ABS report reveals key insights into ballast water management systems
ABS, a leading provider of classification and technical services to the marine and offshore industries, published a report providing insights into how industry is progressing with ballast water management (BWM) systems. Based on input provided by owners and operators with BWM systems on board their vessels, the report covers a range of topics, including installation, commissioning and operations of BWM systems, ABS said in its press release.
To form an accurate picture of the current progress with BWM compliance, owners and operators with installed ballast water management systems were surveyed and invited to participate in the workshop. Survey results from approximately 30 owners and operators were aggregated to help identify trends and understand common practices while maintaining anonymity.
In analyzing the responses, ABS learned that 57 percent of the systems installed on the vessels were being operated. The remaining systems were either deemed ‘inoperable’ or considered ‘problematic.’
The report reveals that some of the major challenges that shipowners and operators face with BWM systems are related to software, hardware and the crew’s ability to operate the systems correctly. System operators have had to develop plans to keep up with hardware maintenance and maintain an inventory of spare parts on a vessel. A recurring concern expressed by many owners relates to the chemical consumables used for determining residual oxidants in the ballast water. Proper storage and handling is critical to the operation of systems employing total residual oxidant (TRO). Another major takeaway from the workshop was the importance and necessity of maintaining an effective training strategy to ensure crew members can operate these systems properly and safely. Improved training methods and system manuals will decrease the number of issues that stem from operational errors.
Founded in 1862, ABS is a leading international classification organization devoted to promoting the security of life and property and preserving the natural environment through the development and verification of standards for the design, construction and operational maintenance of marine and offshore assets.