OCIMF releases guidance on deck cargo, transferring personnel by crane

The following is text of a news release from the Oil Companies International Marine Forum (OCIMF):

(LONDON) — OCIMF has released two new information papers, "Transfer of Personnel by Crane Between Vessels" and "Deck Cargo Management Onboard Offshore Vessels."

Unsafe events over the past two decades have shown that offshore deck cargo operations are high-risk activities. To address the current lack of industry guidance, OCIMF has released "Deck Cargo Management Onboard Offshore Vessels."

This paper contains risk-based guidance and best practices on how to manage deck cargo in the offshore marine industry. It will help vessel masters, offshore industry personnel and vessel crews adopt safe working practices for deck cargo handling between shore base operations, offshore facilities and vessels, and includes guidance on:
    •    Accountability of key personnel involved in safe deck cargo handling operations.
    •    Best practice for a safe deck during operations.
    •    Routine lifts performed during offshore deck cargo operations.
    •    Deck cargo manifests and stowage plans.
    •    Deck cargo loading/backloading and discharge plans.
    •    Methods for deck cargo securing and lashing.
    •    Communication.
    •    Weather parameters.

The paper also includes an example Matrix of Permitted Operations (MOPO), which defines critical changes in conditions, operations or barriers and offers guidance on management of such change.

Personnel have been transferred by crane between offshore vessels and offshore platforms for many years and there are well established guidelines and regulations for this activity, including the requirement to have cranes certified for personnel transfer. A similar level of guidance and regulation has not been available for transfers of personnel between vessels, however, even though incidents have occurred.

"Transfer of Personnel by Crane Between Vessels" is intended to help vessel operators and owners, masters, officers, marine superintendents and mooring masters evaluate the risks associated with the transfer of personnel by a vessel’s onboard crane. It includes guidance on risk assessment, equipment, maintenance, training, company policies, procedures and emergency planning. An example transfer by crane plan is included, as well as competence assurance guidelines to help make sure everyone involved in the personnel transfer – including the people being transferred – are competent to do so.

As part of the information paper, OCIMF recommends the following:
•    All new tankers, irrespective of current intended trade/operations, should be fitted with equipment that is certified for the transfer of personnel.
•    Operators of existing tankers should consider upgrading and certifying equipment at the next opportunity.

Click here to download the papers.

By Professional Mariner Staff