With long experience in low-temperature Arctic operations in ice covered waters, Viking Supply Ships saw the value in the IMO Polar Code and decided to expedite its implementation. The process includes updates of vessels and equipment, and planning to produce the required documentation.
"As this vessel was already winterized and built for operation in cold climate, most of the additional requirements in the Polar Code were already fulfilled before we started the implementation process," says Andreas Kjøl, project director at Viking Supply Ships.
The IMO Polar Code is mandatory for all SOLAS vessels entering Arctic and Antarctic waters starting January 2017. The code is an add-on to existing IMO codes where the main requirements are related to safety (SOLAS) and protection of the environment (MARPOL).
DNV GL will, on behalf of the Flag Authorities, issue the Polar Ship Certificate for vessels complying with the new code. As a result of less ice and easier
access to polar waters, IMO saw the need for a common set of minimum requirements for vessels operating in these areas that are not covered by other regulations.
Increased shipping to support the oil and gas industry, mineral exports, and an expansion of cruise visits to these regions prompted IMO’s creation of the code.
The main additional risks identified when operating in polar waters are addressed in the IMO Polar Code and the different chapters describe different measures to mitigate these risks. Magne Viking is an ice-classed AHTS vessel capable of operations in harsh environment offshore regions, as well as Arctic/sub-Arctic operations. The DNV GL classed vessel is owned and operated by Viking Supply Ships.