ERRV Validation Trials

In order to ensure "a good prospect" of recovery from the sea in the event that anyone falls in from an installation, is dunked by a falling helicopter or is required to escape to the sea during an emergency, an ERRV is provided at all offshore installations in the North Sea. On occasion the vessel is assigned to more than one installation if they are close together. This capability used to be limited to installations within a five mile radius, but today it is possible for them to be at greater distances from each other, as long as the recovery requirements can be fulfilled.

The accepted practice in order to assess the capability of the ERRVs is to carry out validation trials in at least moderately sheltered waters using a number of floating mannequins which are recovered by the ships FRC or daughter craft, and as a simulation of higher sea states, by the Dacon scoop. The processes are timed and then extrapolated using a computer programme to determine whether the recoveries would have been successful, in all but the most extreme sea states.

The provision of a good prospect of recovery can be complex, as can be seen from the BP "Jigsaw" system, where seventeen conventional standby vessels have been replaced by four extremely large ships each carrying two ARRCs, (Autonomous Rescue and Recovery Craft), plus helicopter support.

Marex can provide consultants to oversee validation trials, and more fundamentally to assist their clients in the provision of the ERRV service, including the selection of suitable vessels.