OCIMF COVID-19 Update Bulletin #9 – A pragmatic approach to SIRE/OVID Inspections and Reports
COVID-19 continues to present challenges to our industry on many fronts. Normal inspections under the SIRE or OVID programmes are constrained due to travel restrictions, access through ports and terminals, social distancing and other health and safety considerations which vary depending on location. These restrictions are expected to continue to change country by country for some time. This update from OCIMF aims to remind and encourage members and users of inspection reports and other stakeholders to apply a pragmatic approach during this period.
Members will be very aware of the impact that these restrictions have on their ability to conduct SIRE and OVID inspections. OCIMF stresses that while the decision to undertake an inspection, or not, is for the Member company, all decisions should keep the health and safety of those involved at the forefront of their considerations. In line with the OCIMF Vision of “A global marine industry that causes no harm to people or the environment”, members are encouraged to apply a pragmatic approach when deciding to conduct an inspection. A pragmatic approach would include consideration of the following:
•Can an inspection be deferred to a later date – i.e. consider whether an inspection is essential at this time.
•The impact on the health and safety of all those involved in the inspection, and those that they interface with during the inspection.
•The steps that would need to be taken to adequately protect the people involved, including the implementation of social distancing measures and the use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), if the Inspection goes ahead.
SIRE/OVID report users
There has been a decrease in the number of inspection reports submitted to the SIRE and OVID databases due to the impact that these restrictions in travel, access through ports and terminals, social distancing and other health and safety considerations have on the ability to conduct SIRE and OVID inspections.
OCIMF stresses that while the decision on the use of a report is for the report user, recipients of reports from both databases should consider this decrease in the availability of inspection reports and take a pragmatic approach when reviewing reports.
A pragmatic approach would include consideration of the following:
•Age of the report – i.e. consider whether an older report than what is normally required will be acceptable.
•The risks if an older report than what is normally required is used.
•The use of additional data from the operator or from other sources to mitigate the risks that may be identified if an older report than what is normally required is used.
Extension of SIRE/OVID report availability due to COVID-19
To facilitate a pragmatic approach, OCIMF has extended the availability of ‘live’ reports in the SIRE and OVID databases to 18 months. This extension should assist marine assurance organisations and operators during this period of uncertainty.
Other measures and ongoing review by OCIMF
OCIMF is currently in the process of developing a remote inspection regime. This is in addition to other measures that have been taken by OCIMF to further support SIRE and OVID programme users and other industry stakeholders during the COVID-19 pandemic.
OCIMF will continue to keep the situation under review and investigate potential options that could be applied if the situation extends to a longer-term issue. OCIMF will provide updates as new information becomes available.