Third Party Organization News

21 Jan 2019

Safety Management Systems: A Good fit for Passenger Vessels?

Captain Lee Boone is the Chief of the U.S. Coast Guard’s Office of Investigations & Casualty Analysis

The evidence and industry subject matter experts both say ‘yes.’In its recently released SAFER SEAS DIGEST, Lessons Learned from Marine Accident Investigations (2017), the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) reports investigating numerous accidents across all modes of transportation where a properly implemented safety management system (SMS) could have prevented injuries, loss of life, or material damage. That document spans analysis of casualties across the full spectrum of all manners of marine craft…

27 Dec 2018

Third Party Oversight

File Image: the El Faro's VDR as it looked installed on the vessel.

... one year after the commandant’s Final Action Memo on the El Faro sinking.“… the Coast Guard is ultimately responsible to monitor the performance of third parties that perform delegated functions and also to guarantee the effectiveness of vessel inspections and surveys. Yet the Coast Guard failed to adequately oversee the third party in this case, and the investigation reveals that the Coast Guard has not sustained the proficiency and policy framework to do so in general. The…

06 Dec 2018

The Top 10 Maritime Stories for 2018

The M/V Steve Golding transits  through the Olmsted Locks in late July. Called by some stakeholders, 'the Manhatten Project' of civil engineering, Olmsted is finally completed at an enormous cost. (CREDIT: USACE)

Choosing the ‘top stories of 2018’ was, this year, a difficult task. Many compelling story threads played out, dramatically impacting the North American waterfront, and in particular, the workboat sector – each in their own unique way. Read on to find out how and why.Autonomous Vessels: Ready or Not, Here They ComeFuturistic, remote-controlled autonomous marine vehicles aren’t coming. They are here. As the pace of change quickens, autonomous vessels are already providing service and value on the water.

04 Dec 2018

Arlen "Benny" Cenac Jr.: Navigating a Different Course Line, Making a Difference

Arlen “Benny” Cenac Jr.

Cenac Marine Services and its dynamic, third generation leader, Arlen “Benny” Cenac Jr., continue to flourish, in good times and bad. Through it all, leadership, philanthropy and investments that extend far beyond the company’s gates have made all the difference.As this year quickly churns to its inevitable close, Cenac Marine Services isn’t the nation’s biggest towboat operation, but its profound impact on the people and environment of the U.S. Gulf Coast and beyond is unquestionable.

27 Sep 2018

Subchapter M Casts Off

Image Credit: Vane Brothers

Initial reports show that the towing industry is adjusting well to the new normal on inland rivers. In fact, it is business as usual for most.July 20, 2018 was a critical date for tow boat operators. That was the deadline for all U.S.-flag towing vessels – over 26 feet, or less if used to assist with transport of oil or hazardous materials – to be in compliance with Subchapter M, the U.S. Coast Guard’s towing vessel safety regulations. It’s been a long time coming. As a regulatory program…

21 Sep 2018

NOSAC Meeting Highlights

Representatives from the Coast Guard, offshore oil and gas industries, recognized organizations and numerous industry associations attended the National Offshore Safety Advisory Committee semi-annual public meeting in Houston, Texas Sept 11, 2018.Rear Adm. John Nadeau, assistant commandant for prevention policy, attended the meeting and discussed with the Committee the new Coast Guard commandant’s strategic vision for the service as well as the reorganization within the Office of Commercial Vessel Compliance to put an increased emphasis on Third Party Organization oversight.During the meeting…

24 Jul 2018

SPECIAL REPORT: GREAT LAKES BUSINESS and The Great Lakes Group

Joe Starck, Great Lakes Group President

Embracing and spanning the full breadth of Great Lakes geography and business mix, GLG’s Joe Starck has his multi-missioned firm looking to the future – in more ways than one.The Great Lakes Group (GLG) takes its beginnings from its 1899 incorporation by industrial icon John D. Rockefeller, who formed the Great Lakes Towing to satisfy the demands of a Midwest industrial revolution that brought bigger ships to the region. Existing vessels, unable to keep up with demand, were supplemented and replaced by a fleet of as many as 100 tugboats; the first steel tugs in the region.

03 Jul 2018

USCG Issues Advice for Collecting Information for SubM COI's

File Image: CREDIT Port of Portland, OR

As of June 25, 2018, the Coast Guard has issued 22 certificates of inspection (COI) to towing vessels in both the Atlantic and Pacific areas of operation. Additional inspections are scheduled between now and July 20, 2018, when Subchapter M is fully implemented. The requirements for obtaining a certificate of inspection, as detailed in 46 CFR 136.210, begin when the owner/operator submits the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) approved Form CG-3752 “Application for Inspection.” New construction vessels use Form CG-3752A.

