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Director’s log

September has been a very busy month for the Secretariat as preparations are made for the second round of main committees, sub-committees, work and focus groups meetings and which culminate in the Executive Committee on 11 November in Houston.

My first task on my return to work was to join Raj Shetty, Senior Technical Advisor, at the South American Oil Terminal and Monobuoy Operators (SLOM) annual conference (see below). I was hugely impressed by i) the collaboration across the South American industry to support the conference and share operating procedures, significant events and incident learnings for the betterment of their industry, and; ii) that ‘conformance with OCIMF Best Practices’ was mentioned numerously as the standards to which they all operate to. Very encouraging. We ran an all morning workshop on the maintenance and operation of monobuoys using the soon-to-be-published third edition of Single Point Mooring Maintenance and Operations Guide which was very well received.

I then visited the European Commission where the important topics of discussion were the looming end of the EU NAVFOR ATALANTA mandate in the Indian Ocean (post-2016), Monitoring, Reporting and Verification of greenhouse gas emissions (EU programme being ahead of IMO), the refreshed thinking of a European Coast Guard (refreshed following the current cross-Mediterranean migration being experienced). 2017 is going to be a year where the maritime will take centre stage due to Malta’s presidency in the first half of 2017 followed by the UK in the second half, both island nations. The Commission is planning to fit in with this priority and use this opportunity to propose a series of initiatives, likely to follow on from the mid-term review of the EU’s Maritime Transport Policy to 2018 due at the end of this year. We need to be engaged as their thinking develops.

I’d like to thank Petrobras/Transpetro for the article below on the station keeping at single point moorings workshop. We are always delighted to receive news from our members and would encourage you to send any news or pictures that you’d like to share to

Having plugged my Mt Kilimanjaro trek in the last monthly letter, I feel duty bound to report on it. I managed to get to 5,300m before the altitude got to me (and the two similarly aged people trekking with me). However, my daughter made it to Stella Point (5,756m) and raised the OCIMF flag that Rebecca kindly gave me. It was an amazing week, hard work but equally enjoyable. Most importantly, I raised £1,614.37 from friends, family and colleagues which my parent company will double up. So the Merchant Navy Fund will benefit to the tune of £3,228.74. Thank you for your support.

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Andrew Cassels

Director OCIMF

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Monobuoy and Oil Terminal Operators conference

Andrew Cassels and Raj Shetty represented OCIMF at the Latin-American Society of Monobuoy Operators’ (SLOM) 11th Monobuoy and Oil Terminal Operators conference in Lima, Peru. The event was attended by 280 participants from 30 countries.

The annual conference brings together the marine community in Latin America, and is themed on Single Point Mooring (SPM) and Oil terminal operations. This year’s sessions included technical discussions on Single Anchor Leg Mooring (SALM) and Catenary Anchor Leg Mooring (CALM) systems, active and passive protection systems for hose strings, marine breakaway couplings, mooring hawser integrity and maintenance, etc.

SLOM have been promulgating OCIMF guidelines among its membership and within the Latin America region, and have been actively encouraging its members to identify gaps between current regional operating practices and those recommended by OCIMF.

Speaking at the opening ceremony, Andrew Cassels commended the objectives of SLOM and the progress achieved in raising marine standards within Latin America.

During the conference, the director and senior technical adviser met with Maritime authorities of Peru who have expressed interest in having a cooperation agreement with OCIMF to raise maritime standards at terminal installations in Peru, and were particularly interested in learning more about the MTIS programme. OCIMF also met with Latin American members have requested translation of OCIMF documents to Spanish.

During the conference, OCIMF hosted a workshop on SPM operations, during which the audience shared challenges faced and clarified questions relating to the forthcoming SPM Maintenance and Operations Guide.

