Diving systems have come under the FMEA (Failure Modes and Effects Analysis) spotlight thanks to a new publication from IMCA – the International Marine Contractors Association. This new document, the first ever published to assist in the performance of FMEAs for diving systems, has been produced to offer guidance to owners and operators of diving systems in all aspects of the FMEA process.
The newly published ’FMEA Guide for Diving Systems’ looks at the reasons behind needing a FMEA; selection of a FMEA team; agreement of a structure and scope for the FMEA; collation of relevant documentation; performance of the FMEA; verification and testing; and ongoing maintenance of the process. It offers examples of the typical methodology used in specifying, performing and maintaining a FMEA for diving systems; and examples of good practice to the FMEA practitioners; as well as providing references to other relevant documentation that may assist them in performing analyses.
It’s up to the owner or operator of each diving system to determine if there is a requirement for a FMEA to be in place, both for existing and new diving systems. The very first practical part of the publication addresses the issues that should be assessed when determining whether or not a FMEA should be performed. These include international codes/legislation; classification society rules; industry guidance (e.g. the use of IMCA documentation); or company internal management systems. The FMEA can be used to complement the other risk assessment methods used prior to and during a diving operation.