After hearing about the release this week by the International Association of Classification Societies (IACS) of the draft IACS harmonised Common Structural Rules (CSR), my first question was, what the heck are “harmonized Common Structural Rules?”
The Common Structural Rules (CSR) for Double Hull Oil Tankers and Bulk Carriers were adopted by IACS Council in December 2005 and came into force in April 2006. These two sets of Rules were developed independently and there were some variances in the adopted technical approaches for some elements of the Rules. To remove variations and achieve consistency, IACS made a commitment to Industry to harmonise the CSR, and the harmonisation project for the two sets of Rules began in 2008.
The harmonisation project also set out to achieve full compliance with the IMO Goal Based Standards (GBS) which come into force in the middle of 2016. With this objective in mind, this first release of the draft harmonised CSR and technical background are in compliance with the IMO Goal Based Standards (GBS), where Functional Requirements fall within the scope of these Rules.
The harmonisation project has delivered a single set of Rules comprised of common, harmonised requirements applicable to both Oil Tankers and Bulker Carriers with specific sections of additional requirements applicable to each ship type.
The harmonisation of the Rules also involves extensive technical work, testing and calibration, and now a period for the maritime industry and other stakeholders to review the draft harmonised CSR and raise questions, observations and general feedback. All of which can be done by visiting the IACS Knowledge Center HERE.
This initial industry review period will be followed by a second industry review period in the Spring of 2013 and a review by IACS Societies’ Technical Committees in the Autumn of 2013 with a view to adoption of the harmonised CSR by IACS Council in December 2013.