New guidance to help marine and offshore operators reduce the transmission of disease has been launched alongside the industry’s first infectious disease mitigation notation.


The ABS guide addresses physical arrangement measures onboard. Photo: Bernd Hildebrandt/ Pixabay

In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, the ABS Guide for Mitigation of Infectious Disease Transmission On Board Marine and Offshore Assets aims to address the question of how the physical arrangement of a marine or offshore asset can act to mitigate transmission of infectious diseases. In an industry first, a new notation indicates compliance with the standards.

“Floating assets are every bit as vulnerable to outbreaks of infectious disease as land-based facilities, as the current pandemic has demonstrated. This new guidance responds to the pressing industry need for strategies to mitigate the transmission of infectious diseases, including COVID-19 and a range of other hazards,” said Gareth Burton, ABS vice president, global technology. “The notation breaks new ground for the industry, allowing operators and owners to clearly demonstrate that the risks of infectious outbreaks have been considered.”

The IDM-A (Infectious Disease Mitigation-Arrangements) notation is offered to vessels that meet the arrangement requirements addressing the configuration of spaces which can be used for the isolation and segregation of crew, passengers and onshore visitors, as well as the ventilation and interior surfaces of certain accommodation or working spaces.

The guide follows guidance on cleaning and disinfecting marine and offshore assets exposed to COVID-19, published by ABS in April.

By Rebecca Jeffrey