MOBILE OFFSHORE UNITS
This administration has registered FPSOs and other mobile offshore units (MOUs) since the mid-nineties and continues to do so. Certification requirements for different units vary and are heavily dependent upon the type of unit. Sometimes SOLAS certification is the most appropriate and sometimes the MODU Code is applied either as a stand-alone Code or through the application of a Load Line exemption.
IMO MSC-MEPC.2,Circular 9 recognises that compliance with relevant conventions and with relevant industry guidelines, contributes from different perspectives to safety and to the prevention of pollution by MOU operation. Using guidance contained within this circular, this administration applies a comprehensive yet pragmatic approach to the applicability of maritime conventions to MOUs given their unique operations and considers that:
- The SOLAS, STCW and Load Line Conventions are not applicable to MOUs which are moored or otherwise maintained in a fixed position offshore;
- The annexes of MARPOL remain applicable, Annex I being applied to the extent recommended by resolutions MEPC.139(53) and MEPC.142(54);
- An approved safety management system, including a maintenance programme particularly for essential marine systems and equipment, must remain effective at all times;
- The competence of onboard personnel, both marine and production, must be maintained at an adequate level.
Prior to moving off station and undertaking an international voyage under its own power, however, a self-propelled MOU must be issued with certification confirming compliance with SOLAS/MODU Code as well as the Load Line Convention, in addition to MARPOL. Manning requirements must also be considered in consultation with this administration.
Pre-registration survey and Initial General Inspection (IGI)
Prior to registration, each MOU is attended for a pre-registration survey and IGI by a surveyor from this office during which the unit’s condition is assessed and its suitability for registration is determined.
All statutory surveys are undertaken by Class on behalf of this administration.
In addition, the unit is subject to General Inspections by a surveyor to this administration at intervals no greater than 36 months. Two such General Inspections shall take place in any five year period.