The International Marine Contractors Association (IMCA) has published Guidelines for Walk to Work (W2W) Operations’ (IMCA M254)
The document was published under the direction of IMCA’s marine division management committee after IMCA’s marine renewable energy committee formed a workgroup consisting of vessel owners, windfarm operators and gangway manufacturers, and worked alongside an oil and gas-focused industry steering group.
The walk-to-work guidance was produced to help standardise the way in which vessels provide safe access to offshore structures in the offshore wind and oil and gas industries. Heave-compensated gangways fitted to vessels stabilise the motions of the vessel so that people can transfer safely from a vessel to an offshore structure or platform. The intention is that by following the guidelines field operators, project planners, vessel operators and offshore personnel will work within a standard framework promoting safe W2W operations.
The guidelines include nine sections providing standard reference guidelines covering walk-to-work motion-compensated gangway operations for the offshore energy industry. The document advises on choosing the appropriate vessel and gangway as well as operational planning, including gangway maintenance and ensuring the competence of key personnel. The guidelines also cover emergency preparedness, including details on the IMCA incident reporting scheme and how to contribute lessons learned.
Six appendices are being produced by the industry steering group that provide detailed information covering motion-compensated gangways. Two are included in the initial publication, covering emergency protocols and a framework for hazard identification. The remaining four appendices will be integrated as they become available.
IMCA technical advisor – marine Andy Goldsmith said, “The guidelines will provide clarity for operators on how best to choose and implement the use of motion-compensated gangways, improving operational efficiency and safety standards for the offshore energy sector.”
The publication is available for free download by Members via the IMCA website at www.imca-int.com.