Coronavirus pandemic has resulted in a huge rise in demand for remote inspections of offshore facilities by classification societies
Demand has jumped by 900% for the shore-based inspection of offshore assets and equipment since the outbreak of Covid-19, according to Bureau Veritas.
It has seen an escalation in requests for its remote inspection, certification, examination and verification services as businesses keep employees safe from coronavirus.
Inspections and verification are important for offshore companies to comply with legislation and performance requirements for their assets and equipment.
Offshore personnel use mobile cameras to enable class surveyors to complete inspections from shore offices, facilitating social distancing and reducing the need for travel.
Bureau Veritas has profiled activities and identified which inspections can be performed remotely and which cannot. This enables oilfield service companies to plan for the year ahead.
Where physical inspection is unavoidable, Bureau Veritas conducts a technical and safety assessment to reduce or eliminate risk at the site.
Bureau Veritas vice president for offshore services Paul Shrieve said coronavirus had accelerated the implementation of remote inspections.
“Previously, remote inspection of assets and equipment received a limited reception and was thought of as something that the industry should get around to,” he explained.
“Customers have been considering using remote inspection as an alternative way to meet the requirements of the Offshore Safety Directive for some time,” Mr Shrieve continued.
“However, since the start of this year demand has greatly increased. It is no longer a want, but a need.”
Major international oilfield operators and service companies are using Bureau Veritas’s remote inspection services. Shell UK is running a pilot programme using the class society’s remote-based verification services.
Mr Shrieve expects remote inspections and enabling technologies will be adopted throughout the offshore industry.
“The world will never be the same again, nor should it be,” he said. “At Bureau Veritas we have been very quick to take the learnings from Covid-19 and implement long-term changes that are both responsible and sustainable as everyone looks to adapt to the new normal.”
Digitalisation, class society solutions and remote surveys will be discussed during Riviera Maritime Media’s upcoming Vessel Optimisation Webinar Week, 12-15 May.