What is PCSOPEP?
The Panama Canal Shipboard Oil Pollution Emergency Plan (PCSOPEP) is a program that seeks to implement emergency preparedness strategies for Panama Canal waters. The PCSOPEP services aids the Panama Canal Authority (ACP) in minimizing consequences of oil pollution and emergencies by safeguarding life, reducing the impact on the environment, and ensuring the continuous operation of the panama canal.
Vessels have the responsibility to comply with the oil polution regulations of PCSOPEP services and, in the event of a oil polution, shall activate its own plan and notify the ACP canal authority, as stated in the Regulation on Navigation in Panama Canal Waters, Chapter IX, Section Four, following the oil pollution regulations developed here in by the ACP canal authority. However, all efforts shall be in accordance with Article 10 of the oil pollution regulations on Navigation in Panama Canal waters.
It’s mandatory for the vessel Owners matching the requirements to submit a PCSOPEP services to ACP for review and approval work.
The International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) has advised to submit a model PCSOPEP services Addendum for ACP’s approval. If it is approved, the model plan may be used by the owners to help them in writing the plan in-house. The ICS will advise its members after the completion of the work.
Authorized Person (AP)
The ACP has given more information on the role of a Authorised Person in its latest Advisory (N12-2014), stating that the Authorised person should act as liaison between the ACP and the vessel and it’s owners in order to provide the provision of a guarantee approved by the ACP, for the charge of cleanup and response following an oil spill.
The ACP has also clarified that the ship’s agent can perform the role of an AP(Authorised Person). As your trusted ship agent Adimar Shipping, Inc. performs PCSOPEP services for a very reasonable price.
Oil Spill Preparedness Program
The Panama Canal Authority (ACP) has established a preparedness program for oil spill emergencies in Panama Canal waters. In the response sequence to an oil spill, the activation of the PCSOPEP is the responsibility of the vessel. Besides internal actions taken by the vessel, the ACP will respond in accordance with its contingency plan.
The ACP preparedness program establishes an initial response time of six hours, which includes: the time for notification and mobilization of personnel, the time for transportation of personnel and resources to any spill location within the response area, the time for deployment of resources, and the time for start-up of operation.
the ACP will not charge rates for the use of emergency response equipment available under the PCSOPEP program. However, the ACP will assess and charge other expenses of the response and cleanup activities.