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Opportunities & exposure in Marine Operations…

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  • What are the risks in marine operations and how can we minimise them?
  • How do we manage when things go wrong?
  • What are the tools and strategies we can use to motivate and train the workforce to deliver in challenging work environments?

These are just some of the topics that will be discussed at the forthcoming International Marine Contractors Association (IMCA) Safety and Environment Seminar, with its theme ‘Opportunities and Exposure in Marine Operations’ being held in Houston, Texas on 19-20 March.

Endorsed by the Center for Offshore Safety (COS) and the Offshore Operators Committee (OOC), IMCA’s Safety and Environment Seminar is the annual meeting place for those at the forefront of the marine contracting industry, with delegates expected from all around the world.

The Seminar is largely attended by (but not limited to) those in QHSE and operational management roles for contractors, oil companies and suppliers involved in offshore operations. This year the event will also be open to non-members, so the mix of people joining the debate from health, safety, quality and environmental backgrounds across the industry is expected to be greater than ever. Registration is available to all those with an interest in the technical developments and QHSE in marine contracting.

All have the opportunity to listen to keynote addresses and presentations given by the specialists on safety and environmental issues affecting the industry; take part in round table discussions which often drive the development of IMCA’s guidance; and network with colleagues in health and safety critical roles at two informal evening events.

The Seminar Day by Day – Day 1
Following the introduction and welcome by Jerry Grishaber of Helix ESG, Chairman, IMCA Central & North America Section there will be two keynote addresses on opening morning – the first on ‘Strategic objectives to address future opportunities & exposure’ will be given by David Forsyth of Bibby Offshore who is Chairman of IMCA’s Safety, Environment & Legislation Core Committee, and who chairs the first day’s proceedings.

The second, by Commander James V Rocco of the United States Coast Guard will be address ‘Safety in offshore marine operations – the USCG perspective’ in which Cdr Rocco plans to discuss the current advanced notice of proposed rulemaking (ANPRM) the Coast Guard recently published regarding the possibility of a Coast Guard SEMS requirement, and also to touch on dynamic positioning (DP) regulatory progress and forthcoming Hazardous Location regulations.

Henk van Ketel of Heerema Marine Contractors will then look at ‘Safety leadership –feedback from the 2013 IMCA Safety & Environment Seminar’, before the IMCA confined space DVD is launched.

Prior to the first round table of the Seminar ‘Safety opportunities: leadership, culture, engagement (led by Henk van Ketel) there will be two presentations, ‘Promoting health and safety at work through worker engagement’ (Darren Matkin, Saipem) and ‘Setting a strong safety climate on a construction project from day one’ (Don Groover, behaioral Science Technology).

Following lunch on Day 1, lifting operations come under the conference spotlight with ‘How to maintain crane safety in marine lifting operations’ (Per Arild Åland, DNV), ‘Case study: wire under tension’ (Hans Nagtegaal, VSMC), and ‘Removal and disposal of offshore installations – a contractors’ view’ (Bart Poolman, Heerema Marine Contractors) leading to the Lifting operations roundtable led by Rolinda van Zanten of Van Oord Offhsore BV.

Offshore renewables are a rapidly growing area of interest for IMCA members, and Alan MacLeay of Seaway Heavy Lifting, Chairman, IMCA Renewable Energy Workgroup will give a presentation on ‘Safety in the offshore renewables sector’, with Ed Gross of Shell following with ‘Sharing best practice for working at height’. The Safety exposure: working at height round table discussion then follows; with David Forsyth wrapping up the day with a summary.

Day Two
Chaired jointly by Pat Eiland, Offshore Operators Committee and Eric Roan, Center for Offshore Safety, Day Two sees a presentation by Eric Roan on ‘Safety & Environmental Management System (SEMS)’ before a SEMS round table discussion led by Phil Miller of Subsea 7.

