Increased findings expected with new SIRE 2.0 inspection regime, warns Kaiko Systems

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As the new SIRE 2.0 inspection regime prepares for its official launch in the third quarter of 2024, the tanker industry is bracing for significant change. The updated digitised programme is expected to increase the number of inspection findings, even for companies with historically strong performance, according to Fabian Fussek (pictured), Co-Founder and CEO of mobile-first ship inspection technology pioneer Kaiko Systems.

SIRE 2.0 places a much greater emphasis on Human Factors, acknowledging that their performance and knowledge are crucial for the overall efficiency and safety of vessels, undertaking critical tasks, operations, and maintenance, as well as identifying and responding to issues.

However, seafarers’ ability to perform these duties can be compromised if equipment is faulty, procedures are ineffective, or conditions hinder their work. SIRE 2.0 addresses these human factors, providing ships with the opportunity to enhance the reliability and effectiveness of the tasks crucial for safeguarding the vessel.

It is the first major update from OCIMF (Oil Companies International Marine Forum) since the original Ship Inspection Report (SIRE) programme’s inception in 1993 and has been undertaken to reflect the industry’s evolving standards and practices.

Currently, inspections typically reveal two to four issues per ship, with five or six findings already causing concern among charterers. Under SIRE 2.0, Mr Fussek warns that inspectors may identify as many as 20 to 30 findings per vessel and while this may become the new norm, it will require careful discussion and adaptation within the industry.

“With crews and shore teams possibly unprepared for the new standards, the number of findings is expected to rise significantly, potentially tripling, due to human factors.

“We foresee several companies in the tanker industry facing unexpected challenges as SIRE 2.0 becomes fully operational. While not everyone will be impacted, some may find it difficult to uphold their previously excellent performance records.”

Though many of Kaiko Systems’ customers are very much aware of SIRE 2.0, having prepared for years with robust crew training and advanced tools, Mr Fussek believes not all operators in the industry are equally prepared. Smaller and medium-sized companies exhibit a wide spectrum of readiness, with some overconfident in their past SIRE performance and this disparity may lead to unexpected challenges.

“When SIRE 2.0 goes fully live, we believe some operators will not be able to maintain their previous track records of excellent performance,” adds Mr Fussek.

The complexity of SIRE 2.0 is underscored by its extensive 1,600-page question library, designed to be relevant to different seafarer ranks. Inspections will now include direct questions for junior officers and ratings, not just senior officers, aiming to ensure comprehensive knowledge and preparedness across all ranks.

Kaiko Systems’ new digital, mobile-first inspection process standardises the questionnaire, guiding inspectors through the vetting procedure with a core set of questions. It has integrated the question library into a self-assessment programme with personalised questions for each rank. Vetting teams also receive a dynamic gap analysis on their SIRE 2.0 readiness, meaning enabling them to provide targeted support where it is needed most. The solution provides real-time insights into fleet conditions, identifies potential risks, and facilitates informed decision-making for ship managers and crew members. Feedback from seafarers has so far been overwhelmingly positive.

And with more than 24,000 SIRE inspections conducted last year, the impact of the new inspection regime will be closely watched.

“We believe there is a big risk but it is manageable with the right approach,” concludes Mr Fussek.

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