NTSB Cruise Ship Safety and Oversight Forum Now Under Way in D.C. (VIDEO)

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March 25 and 26, the U.S. National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is holding a public hearing forum in Washington, D.C., on cruise ship safety and operations.

Entitled “Cruise Ships: Examining Safety, Operations and Oversight,” the forum began at 9 a.m. Tuesday. Agents may pull up the agenda and other information here: www.ntsb.gov/cruiseshipforum.

The NTSB plans to review the regulatory framework, ship design and fire protection, operations and corporate oversight of cruise ships. It will also explore some recent high-profile incidents.

The forum's goal is to encourage dialogue among industry stakeholders, regulators, and the general public to better understand cruise ship safety and oversight. Participants will include regulators such as the U.S. Coast Guard, vessel owners and operators, researchers and industry groups.

The NTSB has called for enhancing passenger vessel safety and the issue is currently on the board's “most wanted” list of transportation safety priorities. A link to that list is here: www.ntsb.gov/safety/mwl2_2014.html.

The forum is being held in the NTSB Board Room and Conference Center, located at 429 L'Enfant Plaza, S.W., Washington, D.C. It’s free and open to the public. No registration is necessary.

Agents who are unable to attend but would like to view the Web cast, may go to www.ntsb.gov. Webcasts are available to view up to three months from the time of the meeting. It’s expected the safety forum will be up online by the end of the event day for public viewing.

Can’t wait? Then visit the forum as it unfolds "live" via this video stream: http://stream.capitolconnection.org/capcon/ntsb/ntsb.htm