Mar 15, 2018

A major step in offshore safety - Brazil

The change made by the DPC to NORMAM05/DPC Annex 4-A regarding the regulations for the transfer of personnel offshore is a significant step in moving towards creating an offshore environment that is safe for all workers to get to and from work.

The Brazilian Navy's Directorate of Ports and Coast (DPC) has recently altered the Maritime Authority Standards for the Approval of Material (NORMAN-05/DPC). The most important changes were alteration of item 0408 (Personnel Transfer Basket) and insertion of Addendum 4-A (Rules Governing Personnel Transfer Basket).

According to the DPC, the purpose of the alterations is to help to safeguard human life in offshore operations and to fine tune the safety technical requirements for the manufacturing of personnel transfer baskets - a concern of the Public Prosecution Service for Labor issues, which wants to improve worker safety in transfers between vessels and platforms.

NORMAN-05/DPC Addendum 4-A specifies that the structural features must be able to protect passengers from lateral, vertical and head impacts and must be made of stainless steel bars of tubes and enable buoyant material to be attached around it, so that an entire fully loaded basket assembly is able to float.

Reflex Marine, attentive to the Brazilian market

In order to meet the Brazilian legislation, Reflex Marine has launched the FROG-6, an operational tool that is able to provide a safe option for personnel transfers. The FROG-6 has been subjected to a variety of impact tests to verify its structural integrity and shock-absorbing capability and demonstrated its ability to self-align and float in water, something that is not possible with the traditional rope baskets.

FROG-6Crew transfer with FROG-6 offshore Brazil

Sandra Antonovic, the company's Chief Operating Officer (COO), says that, "it is a safer method than the traditional rope basket, because it protects the passengers in the event of a lateral or vertical impact, fall or heavy landing. Furthermore, the buoyancy panels enable the device to float and self-align."

Antonovic points out that the device is able to transfer injured people in safety, protecting them from falls, immersion and lateral and vertical impacts, confirming that, "The FROG-6 is also a safe and versatile transfer device in Medevac (medical evacuation) mode."

According to the executive, this change reinforces Brazil's position and desire to ensure an offshore environment that has minimal operational risks. Antonovic says that, "By prioritising the safety of offshore workers, Brazil is placing itself alongside Norway, the UK and Canada - countries in the vanguard of ensuring that all workers return home safely."

Antonovic added: “Reflex Marine is excited to see the DPC carrying out pioneering work on personnel safety in the Americas and is proud to be supporting the work of the DPC.”

Article featured in Subsea World Offshore Brazil, January 2018