A training program for seafarers responsible for liquefied natural gas (LNG) and other low-flashpoint fuels on board NYK Group-operated ships has been accredited by Nippon Kaiji Kyokai (Class NK), making NYK the first Japanese shipping company to obtain an international institution’s certification in the field of IGF Code training, the company said in its release.
The use of natural gas as fuel, particularly LNG, has increased in recent years to prevent pollution, and it is said that more than 200 LNG-fuelled ships, including those on order, are currently part of the industry.
To enhance safety and minimize the risk of the rising number of LNG-fuelled ships, the International Code of Safety for Ships Using Gases or Other Low-flashpoint Fuels (IGF Code) has been adopted by the International Maritime Organization (IMO) and requires seafarers to receive training certificated by a maritime institution in their own country or the flag state.
Compared with Europe, a training system had not developed in Asia, and thus seafarers from the Philippines and India, which make up the majority of seafarers in the industry, struggled to meet the IGF Code requirement.
In accordance with its medium-term management plan “Staying Ahead 2022 with Digitalization and Green,” NYK aims to proactively introduce environment-friendly ships, including those fuelled by LNG. To secure human resources that meet the requirements of the IGF Code, NYK has thus developed its own training program.
Pursuant to regulation of the STCW (Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping) Convention, these courses meet the mandatory requirements for training for service on ships subject to the IGF Code, in accordance with provisions of Section A-V/3, Table A-V/3-1, A-V/3-2, and B-V/3.
Those who have never handled liquefied gas are provided many demonstrations about fighting gas fires and introduced to the characteristics of liquefied gas, the influence of low temperature, and methods to detect gas.
The advanced course allows participants to substitute part of the mandated shipboard experience required for advanced endorsement by the STCW by engaging in two LNG bunkering operations through a simulator.