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Tuesday, October 16, 2018

INTERTANKO speaks at Germanischer Lloyd Seminar ‘Tanker Safety and the Role of Class’

“The tanker industry needs, and benefits from, a strong and healthy classification system. It also needs to maintain a strong and healthy dialogue with class,” said INTERTANKO MD Peter Swift in Hamburg this week at a seminar organised by Germanischer Lloyd on ‘Tanker Safety and the Role of Class’.

The tanker industry continues to improve both in its safety and its environmental performance, said Swift, but in a post-Prestige world of near zero tolerance of any tanker accident, it cannot afford to get the slightest bit complacent.

The classification societies, together with the tanker industry, have a host of challenges ahead – including recognition of the human element in design and operation, increasing expectations for machinery reliability, improvements in feedback mechanisms, the introduction of goal-based standards and their delineation with technical standards, to name but a few. He also spoke of the introduction of common rules for the structures of tankers and bulk carriers and the challenges posed for their subsequent development, as well as for classification societies in developing competitive strategies. In this latter respect, where class competition is based on service not standards, he asked on what should and could class compete – on price, on customer services, on technical know-how, on “unique” competences ? Any or all of these, he said, although they carried their own risks, but never on standards.

Further, by working together with each other (as IACS) and with the industry (as, for example in the recent Tripartite talks between shipowners, class and shipbuilders), the classification societies can help pull the industry into a closer relationship with the regulators to ensure that new regulation makes for sensible, practical and feasible ways of achieving safe shipping and protection of the marine environment.

Click hereto view Peter Swift’s presentation.

Contact: Peter Swift