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The safety of shipping and other maritime activities has traditionally been treated by what is called the prescriptive approach, whereby the authorities draw up the rules and regulations and the users obey them without question. This approach is most applicable to engineering issues but safety involvers many other factors. Ship safety very much involves management and operations, underpinned by human factors such as attitude and behaviour. To achieve high standards, many industries, such as chemical and offshore, have adopted the ""goal-setting approach"" which is based on the safety case concept. This text explains the basic principles and elements of the safety case concept, using practical examples to illustrate their application. It also shows how these safety elements relate to the International Safety Management Code (ISM Code) and Formal Safety Application (FSA).