Left to Right: Laurent Bianchi (Total), Nick Ryan (BP), Kim Mikkelsen (Maersk), David Wall – Chair (Chevron), Joe Megeed (Secretary), Ahmer Saeed (Shell), Cataleco Luciano (Sonangol), Dragos Rauta – guest (INTERTANKO), Bob Cutrona (ExxonMobil), Mike Davison (BG), Krystyna Tsochlas – Vice Chair (P66)

The Marine Technical Sub-Committee

The 31st Marine Technical Sub-Committee (MTSC) met in the OCIMF London offices 8-10 September hosted by Shell.

The MTSC has submitted two information papers (Personnel Transfer by Cranes and the Guide for Implementation of SOx Exhaust Gas Cleaning Systems) to the General Purpose Committee (GPC) for review.

The MTSC continues to support OCIMF committees providing technical input on various topics. The group has recently provided input for the Tanker Management Self-Assessment (TMSA) 3 review, the Ship Hardening for Security work group, Ship Inspection Report Programme (SIRE) focus group queries, and various other topics of technical nature. The MTSC also participates in the periodic updates of existing OCIMF publications and creates new papers on topics that are of interest to our members to provide direction and assistance. In addition to the intrinsic OCIMF items, the MTSC stays engaged and actively provides input to the Secretariat on items at the IMO and EC, such as Fuel Oil Quality, Ballast Water Management, MRV (Monitoring, Reporting Verification), and On Board Lifting Appliances to name a few.

The MTSC is currently seeking additional members to join the committee and provide valuable technical input and provide work outputs. Any interested member companies are encourage to apply by communicating their interest to The objective of the MTSC is to discuss and highlight key areas of design, construction, maintenance and repair impacting the marine vessel operation and offshore marine activities. The MTSC makes recommendations to improve reliability, safety, and protection of the environment. The MTSC reports to the GPC and supports technical aspects across all committees and focus groups within OCIMF. MTSC meets every six months and performs various work intersessional.

Next meeting is scheduled for 23-25 February 2016 with BG in Houston.

Revising of Design and Construction Specification for Marine Loading Arms

As noted in the June issue, the work has begun on updating and revising the Design and Construction Specification for Marine Loading Arms, 1999.

The work group held their third meeting on 16-17 September at the London OCIMF offices with a strong attendance by OCIMF members and manufactures. The work group is making progress in updating the document to include additional functional descriptions within the document and also updating newer technologies that have become available since the last revision.

The work group is still early in the stages of updating the document and one more meeting is planned for December 2015 before the holiday break begins. The work group includes participants from the following member companies and organisations: Shell (Chair), ExxonMobil, P66, MIB Italiana, Emco Wheaton, Macgregor/Woodfield, FMC Technologies, Kanon Loading Equipment, Niigata, SVT and SIGTTO.

In the photo above from left to right: Back Row: Roberto Kross (MIB), Kevin Laenen (Shell), Joe Megeed (OCIMF), Gerrit Boonen (Kanon) Middle Row: Bernhard Ebert (Emco-Wheaton), Dave Thomson (Shell), Jean-Claude Cartereau (FMC), Cherian Oommen (SIGTTO), Alan Westerberg (Macgregor), Joachim Siebers (SVT) Front Row: Martin Shaw (Technical Writer), Bill Asante (ExxonMobil), Atsushi Takada (Niigata), Kazuki Takasawa (Niigata)

Eighth North America CAT 3 focus group

The eighth North America CAT 3 focus group meeting was held on 2-3 September hosted by ExxonMobil in their office at The Woodlands, Texas, USA.

The meeting was attended by nine members. The meeting was very productive, resulting in the active discussions on:

  • Inspection and Inspector Issues.
  • Review of Articulated Tug Barge (ATB) and Barge variants in the barge inspection questionnaire (BIQ).
  • CAT 3 Auditor selection criteria.
  • Barge Inspection Reports Feedback.
  • Dates for the next CATNA Inspectors training course were agreed 5-7th April 2016 in Houston, the venue will be announced in 2016.
  • Dates of the next CAT3NA Focus Group meeting will be 17-18th Feb 2016 to be hosted by Shell at their office in Houston.

