Rapid Response Damage Assessment. Operators of tankers, bulk carriers, gas carriers, containerships and tank barges transferring into ABS class will be offered complimentary enrollment into the ABS Rapid Response Damage Assessment program for the first year. The normal charge for developing the electronic model of each vessel that is used for calculating damage stability will also be waived. The service extends your capacity for responding to emergency incidents effecting hull strength and stability.
In addition, those vessels that elect to enter the program will be offered the new ABS optional class notation “RRDA”, which will provide evidence to port State authorities and other interested parties that the vessel meets the requirement for access to a shore-based, damage stability program.
Maintaining Statutory Requirements. ABS is recognized by the majority of international flag States and has been delegated authority to act as a Recognized Organization on behalf of more than 120 governments issuing a range of internationally required certificates for SOLAS, MARPOL and the Load Line Convention on the flag Administration’s behalf.
When a vessel transfers class to ABS from another IACS member, certain statutory certificates may remain valid. This varies depending on the flag Administration and circumstances. The ABS project team will work closely with the owner to ensure the statutory certificates are in order.
When transferring class, a change in flag may also be requested and new statutory certificates may be required. The new flag Administration will determine which certificates are needed. The ABS project team will coordinate with the new flag Administration to facilitate the process for the owner. When the exact requirements of the new flag have been determined, ABS will conduct the necessary reviews and surveys.
Gathering Vessel Information. For acceptance into ABS class, the owner of an existing IACS-classed ship will be asked to submit key hull, machinery, outfitting and automation plans and/or data in accordance with IACS Procedural Requirement PR1A, Section A, “Procedure for Transfer of Class.”
Technical Requirements. The IACS TOC procedure requires that the “losing” class society be notified within two working days of the official receipt of a written request from the owner indicating their intention to transfer the vessel’s class. As part of this agreement and for future ABS technical support, a package of plans and data are to be sent to ABS. Any remaining drawings that the owners cannot furnish may be obtained from the “losing” class society in accordance with the IACS TOC procedure, provided the owner gives ABS specific authorization to do so.
Survey Requirements. Any surveys or outstanding recommendations that are either due or overdue with the current society must be dealt with at the time of the Transfer of Class. Once the official survey status for each vessel has been received from the losing society, the ABS Survey Department will issue the final survey requirements.
Per IACS and ABS policies, a Preliminary Condition Survey is required for any vessel over 15 years of age.
The survey requirements for these vessels will be determined by the ABS Survey Department, and the typical pre-condition survey is completed within 20 man-hours. Typically, the requisite surveys to facilitate a Transfer of Class are scheduled with current survey activities to minimize cost.
Client Web Portal. A gateway to ABS services, the ABS MyFreedom web portal provides access to news, regulatory information, services and software designed to assist ship operators in managing their classification services. Through MyFreedom, users can tap into a host of software programs, including Rule Manager, a searchable online database of ABS Rules and IMO requirements. MyFreedom also provides access to the HSQE tools designed for owners to quickly identify best practices for upgrading their quality management systems or identify regulatory requirements based on specific project details.
Also available through the portal is Engineering Manager, which is currently used by thousands of ABS clients to manage the administration of their drawings throughout plan review. Used for both new construction and modification projects, this secure program tracks the progress of multiple drawings during the approval process, consolidating comments, generating reports and providing optional email alerts.