I haven’t come across the CENTER FOR TANKSHIP EXCELLENCE before but it seems worth a browse. Prehaps worthy of discussion is it’s raison d’etre:
“The oil tanker industry has lost its way. The twin pillars of tanker industry regulation had been:
- The technical leadership of the major oil company marine departments.
- The professionalism of the Classification Societies.
These pillars have crumbled. The oil company marine departments were gutted in the wake of the massive economic losses in the tanker market in the late 1970’s and early 1980’s. The economic pressures on the marine departments were heavy contributors to the Amoco Cadiz and Exxon Valdez spills among others. At that time the marine departments lost credibility with and influence on their boards. The talent and experience that was not fired was allowed to resign without replacement. The only real centers for quality tanker design and research disappeared. The Classification Society system was always deeply flawed, combining as it did dependence on the regulatee for fee income and potential competition among the Societies for that income. However, a combination of a strong tendency among the owners to stick with their national classification society and, in the best societies, a long tradition of technical professionalism managed to keep the class rules at a slowly declining but still marginally satisfactory level through the mid 1970’s. Since then the combination of inter-class competition and the ability of the ship yards to rewrite the rules via the down-ratchet has resulted in a further decline in the class rules to imprudent levels.”
An interesting point of view, what do you think?