Tokyo – The United States Coast Guard (USCG) has authorized leading classification society ClassNK to participate in its Alternate Compliance Program (ACP) in addition to granting the authorization to carry out statutory surveys for US-flagged ships in 2011.
The ACP was developed as an alternative method for US-flagged vessels to fulfill the regulatory requirements for construction and operation. Under the program, ClassNK can now carry out a wide range of surveys and inspections on US-flagged vessels on behalf of the USCG.
This is good news for owners of US-flagged vessels. In accordance with USCG requirements, US-flagged vessels are required to undergo onboard inspections by the USCG before a Certificate of Inspection (COI) can be issued. Under the ACP however, the USCG can issue a COI to an NK-classed, US-flagged vessel based upon reports from ClassNK without the need for duplicative inspections. This eases the financial and regulatory burden on shipowners whilst maintaining existing levels of safety.
“Owners of US-flagged ships should be able to choose the classification society that best meets their needs. ClassNK’s timely and high-quality services consistently garner praise from shipowners, yards, designers and operators worldwide. Through the ACP we will continue providing our US clients with best-in-class services and support them in maintaining compliant, competitive operations, ” says ClassNK’s Regional Manager of North and Central America, Stewart Lee.
To be eligible to participate in the ACP, ClassNK satisfactorily performed a delegated function for two years from its first registration of a US-flagged vessel and demonstrated its commitment to continuous quality and vigorous verification of each vessel’s compliance with applicable standards.