After a successful approval process and survey, international classification society DNV GL and the Norwegian Maritime Directorate have issued the first polar ship certificate to the Norwegian platform survey vessel MV Stril Polar.
The goal of the newly adopted IMO Polar Code is to ensure a minimum standard for ships entering into the Arctic waters and/or Antarctica. The code is an international set of rules that take into account the extreme conditions and the additional challenges vessels encounter in these areas.
The MV Stril Polar is owned by Norwegian shipowner Simon Møkster Shipping AS.
“The strategy of Møkster Shipping has for many years been to operate in cold and rough waters as opposed to targeting warmer areas such as Brazil or Australia,” said Anne Jorunn Møkster, Managing Director of Simon Møkster Shipping AS, after being awarded the certification. “Now that we have implemented the Polar Code for our offshore supply vessel MV Stril Polar, we have the opportunity to go into polar areas knowing that the safety of ship, crew and the environment is well taken care of. As a result of the good cooperation we have had with DNV GL, the Norwegian Maritime Directorate and our own insurance company we are very motivated to get more vessels certified to the Polar Code.”
The MV Polar Stril is built for operation in cold climates, so DNV GL says only minor adjustments were needed to achieve compliance with the Polar Code. Achieving compliance required DNV GL to undertake a risk assessment of the planned operational profile, as well as detailed review of the vessel’s equipment to ensure that the requirements of the code were met.
DNV GL says it found no deviations during its inspection of the vessel together with the Norwegian Maritime Directorate in November. The result is the Stril Polar is now the first Norwegian ship with a Polar Code certification.
Beginning January 1, 2016, the International Maritime Organization’s Polar Code is mandatory for all new SOLAS-registered ships that will be operating in Arctic and Antarctic waters. For existing ships, the Polar Code certification is required after the first intermediate or renewal inspection after January 1, 2018.
The polar code is a supplementary regulation to the existing IMO codes where the main requirements are related to safety (SOLAS) and the protection of the environment (MARPOL). DNV GL can, on behalf of the Flag States, issue Polar code certificates for ships that meet the code requirements.