Societies report increased use of remote surveys

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Use of remote surveys by classification societies is growing and being extended. This week ABS announced it is is expanding its remote survey options for vessel owners and extending its remote survey and audit services for equipment and materials manufacturers and other key service provider firms.

“As organisations rely more heavily on remote and virtual operations, ABS is making it easier for vessel owners and equipment manufacturers to leverage digital applications by offering even more remote surveys and audit options,” said Christopher J Wiernicki, ABS Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer.

ABS has expanded its remote offerings to include Drydocking Extensions and Radio Renewals and will offer additional remote services in the near future. Additionally, it has extended its remote survey and audit services to existing equipment manufacturing and external specialist clients enrolled in ABS programs in the United States, South America and Europe.

Powered by advances in remote technology, remote surveys and audits augment the traditional survey experience by allowing surveyors to perform a range of actions without being physically present while simultaneously capturing all survey and audit requirements. Access to remote surveys and audits allows for business continuity, particularly during challenging times that may create scheduling conflicts, personnel or logistical issues such as the current COVID-19 period. ABS has created an easy five-step process to simplify the scheduling and delivery of remote survey and audit requests.

Meanwhile, DNV GL which introduced remote surveys in October 2018 has announced that since then more than 15,000 surveys have been completed remotely.

The organisation said that the impact of the global COVID-19 crisis has reinforced the value of itsremote survey services. With some 15,000 surveys and inspections undertaken since the launch in October 2018, customers.

“In these challenging times we are seeing the benefits of the full scope of digitalisation initiatives that we have been building up over the past few years,” says Knut Ørbeck-Nilssen, CEO, DNV GL – Maritime. “The use of remote surveys has meant that we have been able to limit disruptions to customer operations resulting from travel bans or quarantines involving our surveyors. Ship operators are able to receive immediately updated and verified electronic certificates, which make their business dealing with class, authorities and vendors much more efficient. This has all been backed by expert teams in the regions and through our DATE hubs, which cover technical and survey requests around the globe 24/7 and have solved 500,000 cases since the launch of the service five years ago.”

Remote surveys were first rolled out by DNV GL in October of 2018 and have been gaining in popularity ever since. In 2019, for some survey types, up to 25% of all surveys were conducted remotely, with more than one third of customers having utilised the service at least once.

Customers are able to request remote surveys around the clock, independent of port calls, location, and time zone. Remote surveys are being offered both through DNV GL’s global DATE (Direct Access to Technical Experts) service, delivered through expert teams from Høvik, Singapore, Hamburg, Houston and Piraeus, and via regional offices.

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