Lifeboat makers applaud GL service stance

LEADING lifeboat and davit manufacturer Schat-Harding and other leading manufacturers say that German classification society Germanischer Lloyd is showing its IACS colleagues a sensible lead in the way it will apply the service provisions set out in IMO MSC1206.

LEADING lifeboat and davit manufacturer Schat-Harding and other leading manufacturers say that German classification society Germanischer Lloyd is showing its IACS colleagues a sensible lead in the way it will apply the service provisions set out in IMO MSC1206.
 
“Coming ahead of an IMO meeting which will discuss how MSC1206 should be applied, GL has shown its colleagues in IACS the way forward,” says David Bradley, group after sales and service manager, Schat-Harding. “In its GL Infomail this month it tells owners that although MSC1206 is not mandatory for now, they should either use the manufacturer’s personnel or technicians approved by the manufacturer to service and test their lifeboats. If they choose to use non-approved service personnel, then GL will insist on having a surveyor present at all times during the work. This is a pragmatic approach which the other IACS classification societies and flag states would do well to follow if they really care about seafarer safety.”
 
IMO MSC1206 sets down rules and guidance on safe servicing of lifeboat equipment. Those guidelines require owners to use correct spares and technicians approved by the original equipment manufacturer. All the major lifeboat manufacturers have geared up global networks to provide Original Equipment Manufacturer service, and correct spare parts. However, some administrations and classification societies are effectively ignoring the IMO Guidelines and allowing any service station to carry out the IMO-mandated service work.
 
“We are happy to include independent lifeboat service stations into our network, they are a key part of our provision of global service,” explains Bradley. “But those independents in our network are approved by us, their technicians are trained by us and they will carry out the servicing work according to our systems. That way seafarers get the protection which IMO intended, of having properly serviced equipment. If service companies who are not approved or trained by the manufacturer are used, then owners are continuing to put the lives of their seafarers at risk and ignoring the IMO guidelines. Class has a massive responsibility to ensure that the guidelines are applied sensibly and globally, which is why we applaud the GL guidance, and we know other manufacturers share our sentiments.”
 
Schat-Harding is the world’s leading supplier of lifeboat and evacuation systems for the cruise, offshore and shipping industries. It aims to be a FIRST in safety for all its customers. With factories and offices in Norway, the UK, the Netherlands, Germany, Singapore, Spain, Canada, the Czech Republic, the USA and China, and agents in thirty other countries, Schat-Harding provides a global service and supply network. Brands now supported by Schat-Harding include Watercraft, Waterman, Fiskars, Davit-Company, William Mills Marine, Schat, Harding, Mulder & Rijke and the Beiyang Boatbuilding Co.

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