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New CEO of IMCA now in post

Chris Charman has now taken over from Hugh Williams as Chief Executive of the International Marine Contractors Association (IMCA). He joined the association on 3 December working with outgoing CEO Hugh Williams, who is retiring at the end of the year. With two weeks in post under his belt, during which he has met scores of members and attended a host of meetings, Chris Charman said: “I love the passion I am seeing from members and am greatly looking forward to working with them in the coming years; and to learning in detail what they do. I am already appreciating

Major incident prevention at heart of IMCA safety seminar

The offshore oil industry has focused its safety efforts over the past 20 to 30 years on preventing incidents and injuries to people, basically preventing slips, trips and falls – the occupational health and safety aspects. In parallel there have been efforts to prevent major incidents involving multiple fatalities, or asset threatening events, and Macondo and Montara have further emphasised the need to continue to emphasise the need for prevention. The International Marine Contractors Association (IMCA), in its guidance, has addressed major events through, for example, its work on dynamic positioning (DP) and hence collision avoidance, engine room safety and

IMCA publishes Guidance on Offshore Vessel High Voltage Safety

The International Marine Contractors Association (IMCA) has published guidance on ‘Offshore vessel high voltage safety’ (IMCA SEL 031/IMCA M 217). “As the demand for electrical power increases on vessels, especially on large offshore construction vessels with diesel electric propulsion installations, the supply current becomes too high for efficient and practical use of the usual shipboard 3-phase voltage supply of 440 Volts (V) AC,” explains IMCA’s Technical Director, Jane Bugler. “To reduce the level of running currents and fault current levels, it is necessary to specify a higher system voltage for the higher power-rated equipment. “In marine practice, voltages below 1kV

From the President – December 2012

My 2 year term as IMCA President finishes at the end of 2012. The role is honorary but includes chairing the IMCA Overall Management Committee (OMC) and Council. OMC is responsible for IMCA’s successful management, creating direction and working with the secretariat to deliver the association’s work programme, whilst Council provides support and guidance to OMC from senior representatives of IMCA’s ICO members. I have enjoyed the role, and have seen firsthand and been impressed by IMCA’s delivery at a number of venues and events. The gestation of some of what we have delivered during my term, for example IMCA

IMCA publishes guidance on operational activity planning

The International Marine Contractors Association (IMCA) has published Guidance on Operational Activity Planning (IMCA M 220) to provide a brief overview of tabulated methods that are increasingly being used in the planning and execution of offshore marine vessel projects and routine offshore support activities. “Operational activity planning applies to all sectors of offshore marine operations, including offshore drilling, project and construction vessels and offshore supply vessels,” explains IMCA’s Technical Director, Jane Bugler.”Although usually applied to dynamically positioned (DP) vessels, the processes described in our new guidance can be used for non-DP vessels.” She adds that”operational activity planning comprises three processes:

Example Specification for DP FMEA for a New DP Vessel

Example specification for a DP FMEA for a new DP vessel (IMCA M 219) is a newly published document from the International Marine Contractors Association that provides, as the title indicates, an example of a specification for a dynamic positioning (DP) failure modes and effects analysis (FMEA) of a new DP vessel to be carried out prior to vessel delivery, probably by the shipyard as a contractual deliverable to the new owner. This first FMEA should be seen as a benchmark for subsequent analyses. “The objective of the FMEA is to identify the single point failures in any system in

IMCA publishes DP station keeping incidents

Fifty six accounts of incidents that took place in 2010 on 41 vessels were submitted for the annual Dynamic Positioning (DP) Station Keeping Incidents report produced by the International Marine Contractors Association (IMCA). These incident accounts have been analysed and included in the newly published report IMCA M 218. The largest percentage (37%) of incidents had ‘reference’ as their main cause, with many support submitters commenting that references had been a cause for concern. Electrical (21%), computer (11%) and power (9%) were the next highest scorers. Finally human error (5%), environment (7%), propulsion (4%) and procedure (4%) were the least

IMCA publishes new contracts

The International Marine Contractors Association (IMCA) has published the updated Contract for the Provision of ROV, Support Vessel and Associated Work (based on BIMCO Supplytime 89) – IMCA R 013 Rev, 1 and a new second publication based on BIMCO Supplytime 2005 (IMCA R 017), which is used by many IMCA members. Both set out relevant additional clauses and variations relevant to ROV operations. Each IMCA member is free to enter into whatever contracts it deems to be in its own interests. In publishing this contract, IMCA is aiming to raise awareness on contracting matters among IMCA members and their

IMCA annual seminar – the countdown begins in earnest

With less than a month to go before the 20th IMCA (International Marine Contractors Association) Annual Seminar, with its theme ‘Marine and subsea operations: a culture of sustainability’ is held in Amsterdam (28-29 November 2012), the countdown has begun in earnest. The delegate and speaker list includes leading industry figures and representatives from offshore and onshore management and operational staff, equipment suppliers, consultants, oil companies and regulators from around the world. “We have a superb and highly topical programme,” explains IMCA’s Chief Executive, Hugh Williams. “in politics, industry, design and construction, sustainability is a vogue word. According to Gro Harlem

