PVI to take part in ISO 28000/28007 pilot scheme

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protection[1]Private maritime security company Protection Vessels International (PVI) and Lloyd’s Register Quality Assurance (LRQA) have announced that an agreement has been entered into for PVI to take part in the ISO 28000/28007 pilot scheme. 

The scheme is due to start in the next few weeks and will include an initial assessment of the PVI ISO28000 and ISO28007 PAS management systems.

PVI has taken a lead role in promoting regulation and high standards within the maritime security industry since its inception in early 2009 and is keen to continue its business relationship with LRQA since its successful certification to the quality management system standard, ISO 9001-in 2012.

Leading global management system certifier, LRQA, as a subsidiary of Lloyd’s Register Group Limited, clearly has strong foundations in the Maritime industry.

In initial discussions between PVI and LRQA regarding the ISO/PAS 28007 pilot scheme the companies agreed the importance of promoting the correct route to certification; that being through the ISO28000 ‘Security Management Systems for the Supply Chain’ base standard taken together with requirements of ISO PAS 28007 which should be conducted by a certification body accredited by UKAS.

“This method of certification is also being actively promoted by the Security in Complex Environments Group (SCEG), which is partnered with the UK government for the development and implementation of standards for the UK Private Security Companies operating in complex environments, both on land and at sea” said Paul Gibson, Director, SCEG.

“We are delighted to be one of the first certification bodies to participate in the UKAS pilot programme for accredited ISO/PAS 28007. Thanks to our strong maritime credentials, LRQA is well placed to work across stream to offer clients the opportunity to become early adopters of this new maritime security standard whilst also delivering against our stated mission of enhancing the safety of life and property at sea,” said David Derrick, LRQA UK Business Centre Manager.

The United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS) is the sole national body recognised by government to assess evaluating organisations, such as certification bodies, against international standards. UKAS has been appointed to assess companies offering certification to ISO/PAS 28007, verifying that they are using competent assessors with the correct qualifications and that rigorous, tested auditing processes are followed.

The importance of thorough and independent assessment against recognised standards (UKAS accreditation) is key to the confidence of the shipping market.  It is vital that standards of auditing are not undermined and that private maritime security companies (PMSCs) are not tempted to become certified by a non internationally accredited certification body.  It is understood there are currently a number of certification bodies who have expressed an interest in being approved by UKAS.

UKAS will begin assessment of the certification bodies’ in June and aims to complete the pilot project by the end of the year. This will allow appropriate time for those certification bodies taking part to train its auditors to the rigorous requirements demanded by ISO/PAS 28007.  In the meantime, during pilot schemes, ship owners can continue to work with the ISO/PAS 28007 document as guidelines to independently assess the competency of PMSCs.  Concurrently PMSCs can continue their good work with pilot scheme certification bodies ensuring that the systems they have put in place are robust until official UKAS accredited status is granted.

PVI CEO Barry Roche added: “We recognise the importance of the new ISO and welcome its introduction, it will however only be recognised by the shipping industry if undertaken by quality auditors with bodies such as UKAS behind them.”