Panama explains revised proposals for SOPEPs

Further to earlier various advices from INTERTANKO (see here) regarding the Panama Canal Authority’s (ACP) proposals to introduce a SOPEP (Shipboard Oil Pollution Emergency Plan) for the Panama Canal. INTERTANKO wrote again to the ACP on the13 August 2004 raising our additional concerns. Click here to download a copy.

We have now received a reply to this last letter. Click here to download a copy. The ACP claims that additional training or elaborate exercises are not required under the revised proposals and that only simple exercises and record keeping are required - consisting of a phone call to the authorised person as well as the keeping of a record of the log.

Regarding the preparation of the PCSOPEP plans, it is stated that "in-house" resources can be used for this function provided that they have engaged in previous activities of this nature in the past.

On the subject of clarifications about the designated person ashore, the ACP says that the vessel’s P&I club or local agent may be considered as a candidate for the position, but it is clear that the ACP does not intend to stipulate who the designated person should be, other than the fact they must reside in Panama and be capable of performing the role.

Any comments or additional concerns should be sent to Howard Snaith