4th Edition of the Ship-to-Ship Transfer Guide Petroleum is now available

The Oil Companies’ International Marine Forum (OCIMF) and the International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) have now published the 4th edition of the captioned guidelines. The guide is aimed at providing advice to masters, marine superintendents and others responsible for planning ship-to-ship (STS) transfer operations.  

It is primarily directed to the transfer of crude oil and petroleum products between ocean-going ships. Although intended for operations taking place at sea, and therefore often beyond normal port services, it will also be of relevance in inshore waters or within harbour limits, although in such cases, special regard will have to be paid to local regulations.  

Members are advised that the operation known as "reverse lightering " (e.g. bringing a laden suezmax alongside a VLCC) is not dealt with specifically, but the guide does provide advice on such operations, in particular on issues such as fender selection. 

The 4th edition has been substantially updated and takes account of a new international standard 'Ships Marine Technology - Floating Pneumatic Rubber Fenders' SO 17357). 

This ISO standard was also referred to in our article in Weekly NEWS No. 23 dated 10 June 2005.

Issues covered within the revised publication include: 

-         Considerations for assessing the competence of appointed STS Superintendents;

-         Requirements for undertaking an operational risk assessment prior to commencing operations;

-         Fatigue awareness and reminders concerning compliance with International Labour Organization (ILO)/IMO requirements for working hours;

-            Enhanced information on the considerations for mooring following a study by an Oil Companies’ International Marine Forum (OCIMF) member including a summary of the findings being provided in the Annex to the book

-            Updated information on fender selection and usage considerations;

-            Expanded recommendations on the selection, inspection, testing, maintenance and use of flexible transfer hoses;

-            Enhancements to the guidance provided concerning safety of personnel during transfer between vessels;

-            Updating of the five comprehensive operational check lists covering the whole STS operation from pre-fixture, through the operations preparation and commencement, to the unmooring and departure, which will require both owner/operators and STS service providers to act accordingly. 

More will follow on this topic in future Weekly NEWS bulletins. 

Contact: Howard Snaith