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MORE SAFETY AND LESS PAPERWORK

Since the tragic Al Deebel incident, SVITZER has worked relentlessly to reduce risk and increase safety performance. This has primarily been done by focusing our safety efforts on decreasing the number of personal injuries consistently and by preparing for the implementation of the OVM SA standard throughout the organisation.

OVMSA AND TRC-F

The Offshore Vessel Management and Self Assessment system (OVMSA) is a best practice safety and quality standard developed by the oil majors. It is divided into four stages of compliance, the first and basic level being equal to the International Safety Management Code, which is a prerequisite for operating at sea. The OVMSA guidelines encourage vessel operators to assess their safety system against a certain level to which they must comply. The past year SVITZER has worked on establishing the OVMSA standard and aims at becoming stage two OVMSA compliant. Our goal is to become the front runner of our industry. Focusing on TRC-F (Total Recordable Cases Frequency) compared to LTI (Lost Time Incident) gives us room for learning how to prevent incidents, which could potentially turn into LTIs. In this way, we promote an even safer working environment for all our colleagues.

SPEAKING THE SAME LANGUAGE 

“Implementing the OVMSA standard will take us from seven regional systems to one global safety management system. It is basically about learning to speak the same safety language,” explains Head of Marine Standards, Bent Nielsen, who is responsible for the initiative. more safety and less paperwor k Since the tragic Al Deebel incident, SVITZER has worked relentlessly to reduce risk and increase safety performance. This has primarily been done by focusing our safety efforts on decreasing the number of personal injuries consistently and by preparing for the implementation of the OVM SA standard throughout the organisation. There are four main benefits of standardising the safety system:

1. Our operations will deliver a consistently high level of quality to our customers, regardless of where we operate in the world

2. From a growth perspective, complying with the OVMSA standard enhances our chances of winning future tenders when oil majors identify and select partners in the terminal or offshore industry

3. It will reduce paperwork significantly for our crews

4. It will give us a system that allows for uniform incident reporting and suggestions for improvement. This way we can learn from each other and further prevent incidents

BACK TO SCHOOL

Implementing the system involves educating approximately1,300 employees. In mid-October SVITZER launched pilot programmes in three ports in Australia and in Freeport, Bahamas. For the 22 Captains and Engineers attending the one-day training session in Freeport, the experience turned out to be very educational and required all the concentration the participants could muster in the heat of 30 degrees Celsius. But at the end of the course the excitement was visible. “Many of the guys had never worked with computers before so we started out with the basics,” says Robert Cartwright, Operations Manager at SVITZER in the Bahamas. “But they picked it up very fast, and at the end of the day they felt comfortable manoeuvring the system. I seriously doubt anyone wants to return to the old paper-based system ever again,” he chuckles.

LEARNING AS WE GO 

The standardisation of SVITZER’s new safety system has been a time-consuming task, but collecting and reviewing more than one thousand procedures, assessing every single one based on a best practice method, has paid off: a new set of standards with only 198 procedures (compared to the previously approx. 900 procedures) will be implemented globally in the beginning of 2014. “There are still a few glitches here and there,” Robert admits and continues: “But the beauty of the system is that it requires no thick manuals to learn. The system is online and can be developed continuously based on feedback from the crews.”

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