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Friday, January 19, 2018

EXXON TO CHANGE VETTING CRITERIA POST ERIKA AND MOVE VETTING BASE FROM SOUTHAMPTON TO LEATHERHEAD?

The French Government announcements on use of tankers in their waters are still being considered by charterers’ vetting departments, but it is alleged that Exxon are to change their vetting approval process.

Previously, experience showed they would grant approval for a period, generally a year, but depending upon the age of the tanker.  A voyage-based approval would come on top of that.  Now it may be that EXXON will no longer give period approvals but rather note that a tanker has been inspected, with little indication of whether it was found to be acceptable or not.  The approvals would then come on a per voyage basis.  This would have deep significance for traders requiring an owner to indicate if they have EXXON approval or not. No doubt Exxon were not pleased when it was noted in the French Accident Report dated 13 January 2000 (p. 18), that the Erika had just been approved by Exxon for one year.

INTERTANKO understands that EXXON will now transfer their vetting operation from their Standard Marine Services office in Southampton to the Esso head office in Leatherhead.  It is anticipated that this move will take place over the week end of 18 March.  There have already been moves made with Bob Frankland, former head of vetting at Mobil in Fairfax, Virginia, now in the SMS office.  Ian Scally is expected to move to Yokohama and will undertake a vetting function.  INTERTANKO will forward further details as they become known. For further information please contact robert.bishop@intertanko.com