The AHTS Magne Viking, owned by Viking Supply Ships A/S, is the first vessel to become compliant with the new IMO Polar Code, DNV GL and the Danish Maritime Authority confirmed.
“Having followed the development of the Polar Code for some years, it is a great achievement to finally survey the first vessel to comply with the Code,” says Morten Mejlænder Larsen, responsible for the Arctic and Polar activities in DNV GL Maritime.
Viking Supply Ships opted for an early implementation of the IMO Polar Code and the process has included updates of vessel and equipment as well as providing 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 after 1st 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 going to operate in these areas not covered by other regulations. In addition to shipping along the traditional sea routes, increased shipping to support the oil and gas industry, export of minerals and cruise initiated IMOs work with 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.