OVID, OMOG and FSG meetings

In September there was the tenth meeting of the Offshore Maritime Operations Group, the eleventh meeting of the Offshore Vessel Inspection Database (OVID) focus group and eleventh meeting of Floating Systems Group.

From left to right: Floating Systems Group, Offshore Maritime Operations Group and OVID Focus Group.

Maritime Security News

IMB Conference

OCIMF attended the International Chamber Of Commerce (ICC) International Maritime Bureau (IMB) International Meeting on Piracy, Armed Robbery and Maritime Security in September.

Over 200 delegates from 30 countries and 10 international organisations gathered to reflect on the cooperation between navies, agencies and the maritime sector in all areas where mariners are threatened. The event was well managed and hosted by the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency, Interpol and the Royal Malaysia Police.

The backdrop to the conference is the trend in global statistics showing a continual increase in the number of piracy and armed robbery attacks against merchant ships and seafarers. The two day event covered:

  • Maritime Security – Overview of high risk areas.
  • Piracy and Armed Robbery – A need for intelligence sharing.
  • The future of self-protection measures – an industry perspective.
  • International initiatives.
  • Panel discussions: Maritime Security – challenges and response.
  • Evidence gathering and Law Enforcement.
  • Combating piracy and armed robbery at sea - towards a sustainable global information sharing framework.
  • The human element.

More detail of this effort can be found at:

Indian Ocean – High Risk Area

Members will be aware from previous newsletters, discussion at the IMO and the most recent communique of the Contact Group on Piracy off the Coast of Somalia (CGPCS), industry has been under increasing pressure to revise the boundaries of the high risk area (HRA) as defined in BMP4.

In response to this pressure a risk assessment of the HRA has been performed by OCIMF, ICS, BIMCO, INTERTANKO and Intercargo and supported by a robust threat assessment provided by the Shared Awareness and Deconfliction initiative (SHADE). The industry group will present its conclusion to the United Nations Contact Group on Piracy off the Coast of Somalia (CGPCS) Chairman by 08 October 2015. These conclusions will be available to members on the OCIMF website at the same time.

News from our members: International Workshop on Station Keeping at Single Point Mooring’s

Transpetro Academy hosted an unprecedented event for the company and the entire oil industry.

The first International Workshop on Lessons Learned in Single Point Mooring’s (SPM) Operation, held on 22-23 September brought together more than 60 people, including representatives of 6 foreign oil companies and three non-governmental non-profit organisations: OCIMF; Sociedad Latinoamericana de Operadores de Terminales Marítimo Petroleros y Monoboyas (SLOM); and The International Tanker Owners Pollution Federation Limited (ITOPF).

The president of Transpetro, Rubens Antonio Silvino, emphasised the uniqueness of the event at the opening ceremony. “I am proud to receive here companies and organisations that truly care about the safety of operations and the preservation of the environment. To expose and to discuss the causes of accidents to draw lessons from them is not easy, but is a strong demonstration of confidence, pursuit of improvement and, above all, of great wisdom. There is a strong convergent energy here, as we all seek the same goal: zero accidents”, he said.

About 600 monobuoys are in operation worldwide, with 10% of the total in Latin America. Considering that in the last three years it has been identified the occurrence, worldwide, of incidents with very similar causes, Transpetro, in partnership with the OCIMF and SLOM, took the initiative to promote the workshop.

At the event, each company presented an incident occurred in the operation of its SPM systems, followed by extensive debate. After the workshop, a document was produced with all the learned lessons during the two days of activities. The internationally recognized associations will act as catalysts of the information.

The first International Workshop on Learned Lessons in SPM’s Operation is part of the Tactical Plan of the Pipelines and Terminals Directorate (DDT) for 2015. Coordinator of the event, the DDT’s consultant Luciano Maldonado explained the difficulty to realize the meeting. “It's a very specific subject, surrounded by many cares and only we, operating companies, can answer our questions. That’s why the importance of sharing information”.

