Bulker operators and owners have joined forces with the Rio Tinto, Cargill and BHP-owned Rightship to establish new rules to drive up safety standards in the sector.

The new Dry Bulk Management Standard (DBMS) project is being led by risk manager RightShip, inspired to some extent by the Oil Companies International Marine Forum (OCIMF) which manages benchmarks for the tanker and offshore industry.

Big names such as Victor Restis' Enterprises Shipping & Trading and fellow Greek owner Neda Maritime Agency are on board as part of a working group of six companies that developed the scheme.