02 May 2018

Last-minute Tips for Subchapter M

Credit: Eric Norcross

Countdown to Subchapter M: Last-minute tips for choosing the USCG or TPO/TSMS option ...Subchapter M will finally be implemented in the tugboat and towing industry in only a few short months. It has taken over ten years to arrive, but the build-up and in some cases, hysteria, can only be compared to the Y2K scare at the end of 1999. During that period, the world said Y2K would cause computer crashes, commerce to end and daily life to come to a crashing halt.Now, fast forward almost twenty years and enter Subchapter M.

20 Apr 2018

First COI Issued Under Subchapter M

Pictured left to right: USCG Chief Warrant Officer Joel Reid; Marine Towing of Tampa ISM & Safety Coordinator, Capt. Scott Moorhead; and USCG Chief Warrant Officer Sean Goodman (Photo: Marine Towing of Tampa)

The U.S. Coast Guard has issued its very first certificate of inspection (COI) under the Subchapter M requirements, which set new rules for the inspection, standards and safety policies of towing vessels.The COI issued to Marine Towing of Tampa's 90-foot tug Endeavor was signed Wednesday by Capt. Holly Najarian, commander of Sector St. Petersburg, Fla., and was presented Thursday morning at the company’s corporate office in Tampa, Fla.The 4,200-horsepower Endeavor, built in 2000 in Lockport…

07 Feb 2018

USCG Approves Meridian Global Consulting as TPO

© Ernest Prim / Adobe Stock

The Towing Vessel National Center of Expertise (TVNCOE) posted on its website February 2, 2018, that the U.S. Coast Guard has approved Meridian Global Consulting, LLC as a third-party organization (TPO) to carry out certain functions in accordance with Subchapter M. The current list of all Subchapter M approved TPOs is maintained on TVNCOE’s TPO webpage. In accordance with 46 CFR 139.110, classification societies that are recognized and/or authorized meet the requirements of a TPO.

31 Jan 2018

Subchapter M: Top 5 Moves to Make Now

© Chuck Ramsay / Adobe Stock

In 2004 Congress reclassified towing vessels as vessels subject to inspection. Thus began a lengthy process of regulation drafting by the U.S. Coast Guard, with a great deal of input from the towing industry. In 2011, the Notice of Proposed Rule Making was published giving the public its first look at what has become known as Subchapter M. Over 3,000 comments were received by the Coast Guard on the Proposed Rule. After five years of responding to those comments and revamping Subchapter M, on June 20, 2016 the Final Rule was published.

13 Dec 2017

Cenac Marine Awards SubM TPO Contract to ABS

(Photo: Cenac Marine)

ABS said it was awarded a Third-Party Organization (TPO) contract by Cenac Marine Services, owner and operator of a fleet of inland and offshore vessels, to support compliance with U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) Subchapter M requirements. The contract establishes ABS as Cenac’s sole TPO, providing oversight of their Internal Survey program and additional support with ABS surveyors when required. “Tugboat owners and operators are urgently seeking and evaluating options for Subchapter M compliance,” said ABS Americas Division President, Jamie Smith.

27 Sep 2017

Ivy Marine Obtains Sub M TSMS Certificate

l to r: Pat Folan (TBS), Donny Cranfill (MARCOM), Steve Wilson (Ivy), Erin Pugh (TBS), Marcus Carlucci (TBS), Patrick Boles (Ivy) and Ed Marrufo (MARCOM) (Photo: Ivy Marine)

Ivy Marine, LLC, a two-towboat company out of Mobile, AL has become one of the first companies in the United States to obtain their TSMS Certificate. They are also the smallest company in the country to have obtained this certification. “Ivy Marine partnered with Tug & Barge Solutions to develop a Towing Safety Management System (TSMS) that meets Subchapter M and the AWO RCP standard,” said Steve Wilson, Ivy Marine’s President. Ivy Marine, LLC also installed HelmCONNECT on its vessels which has helped them obtain their TSMS Certificate.

04 Aug 2017

Tech File: NS Workboat

(Image: ABS)

ABS mobile application is purpose-built for the workboat, inland sectors. ABS Nautical Systems, the ABS enterprise fleet management software suite, has launched a new mobile application, NS Workboat. The latest in a line of new tools that ABS has developed to help workboat operators gain compliance with the pending Subchapter M regulations, the ‘app’, which leverages the Nautical Systems enterprise software, is a mobile solution that is purpose-built for the workboat and inland-shipping sectors, where ease of use is of paramount importance.

