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Special Operations


It is recommended that cranes on offshore

platforms, rigs, vessels, or any other facility, which
could interfere with helicopter operations (including
approach/departure paths):


Be equipped with a red rotating beacon

or red high intensity strobe light connected to the
system powering the crane, indicating the crane is
under power;


Be designed to allow the operator a

maximum view of the helideck area and should be
equipped with wide

angle mirrors to eliminate blind

spots; and


Have their boom tips, headache balls,

and hooks painted with high visibility international

d. Helicopter/Tanker Operations

1. Background.

The interface of helicopters

and tankers during shipboard helicopter operations is
complex and may be hazardous unless appropriate
procedures are coordinated among all parties. The
following recommended practices are designed to
minimize risks during helicopter/tanker operations:

2. Recommended Practices


Management, flight operations personnel,

and pilots should be familiar with and apply the
operating safety standards set forth in “Guide to
Helicopter/Ship Operations”, International Chamber
of Shipping, Third Edition, 5

89 (as amended),

establishing operational guidelines/standards and
safe practices sufficient to safeguard helicopter/tank-
er operations.


Appropriate plans, approvals, and com-

munications must be accomplished prior to reaching
the vessel, allowing tanker crews sufficient time to
perform required safety preparations and position
crew members to receive or dispatch a helicopter


Appropriate approvals and direct commu-

nications with the bridge of the tanker must be
maintained throughout all helicopter/tanker opera-


Helicopter/tanker operations, including

landings/departures, must not be conducted until the
helicopter pilot


command has received and

acknowledged permission from the bridge of the


Helicopter/tanker operations must not be

conducted during product/cargo transfer.


Generally, permission will not be granted

to land on tankers during mooring operations or while
maneuvering alongside another tanker.

e. Helideck/Heliport Operational Hazard

Warning(s) Procedures

1. Background


A number of operational hazards can

develop on or near offshore helidecks or onshore
heliports that can be minimized through procedures
for proper notification or visual warning to pilots.
Examples of hazards include but are not limited to:


Perforating operations: subpara-

graph f.




S gas presence: subparagraph g.


Gas venting: subparagraph h; or,


Closed helidecks or heliports: sub

paragraph i (unspecified cause).


These and other operational hazards are

currently minimized through timely dissemination of
a written Notice to Airmen (NOTAM) for pilots by
helicopter companies and operators. A NOTAM
provides a written description of the hazard, time and
duration of occurrence, and other pertinent informa-
tion. ANY POTENTIAL HAZARD should be
communicated to helicopter operators or company
aviation departments as early as possible to allow the
NOTAM to be activated.


To supplement the existing NOTAM

procedure and further assist in reducing these
hazards, a standardized visual signal(s) on the
helideck/heliport will provide a positive indication to
an approaching helicopter of the status of the landing
area. Recommended Practice(s) have been developed
to reinforce the NOTAM procedures and standardize
visual signals.

f. Drilling Rig Perforating Operations:

Helideck/Heliport Operational Hazard

1. Background.

A critical step in the oil well

completion process is perforation, which involves the
use of explosive charges in the drill pipe to open the
pipe to oil or gas deposits. Explosive charges used in
conjunction with perforation operations offshore can
potentially be prematurely detonated by radio