Germanischer Lloyd has introduced a File Access Service (FAS), offering permanent storage of specified ship drawings according to USCG requirements for immediate access around the clock. The FAS serves as a valuable tool in fulfilling USCG requirements regarding the "nontank vessel response plan" ("NTVRP"). In case of an emergency, the relevant ship drawings will be available immediately via a hotline system. Compliance with this USCG requirement is documented with a certificate. All ships enrolled in Germanischer Lloyd's Emergency Response Service (ERS) already exceed compliance with this new regulation.
Nontank vessels larger than 400 GT trading to US ports must be equipped with a US Coast Guard approved NTVRP from 8 August 2005 on. This amendment to OPA 90 now includes nontank vessels in the response
planning regime for reaction to the discharge, or the threat of a discharge, of oil from a vessel. The NTVRPs should be submitted to the USCG for examination by July 9, 2005.
The NTVRP is a contingency plan authorizing implementation of removal actions, immediate communication between individuals responsible for response actions, availability of private personnel and equipment necessary to remove worst-case discharge and describe training and equipment. 24-hour access procedures for available shore-based damage stability and residual structural strength calculation data, such as plans and line drawings, must be provided. The availability of these plans will help to evaluate damages and/or to compile a data model for further investigations.