NWA Launches Revised Workboat Code

The UK National Workboat Association (NWA) has launched the second edition of the Workboat Code, a document aimed at redefining working practices and standards for vessel operators across a number of maritime sectors.

Acta Marine (Illustration)

Edition 2 of the Workboat Code, developed by an NWA-led working group in cooperation with the Maritime and Coastguard Agency and with workboat operators, includes a number of revisions to industry best practice.

Among a number of changes, the revised code now considers modern vessel applications such as offshore wind crew and equipment transfer, as well as carriage or transfer of dangerous goods.

According to the NWA, these best practice guidelines will validate and confirm the approaches taken by workboat operators working throughout the UK and Europe, setting a standard for safe and effective operations.

“The new Workboat Code has been developed directly with the industry – and it has been highly rewarding to see the level of commitment and enthusiasm UK operators have shown during this time,” said Katy Ware, Director of Maritime Safety for the MCA.

The first edition of the Workboat Code, known as the Brown Code, was published in 1998. Although it played a key role in promoting the initial development of the UK workboat industry, it was not written with the modern workboat fleet in mind, NWA said.

The association also emphasized that the demand for a Code of Practice has grown as a consequence of the increased amount of technical innovation and a wider variety of vessels.

“The revised Workboat Code is a great improvement in regulation and we would like to thank Jenny Vines and the Vessel Policy Branch at the MCA for their tireless efforts in getting this crucial Code of Practice over the line,” said Kerrie Forster, Chair of the National Workboat Association Safety Forum.

“The Code will certainly be instrumental in supporting our thriving industry – and we call on all of our members, and the wider sector, to use it to its full potential as we collectively aim to uphold the highest possible standards of operation.”

Read more about the current workboat-related health and safety practices and drawbacks in the interview OffshoreWIND conducted with Kerrie Forster.