The International Marine Contractors Association’s (IMCA) 2014 survey of remotely operated vehicle (ROV)s, and ROV personnel reveals that in February 2014 a total of 3,369 ROV personnel (superintendents, supervisors, pilot techs and other offshore ROV support personnel) were working, and in August the total figure was 3,617. The total number of ROVs in February was 677 and in August 726.
These figures compare with 3,663 personnel in February 2013 and 3,962 in August 2013; and 580 ROVs in February 2013 and 636 in August 2013.
The types of ROV in operation are broken down using the classes of ROV defined in IMCA R 004 Rev. 3 -Code of practice for the safe and efficient operation of remotely operated vehicles -Class I – Observation ROVs; Class II – Observation ROVs with Payload Option; Class III – Work-class Vehicles; Class IV – Towed and Bottom-Crawling vehicles; Class V – Prototype Development Vehicles.Class III vehicles were the most in use at the time of the two surveys – 518 in February, and 561 in August.
“These statistics are intended to reflect personnel and vehicle levels on two occasions in the year roughly six months apart – February and August,” explains IMCA’s Technical Director and Acting Chief Executive, Jane Bugler. However she warns:”From 2014 the figures were required for all personnel working on ROV operations both offshore and onshore and also for total numbers of ROVs in fleets. Some respondents did not fully understand this revised data collection requirement and therefore the figures for 2014 may not entirely reflect the status of the ROV industry exactly as intended.
“Also as the figures represent a snapshot, they do not take into account any major contract start or finish times. Though these statistics represent personnel and vehicles of IMCA members submitting statistics.
“We believe that the information here is broadly representative of a significant proportion of the ROV industry. 26 member companies reported their statistics for 2014 which was lower than the 32 reported in the previous year which has also affected the results. We look forward to receiving the 2015 figures for comparison purposes.”