Regulations for newbuildings
IMO has recently adopted amendments to SOLAS defining a Goal Based Standard (GBS) approach in how the IMO regulations for newbuildings should be developed and verified.
This initial GBS used a deterministic approach which would accommodate the verification of conformity of the current prescriptive IACS Common Structural Rules for Oil Tankers and Bulk Carriers.
The terminology needs to be clearly understood: the IMO GBS rules are a set of “rules for rules”, which means the GBS rules are setting the standards which need to be met by the criteria contained in the rules developed by class or other industry bodies. It should also be noted that the verification of the class rules means an audit for “conformity” (instead of “compliance”) with the standards.
At its 89th session in London 11-20 May, the IMO’s Maritime Safety Committee (MSC 89) has re-generated the process of developing GBS rules for newbuildings based on a Safety Level Approach (SLA). In other words, the GBS SLA set of standards will not be defined in a prescriptive manner, but a set of safety levels will be defined which will be developed by using formal safety assessment (FSA) approaches. So, in the main, the GBS SLA will still be a set of “rules for rules” and the verification will also be an exercise to audit the “conformity” of the rules for new buildings with the GBS SLA-defined standards. The difference is that the GBS SLA rules will be setting standards not only for class regulations but also for the development of future IMO regulations (and maybe a review of the current regulations’ safety levels).
MSC 89 has developed a set of Generic Guidelines to be used in developing the GB SLA set of new rules. Like the current GBS rules, the GBS SLA rules would be comprised of goals (Tier I), functional requirements (Tier II), verification of conformity (Tier III) as well as rules and regulations (Tier IV) and industry practices and standards (Tier V). The GBS SLA will include a section relating to monitoring, namely whether the standards set through the SLA/FSA prove to be sufficient or whether they need changes.
A copy of the Guidelines can be here
Source : INTERTANKO