Spending time with my wife Mags and our 6-year-old son Xander. I am away from home a lot with work, so I dedicate as much time as possible to them when I am back from travels.