21 Jul 2017

A Significant Date for Subchapter M

© hildeanna / Adobe Stock

July 20 marks a milestone in Subchapter M implementation. Towing vessels with keels laid or major conversions on or after July 20, 2017 are required to meet 46 CFR Subchapter M and obtain a Certificate of Inspection (COI) prior to operating. Additionally, starting July 20, 2018, a portion of existing towing vessels will have one year to meet all of Subchapter M and obtain COIs. By July 19, 2022, 100 percent of the towing vessels must have valid COIs on board. Owners or managing…

07 Jul 2017

TVIB Issues Its First TSMS Certificate to Crounse

On June 23, 2017, Towing Vessel Inspection Bureau (TVIB) issued its first Towing Safety Management System (TSMS) certificate to Crounse Corporation, who successfully completed a full Subchapter M TSMS audit including a review of its operations for compliance with Subchapter M. Crounse is the first of a number of companies that have chosen TVIB as their U.S. Coast Guard Approved Third-Party Organization (TPO) for Subchapter M compliance. TVIB said it is working with a number of TPO customers to take advantage of the recent Coast Guard policy letter CG-CVC Policy Letter 17-02 and the AWO Alert issued on June 8, that provided guidance on how a company can use its previous RCP Management Audit toward the issuance of its initial TSMS Certificate.

27 Jun 2017

Cooper Group Selects ABS for Sub M Services

© Cooper / T. Smith

ABS said it has been awarded a Third Party Organization (TPO) contract by the Cooper Group of Companies to support compliance with U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) Subchapter M requirements. “ABS anticipated the needs that would surface when the Subchapter M regulations were published and allocated resources to develop a range of solutions,” said ABS Americas Division President, Jamie Smith. The newly signed contract establishes ABS as the exclusive Subchapter M TPO for Cooper Group and its subsidiaries, Crescent Towing, Cooper Marine & Timberlands and Plimsoll Towing.

09 Jun 2017

Foss Enlists ABS for Sub M Compliance Service

(Photo: Foss Maritime)

Seattle based Foss Maritime, owner and operator of a fleet of tugs offering maritime transportation and logistics services, has awarded a contract to classification society ABS to support compliance with U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) Subchapter M requirements. The contract positions ABS as Foss’ Third Party Organization (TPO), providing a complete suite of Subchapter M services, including TPO surveys, International Safety Management (ISM) compliance, Load Line compliance and audits of its Responsible Carrier Program (RCP).

22 May 2017

Subchapter M Survey Reports

© Adam Parent / Adobe Stock

The advent of the subchapter M towboat rules – even though the bulk of the rules don’t come into effect until July of 2018 – requires a close look at your equipment. How you go about that important task will make all the difference. Towing vessels should be surveyed for Subchapter M regulatory compliance, regardless of the compliance option chosen, so companies can budget and plan for upgrades between now and July of 2018. If a company is being proactive and strategic about Subchapter M, the time to start getting vessels surveyed for regulatory compliance is now.

10 May 2017

AWO Approves LR as Third-Party RCP Auditor

© Jim Pintar / Adobe Stock

Lloyd's Register has received approval from the American Waterways Operators (AWO) as a third-party organization authorized to conduct audits of AWO member operations as part of its Responsible Carrier Program (RCP). The RCP is a safety management system that provides a framework for the U.S. tugboat, towboat and barge industry to continuously improve safety and environmental performance. In order to be in compliance with the RCP – a condition of AWO membership – member companies must undergo recurring management and vessel audits by an approved independent third-party entity.

21 Apr 2017

ABS Wins Great Lakes Towing SubM Contract

Photo: Great Lakes Towing Company

ABS said it has been awarded a Third Party Organization (TPO) contract by The Great Lakes Towing Company (GLT) to support compliance with the United States Coast Guard (USCG) Subchapter M regulations. “Every organization operating towing vessels in U.S. inland waterways will have to comply with Subchapter M,” said ABS Americas Division President Jamie Smith. The recently signed contract with GLT, which is a member of the American Waterways Operators (AWO), establishes ABS as the company’s TPO, providing surveys for its fleet and audits of its Responsible Carrier Program (RCP).

05 Apr 2017

ABS Broadens Type Approval Coverage for SubM

Joshua LaVire (Photo: ABS)

ABS, a leading provider of classification and technical services to the marine and offshore industries, has expanded its Type Approval product certification process to allow original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) to meet compliance with 46 CFR Subchapter M Regulations. “As the inland maritime industry begins preparing for Subchapter M compliance, owners and yards are looking for easy ways to find equipment that meets Subchapter M requirements,” says ABS Americas Division President Jamie Smith.

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