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IMCA launches NE USA Focal Group

Published on 30 January 2023

Following IMCA’s seminar in Providence Rhode Island in November 2022, IMCA kicked off a new North East USA Focal Group at a two-hour seminar chaired by Dustin Varnell on 26 January 2023. Dustin is Osbit’s US Country Manager and IMCA’s Advisor – US Atlantic.

The aim of the focal group is, “to influence and shape the safe and efficient operations on the NE Atlantic Coast of North America.”

Its objectives are:

  1. Identify common matters of interest in the region.
  2. Identify the relevant guidance required to be able to be able to operate safely and effectively on the Atlantic Seaboard.
  3. Improve communications to increase IMCA profile and visibility in the region.
  4. Support the development of new guidance.

65 people attended the meeting both physically and virtually representing developers, regulators, contractors, suppliers and service companies.  

Patrick Donovan represented IMCA’s North America regional committee. Patrick and IMCA’s Client Engagement Director North America, Bruce Gresham, attended in person to provide a key interface to the existing committee and bring experience from the GOM.

There was high engagement from the attendees for the four main topics brought forward from the previous meeting in Providence:

  • Offshore fuel transfer.
  • SIMOPS / Feeder barges.
  • Emergency Response.
  • Offshore Regulation.

Rhys Jones, IMCA’s Technical Adviser Marine Renewables, highlighted a number of existing IMCA guidelines which are already available for use.   

The group identified the need for working groups to be formed to address these immediate areas of offshore fuel transfer, simultaneous operations (SIMOPS) and emergency response.  A number of the attendees volunteered to support these workgroups including representatives from the US Coastguard who are already associate members of IMCA. Strategic partner G+ identified that their emergency response guidelines will be published shortly.

Jamie Lescinski, US Offshore Wind BD Director at Boskalis Offshore was nominated to Chair the Focal Group moving forward.