The mood of the event, by its novelty, was frank expectation. According to the representative of OCIMF, Raj Shetty, the absence of a culture of sharing learned lessons in the oil industry makes it very significant that companies get together to discuss, openly, their experiences and their mistakes for the benefit of all.

“Our expectation is that we will be able to capture the lessons learned from these incidents, produce recommendations and best practices and disseminate them globally for the benefit of the entire oil industry” Raj Shetty said. OCIMF is recognised as the world's leading authority when it comes to safe operation of marine terminals, ships and offshore support vessels.

To the representative of the US company Chevron, Paul Tait, this event can influence the oil industry. “To discuss our difficulties to get to the best practices is a really excellent and pioneering idea. Also important is the presence of SLOM and OCIMF, who will revert for the entire industry on this type of incidents.”

The representative of the Chilean company ENAP, Claudio Luengo, in turn, believes that to continue this type of event is more than an opportunity. “It is a necessity. Terminals shall continue to share their mistakes and incidents, because only then we will be able to establish best practices to eliminate them”.

Training Courses Singapore September 2015

A busy period of training over two weeks in Singapore from the 14-25.

During this period the following courses took place:

  • SIRE Refresher course with 30 attendees.
  • Two back to back ECDIS courses with a total of 40 attendees.
  • OVID refresher Course with 30 attendees.
  • SIRE New Inspector course with 19 attendees.

All courses were held at the Orchard Parade Hotel.

2016 SIRE Courses

New Inspector courses

Please note that all new inspector candidates must hold and submit an Electric Chart Display Information System (ECDIS) course certificate from June 2016.

The course must be classroom based; this does not need to be the IMO model course.

This will ensure that all candidates who pass their audit up to six months later (12 months if re-audited) are compliant with our guidelines by the time OCIMF arranged ECDIS courses cease.

11-17 April, 2016 Singapore
16-20 May, 2016 London
13-17 June, 2016 Houston, Texas
3-7 October, 2016 Singapore
5-9 December, 2016 London

Online registration has now been introduced for CAT1 courses. Sponsoring submitting members are able to send a link for candidates to register and approve all supporting documents prior to submittal to OCIMF. Instructions on how to do this have been sent but if you require further copies of the instruction manual please contact

Please ensure you register your candidates as soon as possible to enable us to determine if a course will take place. As course venues, visa applications, accommodation and travel arrangements of both attendees and instructors are to be taken into consideration, courses will be reviewed three months prior to the planned date. New Inspector Course registration will close three weeks prior to the planned date.

SIRE Refresher Course

Please note that Inspectors who have already emailed a copy of their ECDIS Course certificate to will not be required to attend ECDIS training.

ECDIS courses will be limited to 20 per session and we anticipate the demand for inspector placement will be greater as the deadline of 2017 draws closer. The places remaining may not necessarily be based local to you.

Please be advised that due to the lack of demand for Singapore ECDIS places in 2015 we will be assessing the requirement for Singapore courses at the beginning of 2016.

If you would like to take your ECDIS Course this year please contact

After 2017 it will be the responsibility of the inspector/member/employer to ensure that ECDIS training has been taken at their own cost in order for current inspectors to meet OCIMF guidelines to carry out inspections.

3-4 am February, 2016 Refresher Singapore
17-18 March, 2016 ECDIS Japan FULL reserve list open
4-5 am May, 2016 Refresher London
5th pm - 6 May, 2016 ECDIS London
20-21 am June, 2016 Refresher Houston USA
21 pm - 22 June, 2016 ECDIS Houston USA
10-11 am October, 2016 Refresher Singapore
7-8 November, 2016 ECDIS Dubai

There is no charge to attend SIRE refresher/ECDIS courses but costs associated with travel to and from the course, the inspector’s time, accommodation and meals are for their own account.

To reserve a place on a refresher course please contact

NOTE: Courses will only run if there are sufficient attendees. Costs associated with travel to and from the course, the inspector’s time, accommodation and meals are for their own account.