Virsec launches lithium-ion safety course

Marina view from above

Maritime security eLearning platform Virsec has launched a new course focused on lithium-ion battery safety awareness for superyachts.

The new course, created in partnership with Seascope France, is available online and designed to standardise safety and mitigate risks within the superyacht industry.

Developed in collaboration with industry experts, the course focuses on training yacht crew, officers, captains and managers to be competent in lithium-ion technology. The curriculum covers preventive measures, fire prevention and emergency response, ensuring a comprehensive understanding of the hazards associated with lithium-ion batteries.

Lithium-ion batteries have been the cause of, and charged with, several notable marine fires in recent years. The escalating incidence has heightened awareness within the maritime and superyacht industry about associated risks and responsibilities. Despite this, a comprehensive training solution to equip crews to address this emerging risk has been lacking.

Virsec says the new course addresses the unique challenges posed by lithium-ion batteries, ensuring crew are well-equipped to handle and mitigate potential risks effectively.

Under ISM 6.3 and 6.5, Designated Persons Ashore (DPA), yacht managers and captains bear the responsibility to ensure that crew members possess the necessary knowledge to identify abused, suspect, or hazardous batteries.

The course is compliant with these ISM Code obligations, addressing training requirements as outlined in ISM 6.5 and 6.3. The course also focuses on operational efficiency, equipping crew with the knowledge to troubleshoot and resolve issues related to lithium-ion batteries promptly, minimising downtime and optimising vessel performance.

Insurance underwriters may reject claims about fires involving lithium-ion batteries, particularly when improper charging, handling, or storage is suspected.

In June 2022, MIN advised boat owners to check their policies and speak to their insurance brokers, especially if they’re thinking of retrofitting Lithium-ion powered engines.

Virsec says the new course addresses this concern by ensuring crew are well-trained in preventing and responding to battery-related emergencies.

The course brochure is currently available as a PDF on the VIRSEC website.

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