Thruster integrity management guidance from IMCA

The International Marine Contractors Association (IMCA) has published ‘Guidance on thruster integrity management’ (IMCA M 216) describing integrity management systems and their application to marine thruster units installed in both new build and existing vessels. “Our new guidance document is designed to assist ship owners, operators and system designers in understanding the principles of integrity management and the benefits it can bring to the safe and efficient operation of both the thrusters units, and the vessels in which they are fitted,” explains IMCA’s Chief Executive, Hugh Williams. “Our aim in publishing the guidance is four-fold: to provide an understanding of

PLC information note issued by IMCA

Programmable Logic Controllers (PLCs) are widely used in a variety of small and large pieces of equipment on marine construction vessels, for example, cranes, winches, handling systems, dive systems and power management systems. The International Marine Contractors Association (IMCA) has issued a PLC information note to help ensure that operation and failure modes are understood, and highlighting the importance of carrying out an FMEA (failure modes and effects analysis) and testing the components and complete systems. “When a PLC controlled piece of equipment is in use and a main power failure occurs, the equipment should revert to a fail-safe position,

IMCA publishes ROV 2011 global statistics

Remotely operated vehicle (ROV) statistics for 2011 have been published by the International Marine Contractors Association (IMCA) as an information note (IMCA R 05/12). The statistics, intended to record personnel and vehicle levels, are collected twice a year in February and August. The 2011 figures show that IMCA members had fewer ROV personnel at work in 2011 than in 2010, and that ROV personnel numbers reported in August 2011 exceeded those in February 2011 by about 25%. In February 2011 a total of 2,410 personnel was reported to be involved in world-wide ROV operations (2373 ROV superintendents, supervisors and pilot

Guidance notes on diving and dumb barges produced by IMCA of use to offshore renewables sector

The International Marine Contractors Association (IMCA) has produced two information notes – ‘Diving on Offshore Renewable Energy Projects: Regulations and Guidance’, and ‘The Inspection and Auditing of Manned and Unmanned Barges’ which are of use, and interest, to those involved with offshore renewable energy projects. “As an increasing number of our members become involved with the offshore renewable energy sectors, we believe it is useful to them, and indeed to their clients, to have basic information in an easily digestible form,” says Jane Bugler, Technical Director of IMCA. “For example, the aim of the diving information note (IMCA M 18/12)

Encouraging responses to IMCA competence questionnaire

The results of a questionnaire, developed by the International Marine Contractors Association’s (IMCA) Competence & Training Core Committee, aimed at offshore personnel, revealed that 64% of the 276 offshore personnel from over 35 contractor members who responded used a competence scheme. “We were highly encouraged, not only by answers to the questionnaire, but that so many people took part in it,” says Hugh Williams, Chief Executive of IMCA. “It was possible for respondents to select more than one division from marine, diving, ROV and survey, and also to select more than one answer for what form of employee they were.

Arctic diving guidance on Canadian Underwater Conference programme

IMCA’s Arctic diving guidance will come under the conference spotlight on Monday 22 October when Peter Sieniewicz, Technical Adviser – Diving at the International Marine Contractors Association (IMCA) addresses the 5th Canadian Underwater Conference, being held in St John’s Newfoundland and Labrador. “The expansion of oil exploration and development into colder climates and Arctic regions has been the trigger for IMCA to look at specific diving guidance,” explains Peter Sieniewicz.”Routine diving operations in these harsh conditions produce a unique set of challenges not only for the people involved, but for the associated equipment and support logistics. In the conference session

Learning the lessons, reporting DP incidents

In recent years there has been an increasing scrutiny of DP incidents, due, amongst other things, to high profile maritime incidents. Ian Giddings, Technical Adviser – Marine, at the International marine Contractors Association (IMCA) will be addressing ‘Learning the Lessons, Reporting DP Incidents’ at the forthcoming Marine Technology Society’s Dynamic Positioning Conference – DP 2012, being held 9-10 October in Houston, Texas. “The voluntary reporting of station keeping incidents on DP vessels to IMCA for analysis has operated for over 25 years,” he explains. “In my presentation I will be looking at that system, including the lessons learned both about

IMCA Appoints New Chief Executive

Chris Charman has been appointed as Chief Executive of IMCA (the International Marine Contractors Association) taking over from Hugh Williams who is retiring. He will take up the position on 3 December 2012. IMCA is the international trade association for offshore, marine and underwater engineering companies with about 850 members in over 60 countries all around the world. It focuses on offshore construction and marine operations mainly in support of offshore oil & gas, but also marine renewable energy, dredging and telecommunications cable laying. The association exists to help its contractor members deliver safe and efficient projects supported by other

From the President – September 2012

Sustainability is an ‘in vogue’ word – so much so that we have used it for the theme of this year’s IMCA annual conference ‘Marine and subsea operations: a culture of sustainability’, being held in Amsterdam, the Netherlands on 28-29 November 2012. Join in the debate by registering for the event and mixing with your global peers. What is the marine contracting sector’s view on sustainability? Delivery of a sustainable performance requires strategic planning over a considerable period of time, which addresses safety and our environment as its primary goals. Investment in people and enabling assets further underpins sustainability, as