Company That Operated and Staffed Ship That Destroyed Baltimore Bridge was Heavily Focused on DEI

Francis Scott Key Bridge Accident

The company in charge of operating and staffing the doomed vessel that destroyed the Francis Scott Key Bridge in a major crash earlier this week was heavily focused on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) initiatives.

The Singapore-based Synergy Marine Group managed the Dali, the 948-foot vessel.

Ship managers like Synergy operate and staff vessels like the Dali on behalf of the ship’s owners, who in this case was Grace Ocean Private, Ltd., another Singapore-based company.

Synergy’s website brags about its commitment to DEI initiatives.

“As an organization aspiring to excellence, issues related to diversity are a high priority at Synergy. We realize that the benefits of diversity are best achieved by fostering greater inclusion and belonging,” the site says. “We will continue to attract, hire, and retain a diverse workforce because that is a key source of good ideas, and talented applicants will be drawn to work with us. But hiring for diversity alone is not enough. We want to ensure that our employees can bring their full selves to work – that they can belong in the fullest sense to the community inside the organization.”

The company’s founder and executive chairman is Capt. Rajesh Unni, who also appears to have a deep focus on diversity.

His biography on Synergy’s website says:

The Founder and Executive Chairman of Synergy Marine Group, Capt. Unni’s illustrious maritime career spans more than 30 years. Renowned for his innovative and forward-thinking leadership on sustainability, diversity and technology, and his ability to forge thought and technical partnerships with like-minded companies.

Dutch titan Maersk chartered the Dali itself. Charterers purchase cargo space on ships to move their goods.

Maersk is also focused on DEI initiatives.

It employs a Chief DEI Officer, Ingrid Uppelschoten Snelderwaard

Describing its approach to DEI, Maersk says the following:

Diversity is part of our business and essential to our future success. Being able to attract and retain diverse talent globally and from across different industries is key to delivering on our strategy.

Our ESG strategy elevates diversity and inclusion as a priority, and we have clear ambitions to be best in class as we know that diversity, equity & inclusion is a lever to our success internally and externally.

Our customers are selecting their partners based on the creation of an inclusive and welcoming environment while our products and services offered require resonating with diverse backgrounds and experiences.

Being able to work with diverse suppliers fosters a higher degree of innovation and contributes to the economic development of underrepresented communities, while also enhancing the overall resilience and competitiveness of our customers’ supply chain.

Two people died when the Francis Scott Key Bridge collapsed in the early morning on Tuesday. Six people working on the bridge at the time of the crash, likely hurled into the Patapsco River, remain missing and are presumed dead.

“We extend our deepest sympathies to the families of the two people lost following the incident in the Baltimore Harbor on March 26,” Synergy said in a press release. “We remain hopeful that continued efforts will lead to the recovery of the workers who remain missing. One of the vessel’s crew members who was injured returned to the vessel on Wednesday after being treated.”

The company also says it deeply regrets the economic damage the crash will cause in the Baltimore area and worldwide.

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Pete D’Abrosca is a reporter at The Tennessee Star and The Star News Network. Follow Pete on Twitter.
Photo “Francis Scott Key Bridge Accident” by Harford County Md Fire & EMS PIO Media Page. 





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