In another step to enhance the safety of transportation of chemicals by water, the American Waterways Operators (AWO) and the American Chemistry Council
(ACC) recently finalized their joint "Barge Assessment Complement." The Complement is a tool designed to help chemical companies assess the safety and quality performance of barge carriers transporting chemicals
. The Complement is completely voluntary and has been distributed to all AWO liquid carrier members for use as a safety assessment tool. It has also been made available as a safety management tool to all ACC members utilizing barge transportation
. AWO adopted the Responsible Carrier Program (RCP) as a condition of membership in 1998 in an effort to improve the safety of the tugboat, towboat and barge industry. Similarly, in 1988, ACC adopted Responsible Care as an obligation of membership. Like the Responsible Carrier Program, this chemical industry initiative aims to continuously improve health, safety and environmental performance and responsiveness to public concerns about the industry. Recognizing the similarities and purposes of the two programs, the two organizations launched an effort to combine resources and reduce redundancy. In a joint project, ACC and AWO collaborated to refine and update the ACC Barge Assessment Protocol. The result is the ACC-AWO Barge Assessment Complement. The Complement is intended to be used in conjunction with a safety management system, such as ACC's Responsible Care or AWO's Responsible Carrier Program.