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Special Operations

(d) It is recommended that cranes on offshore

platforms, rigs, vessels, or any other facility, which

could interfere with helicopter operations (including

approach/departure paths):

(1) 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;

(2) 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

(3) 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

(a) 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.

(b) 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


(c) Appropriate approvals and direct commu-

nications with the bridge of the tanker must be

maintained throughout all helicopter/tanker opera-


(d) Helicopter/tanker operations, including

landings/departures, must not be conducted until the

helicopter pilot−in−command has received and

acknowledged permission from the bridge of the


(e) Helicopter/tanker operations must not be

conducted during product/cargo transfer.

(f) 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) 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:

(1) Perforating operations: subpara-

graph f.

(2) H


S gas presence: subparagraph g.

(3) Gas venting: subparagraph h; or,
(4) Closed helidecks or heliports: sub−

paragraph i (unspecified cause).

(b) 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.

(c) 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