Incident Replay and Analysis

Incident Replay and Analysis
Photo credit: Ste Calland
Animated reconstruction of an incident using the recorded data can be a very effective way of showing the incident to others

Data Recovery

The current VDR/S-VDR specification only requires that data is stored for a minimum of 12 hours before it is overwritten. As a result, unless some action has been taken to save or download the data within 12 hours of an incident, the data will often have been deleted/overwritten before it can be downloaded.

However, if you’ve got the original digital storage media from a casualty, such as the Hard Disk or Compact Flash Memory from a Voyage Data Recorder, but critical data has been overwritten/deleted, our experts can inspect and image the storage medium and then recover as much data as is possible. Because we specialise in Marine/VDR data analysis, we have considerable experience of the data content and formats used across the wide range of different VDR systems. This makes our data recovery process most efficient.

Audio Extraction and Enhancement

The replay and analysis of audio from VDR recordings can be critical in understanding a bridge team’s communications preceding and during an incident. Unfortunately, all too often the audio quality is very poor, with either unwanted electrical or ambient noise.

If the VDR audio is very noisy, we can use advanced Digital Signal Processing techniques to remove unwanted noise from the recordings, enhancing the quality of the audio in order to make the speech content easier to understand.

Also if you need the bridge audio or VHF radio communications translated or transcribed, we can extract the audio from the VDR data, and supply it in a standard file format that can then be easily used on any PC.

Animated Reconstructions

An animated reconstruction of an incident using the recorded data can be a very effective way of showing the incident to others. The reconstruction can for example be used for investigation, litigation, or training purposes.

Avenca will typically use our Marine Accident Data Analysis Suite (MADAS) software to replay/animate your incident data.

Animations normally primarily use VDR data to show scaled icons of the ship(s) involved on Nautical charts, synchronised with selected bridge audio/radio channels (with subtitles if required), and/or radar/AIS and NMEA data(as available). Data from different sources such as AIS, VTS or CCTV can also be included. Additional annotation can also be superimposed on the chart (so for example include an indication of features which were not present when the chart was surveyed).

Once you’re happy with the animated reconstruction, we’ll supply a video that you can then replay on any PC, when and wherever required.

More Advanced Analysis

In some cases in order to establish what actually happened in an incident, it may be necessary to do some additional or more advanced analysis. For example, there is a wide range of other data available in VDR data files, such as door and alarm information, which it may be difficult to access using the manufacturer’s replay software. We can extract the data and analyse it for you. To provide you, for example, with information on when specific doors were open, or when alarms sounded and were acknowledged.