What's at Stake
Are you at risk of unlimited liability under OPA 90? Ship owners relying on vessels of opportunity for their Salvage and Marine Fire Fighting response to offshore incidents do not comply with the Clean Water Act or the Salvage and Marine Fire – Fighting Regulations.  In the event of a spill, the vessel owner may be found in violation of an operating regulation of the USCG, and subject to unlimited liability, despite having a USCG-approved vessel response plan.
Your Challenges. Our Solutions
Below are questions you should be asking to mitigate risk in your vessel response plan to ensure a compliant response for first responder services with SMFF regulations.

Are the response vessels listed in the Geographic-Specific Appendix (GSA) for each COTP zone contractually-obligated to respond at the time of an incident?

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All of our response vessels in the continental U.S. are contractually bound to respond immediately and we’ll show you the contracts that say so. It’s your legal and fiduciary responsibility to ensure by contract that the resources are available to respond.

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Since every minute counts when an incident occurs offshore with lives and the environment at risk, in what state of readiness are your response resources, equipment and personnel?

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We have planned and tested that all of our response vessels are maintained and operational 24/7, can be refueled within the hour, and built for fast response with an average cruising speed of 20 knots. All of our boat operators are properly licensed with offshore mariner licenses and have years of experience who work 24/7 in all types of weather and sea state conditions year-round.

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Have you reviewed the contracts and subcontracts to ensure there are established, agreed upon fees, terms and conditions for your response resources in the event of an offshore incident?

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We provide simple clear understanding of fees for services and responsibilities in our contracts so you won’t be overcharged by being caught off guard negotiating in the 11th hour. 

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Complimentary Evaluation
If you answered NO to any of the above questions, then you may be held liable for unlimited liability in the event of an offshore incident. We’d like to help you mitigate your risk, so contact us for a complimentary evaluation of your Vessel Response Plan.
The ROR Response Network
We've Got You Covered
ROR's network will seamlessly supplement a vessel's existing Vessel Response Plan (VRP) by providing contractually-obligated response resources in each COTP zone covering the entire continental US coastlines, capable of delivering the surveyor, fire team, and firefighting equipment to ensure the fastest response.
Is your vessel response plan disaster proof?
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The Future of Marine Firefighting
and Emergency Response...
Built for Operating Offshore
Built for Real time communications and navigation
Built for Firefighting
Built for Speed
The overarching conclusion of the Panel is that marine firefighting efforts cannot be properly planned for within the allotted timeframes spelled out in the salvage and marine firefighting regulations, particularly in longer distance responses both nearshore and offshore. The Panel concludes that neither the intent, nor the regulatory mandates of the SMFF regulations are being met due to a lack of effective verification methodology and effort by the Coast Guard, response resource providers, and vessel owners and operators.
- USCG Retired Admirals Brian Salerno, Joel Whitehead, Roy Nash and Retired Captains, attorneys Laticia Argenti and David Nichols
Vessel owners/operators should only list resource providers in their VRPs that have been arranged by contract or other approved means. This includes resources incorporated by reference, such as the primary SMFF providers pre-evaluated/approved for each GSA, and the subcontracts that support them. The VO/O is still responsible for ensuring that all contracts and agreements between the primary service provider they choose and the sub-contracted entities owning resources meet the planning requirements for their VRPs. Statements such as “if available” do not imply commitment and do not support the intent of the regulations.
- Coast Guard Maritime Commons blog posted Thursday, November 15, 2018
If the requirement that owners or operators of covered vessels are to ensure by contract or other arrangement a prompt and adequate response to critical events threatening the discharge of oil or other hazardous materials and otherwise threatening life or property on the affected vessel or elsewhere, ‘contracts’ that only promise to respond when the resources are available are not appropriate. Such ‘contracts’ are classic examples of illusory promises, or if you prefer letters of intent. And illusory promises, including letters of intent, are not contracts at all.
- Joseph W. Dellapenna, Attorney-at-Law and Retired Professor of Law at Villanova University School of Law
The violation of a federal safety regulation can expose, and has exposed, vessel operators to unlimited liability under OPA ’90. Failure of vessel owners to “ensure” an adequate response to on-board fires, as required by the regulation, threatens them, and their insurers, with unlimited liability.
- Jonathan Gutoff, Professor of Law at Roger Williams University School of Law
Is your vessel response plan disaster proof?
Let us tell you, for free

Rapid Ocean Response Corporation
360 Concord Street
Suite 103
Charleston, SC 29401

Office Telephone:
(855) 777 – RORC (7672)

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