LOC’s 9th annual technical seminar held in Trinity House
LOC Group welcomed over 75 attendees to its popular annual technical seminar on Thursday 20 October, 2016. This year’s event was titled “From Cradle to Grave – the Hazardous Life of a Ship”.
The guests were representatives from legal firms, underwriters, P&I Clubs and auditors from across the maritime sector and the London seminar followed a similar event held earlier in the month in Newcastle.
The annual seminar, the ninth in the series, discussed the hazardous lifetime of a ship, ‘from cradle to grave’. Introduced and facilitated by LOC’s London managing director Jonathan Britain, the first speaker was Simon Pollard.
Risk Mitigation in New Construction
Simon Pollard, Shipping Technical Director, Naval Architect
Simon talked about risk mitigation during ship procurement and construction, covering different newbuilding strategies, the principle procurement stages and finally some case studies illustrating different points from his presentation.
Risk mitigation during construction was assessed from the owner’s viewpoint, reflecting the perspective of much of the audience. Simon’s presentation considered the importance of clearly establishing the definition of the project, noting how the design spiral is used to evaluate, assess and review the design details until the project is clearly and properly defined.
He considered the tender preparation, invitation and selection and the contract development with key areas to consider to ensure risk is minimised. Simon particularly focused on yard selection as the biggest single factor for risk mitigation, it having the biggest impact on quality, cost and schedule.
He highlighted key aspects of the construction process and the importance of paying attention to detail throughout. Finally, he shared case studies illustrating what could happen when the process goes awry, often leading to poor quality taking excessive time to repair and subsequent rescission of the contract. He stressed the need to pay attention to detail in yard and sub-contractor selection, and in the plan approval and supervision processes.
He concluded that the key stages in the newbuild process have to be managed carefully, thoroughly and continuously to manage risk effectively, something no owner can afford to ignore in the current climate.
The next speaker, Paul Whyte, examined the risks involved in bad navigational practices.
Risk Mitigation in Navigation: Analysis of Poor Practice
Paul Whyte, Associate, Master Mariner
Paul talked about the vital importance of situational awareness, something that is often lacking with more and more electronic information on a ship’s bridge. As he stated, the most important thing is to know where you shouldn’t be, not necessarily where you are. Paul recommended the acronym COAST as a good guide to navigational risk management, standing for concentration, observation, anticipation, space and time.
He then used a selection of aviation accidents and their root causes to make the point that the overwhelming majority were caused by human error. Valuable safety lessons were learnt from each tragic accident in the aviation world which were equally applicable to maritime practice.
Analysis by Allianz revealed that 75% of maritime losses in 2015 were the result of grounding – bringing home his earlier point that situational awareness is key: not necessarily where you are, but where you shouldn’t be. Paul then demonstrated LOC Group’s software MADAS, which is used to analyse maritime accident data, revealing with an exceptional level of accuracy a vast array of navigational information and data, that can then be used to understand accidents and disputes.
Paul concluded that the IMO pillars of berth-to-berth voyage planning; appraisal, planning, execution and monitoring should be followed at all times, alongside full compliance with the International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea 1972 (the “Colregs”).
The third and final speaker was Paris Mangriotis who discussed the role of risk assessment in the contractor selection process and in the execution of the operation.
Risk Mitigation in Wreck Removal Operations
Paris Mangriotis, Engineering Director, Naval Architect
Paris highlighted the high risk nature of wreck removal, where an urgent response is often required. All too often the weather conditions are likely to worsen, the location may be remote and there may be significant challenges arising from the condition of the seabed and local geography.
Paris went on to outline just some of the many risks associated with wreck removal, including safety issues, pollution, a change in the wreck circumstances, breakdown of equipment, weather, a failure in the methods adopted, financial / budgeting errors, and specifically for the owner or P&I Cub – delays and increasing costs.
He added that these could be split into immediate risks; casualty response, bunker removal and liaison with the authorities, and the longer term risks as the project developed.
The longer term risks associated with the tender process and all stages of contracting should be assessed to identify the ‘make or break’ risks which could significantly delay progress. A comprehensive risk register should be compiled.
A wreck removal project may mean using untried contractors with many stakeholders to manage and unpredictable local regulations and legal enforcement. BIMCO contracts are available for the different contracting methodologies entitled wreckhire, wreckfixed and wreckstage, the latter increasingly becoming the most popular.
The risks can be further reduced during execution by bringing in extra people to manage the risk of pollution or to increase safety. Time and cost overruns can be avoided by identifying a realistic schedule initially and through the implementation of a strong project management culture. Contract details should incentivise the contractor in the right direction. Time should be allowed during the contracting process to ensure that a successful methodology can be correctly identified. A thorough assessment of the proposed contractors’ resources and technical management is required to confirm their competence to complete the work.
Paris showed a weather delay example of the statistical risk analysis methodology being developed by his team. He concluded his presentation with a case study illustrating the changing scenarios and challenges overcome during a recent high profile wreck removal project. Technical reviews during the project offered opportunities to adapt and develop the project methodology to reduce risk in its implementation.
The LOC Group Technical Seminar is a popular annual event, attracting lawyers, auditors, underwriters and P&I Club representatives. Following its inception onboard HQS Wellington, it has been held more recently at Trinity House, London. The technical presentations are delivered by senior representatives from the LOC Group and the event ends with networking drinks. To enquire about attendance at the 2017 LOC Technical Seminar, please contact Pragna Varsarni on email@example.com