Great Offshore becomes India’s first full member of International Salvage Union
Indian salvage operations gain international endorsement
India has finally got their own internationally recognized and fully established salvage company which can now operate beyond the country’s borders and bid for major contracts all over the world that are open only to members of International Salvage Union. Great Offshore Salvage Services Limited (GOSSL), a wholly owned subsidiary of Great Offshore Limited has qualified as one of the primary Indian professional salvors to become full member of the International Salvage Union (ISU), a feat achieved within first year of its inception.
While the need for having a national salvage company has long been felt by the country and expressed by various administrators and policy makers, the country so far had been relying on importing salvage equipment and resources from overseas, at high cost and time delay. Now the causality response readiness can be significantly enhanced by having resources within the country and improved inter-agency coordination.
Soli Engineer, Director of GOSSL averred that for a salvage company to qualify as a full member of ISU, there are very stringent qualification criteria including experience and expertise to demonstrate competence as "Professional Salvors". “In addition to marine salvage and wreck removal services Great Offshore Salvage is equipped to provide lightering services, marine fire-fighting, shallow and deep water towing and anchor handling, search and rescue, oil spill containment, barge and heavy crane lift operations, air and saturation diving and otheremergency marine response services to the industry,” he stated. “The company has access to Great Offshore's diversified fleet of assets, in-house workshop, repair facility, a floating dry-dock, aviation logistics, in-house Training facility, offices & warehouse in both East & West Coast, providing a gamut of services to the industry.”
Giving details Mr. Engineer informed that their salvage operations are modeled on a unique and custom built DNV certified offshore ship and crane handling simulators, providing their team with one of the most sophisticated training & learning experiences. The Salvage division has assets strategically located around the East and West coasts of India and has successfully completed several complex salvage operations. The company has tie up with renowned International Salvor and domestic contractors wherein it shares technical expertise, assets, equipment and resources.
In today’s environment important policy issues are critical for maintaining an adequate readiness posture. A number of unresolved legislative, regulatory, and policy issues associated with salvage operations needs to be re-visited. The most effective way to prevent damage to the marine environment, when ships run into trouble, is immediate and decisive intervention by marine salvage professionals. In a high proportion of cases ship casualties pose a threat to the marine environment. M V Rak Carrier, a Panama registered vessel is a recent example of the wreck lying 20 nautical miles off the Mumbai coastline, on the seabed, with 60,000 tonnes of coal in cargo holds.
The country needs to have a National "Salvage Response Organization" in place who are qualified, equipped, with base in both East & West coast, can render immediate assistance and response to any potential emergency 24x 7, within the territorial waters. Having demonstrated the expertise to the international community and successfully undertaken major salvage operations, including refloating of M.T.Pavit from Juhu / Versova beach in less than 48 hours, at the behest of the Indian Maritime Administration, GOSSL has set the benchmark for other national companies and provided the country and policy makers with much required indigenous salvage organization.