The important topic of competence is the subject of two presentations ‘A global challenge: upkeep & improvement of individual & corporate competence and training’ (Sergio Cappelletti, Drass Energy) and ‘Enabling competence for safety committee representatives’ (Mark Bosson, Technip) before the Competence as part of the safety toolkit round table discussion led by Mark Bosson.

Following lunch there will be presentation on ‘Safety S.P.O.T.(Strengths, Problems, Opportunities and Threats) (ComedySportz®); Enhancing diving safety in the Gul of Mexico – an operator/industry collaboration (Randall Abadie, Gulf of Mexico Diving Safety Workgroup); ‘Health sensitisers’ (Allison Laws, IOSH); and ‘Offshore safety and environment protection in Indian waters’ (Natesan Ramalingam, IGOPL).

The final session of the Seminar hears a case study ‘Automated pipe-handling equipment’ delivered by Simone Passarella of Saipem, before the final Round table discussion which provides delegates, led by David Forsyth, with an opportunity to summarise key points of the two days’ round tables, followed by a summary of the second day of the event by David Forsyth.

Social events – an important element
Social events and the opportunity to network informally are always an important aspect of IMCA events. The first social event, the Opening Night Drinks Reception and Registration is at 17:00 on Tuesday 18 March, the evening prior to the Seminar. This reception takes place at the end of the IMCA Central & North America Section meeting (open to all Seminar delegates – and scheduled to start at 14:00) at the Westin Hotel. The evening is sponsored by Stanford Marine.

The Seminar Drinks and Dinner takes place immediately after the close of the first day of the Seminar (16:45), and is followed at 19:00 by the Seminar dinner sponsored by Drass Energy.

Lunch and coffee breaks throughout the two days sponsored by EMAS AMC, DEME, Mieka Dive Training Institute (MDTI), Tetra and Subsea 7 provide delegates with an opportunity to  network when the subject matter is freshest in their minds.

Further information
Further information on all aspects of the IMCA Safety & Environment Seminar, including the full programme, registration and accommodation details is online at http://www.imca-int.com/events/imca-annual-safety-seminar-2014.aspx.

The website – www.imca-int.com – is an invaluable source of information on IMCA’s activity on behalf of its 950+ members in 60 countries.  The association has LinkedIn and Facebook groups and its Twitter handle is @IMCAint

About IMCA

  • IMCA is an international association with some 970 members in over 60 countries representing offshore, marine and underwater engineering companies. IMCA has four technical divisions, covering marine/specialist vessel operations, offshore diving, hydrographic survey and remote systems and ROVs, plus geographic sections for the Asia-Pacific, Central & North America, Europe & Africa, Middle East & India and South America regions. As well as a core focus on safety, the environment, competence and training, IMCA seeks to promote its members’ common interests, to resolve industry-wide issues and to provide an authoritative voice for its members.
  • IMCA Vision & Strategy. As a result of work and collective input in 2013, IMCA has redefined its stated core purpose to be “Improving performance in the marine contracting industry”. To achieve this goal, IMCA’s Vision & Strategy has been devised with two elements in mind: Core activities and ways of working. Targets and objectives against which the association will measure progress in 2014 have been established.  Note to Editors: We are more than happy to expand on this in tailor-made articles – just put us to the test, email judithpatten@jppr.uk.com or phone her on+44(0)20 8241 1912 to explain what you would like covered, length, and deadline.
  • IMCA publishes some 200 guidance notes and technical reports – many are available for free downloading by members and non-members alike. These have been developed over the years and are extensively distributed. They are a definition of what IMCA stands for, including widely recognised diving and ROV codes of practice, DP documentation, marine good practice guidance, the Common Marine Inspection Document (CMID) – now available electronically as eCMID, safety recommendations, outline training syllabi and the IMCA competence scheme guidance. In addition to the range of printed guidance documents, IMCA also produces safety promotional materials, circulates information notes and distributes safety flashes.

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