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By Deborah Ritchie

A new maritime risk rating system has been launched. The International Maritime Risk Rating Agency (IMRRA) was founded with the support of a number of major oil companies in their attempts to unify areas of marine risk assessment and management, making them more transparent and comprehensive. The commercial shipping industry transports more than 90% of the world’s cargo, and with this new system, IMRRA believes it can reflect unprecedented transparency in marine risk.

The new site has gone public with its oil tanker risk rating system, employing numerous major industry databases that are then compiled and refined into one field for further analysis and calculations before being assessed against a Risk Criteria Matrix. Key factors related to tanker safety are pinpointed, assessed and assigned numerical weighting values.

London-based IMRRA provides information on almost every tanker vessel currently operating in the oil shipping industry, allowing direct comparison with aggregated data, industry standards and the average risk calculation to provide an accurate overall score of any given vessel’s risks.

Five international oil majors support IMRRA including LUKOIL Oil Company, Primorsk Oil Terminal, Novorossiysk Commercial Sea Port, Gazprom Neft Trading GmbH, and OTEKO Group (Tamanneftegaz Terminal). These companies have cumulatively shipped over half a billion tons of hydrocarbons per year under the Risk Rating System – with a record of zero spillages and zero accidents.

Chairman of IMRRA, captain Andrey Voloshin said: “Amid growing safety and environmental concerns, effective marine risk management requires a structured, comprehensive and sensible approach to ensure that all industry-related risks have been reduced to appropriate levels.

“Thanks to our diverse knowledge, IMRRA prides itself on providing top level advice to support risk-informed decision making that satisfies the most demanding requirements.

“Our risk rating system is completely unique. We came up with a system based on how risk rating was calculated in the financial market. We created a mathematical model which has never been done before in the industry – you won’t find it anywhere else. It’s this model that calculates the risk rating, which then goes out to the public in the form of a reliable figure.

“The division of risk factors enables our users to weigh and emphasise the factors that are more significant for the business and identify the key ‘driving’ factors that are controlling the result.”

He added: “Our objective is to establish an industry standard that promotes better global shipping practices, places health and safety and regulatory peace-of-mind at the top of the agenda, while raising environmental expectations.

“The accumulated knowledge of oil majors’ and oil terminals’ marine experience and risk-based control methods may be effectively applied to other marine sectors such as bulk and container shipping. We see great future potential in the development of this significant store of data.”

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