NOVEMBER 4, 2013 — On board armed security teams have proven to be a very effective deterrent to pirate attacks. Now it's getting somewhat easier for shipowners to distinguish the acceptable private maritime security contractors from the more questionable ones.
Hereford, U.K., based Ambrey Risk has successfully gained certification from Lloyd's Register Quality Assurance (LRQA) against ISO/PAS 28007.
In doing so, it joins a growing number of Private Maritime Security Companies offering greater accountability to the shipping industry, something that Ambrey Risk Managing Director, Chris Charnley, welcomes very much.
ISO/PAS 28007, as part of the ISO 28000 family of security standards, gives established guidelines to private maritime security companies (PMSC) that supply privately contracted armed security personnel (PCASP) on board ships. Certification to these standards demonstrates to the international community that they, and their operatives, can legally, safely and effectively guard shipping.
Ambrey Risk specializes in security for commercial shipping and oil and gas installations, with a core focus on the Gulf of Aden and Indian Ocean along with global land based security and risk mitigation. The company employs over 50 full-time staff, has more than 100 deployed personnel at any one time and retains around 400 security personnel vetted and available for deployment. It also offers a training package for military service leavers that includes opportunities for possible employment on completion of training.
"As Ambrey and other providers successfully complete the ISO 28007 process, this growing pool presents a clear choice for the shipping industry: those demonstrating a quality security management process in safeguarding seafarers and those who do not," says Mr. Charnley.
LRQA UK Business Center Manager, David Derrick commented: "Certification to the ISO 28000 and ISO/PAS 28007 standards clearly shows that Ambrey Risk have made a commitment in demonstrating their professionalism to ship owners and managers. In meeting the rigorous requirements of these standards, they have shown their commitment to customer service, quality, safety and risk management processes.
"LRQA has provided a robust and challenging assessment of operations both here in the U.K. and in overseas locations and looks forward to working with Ambrey in the on-going assessment program."
"We are extremely proud to have achieved certification to ISO/PAS 28007 with LRQA," said Mr. Charnley. "An increase of ISO/PAS 28007 certified PMSC's is very important, the fact that Ambrey and others are becoming certified, demonstrates our commitment to the very highest levels of compliance and standards. It is very rewarding to have had our systems and processes so comprehensively scrutinised whilst achieving what we have. It should help continue to build on the message to our current and future clients, that you can choose security providers who offer integrity, the very highest standards of compliance and therefore peace of mind, at attractive commercial terms."
LRQA is one of three certification bodies participating in the United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS) pilot scheme. UKAS has been appointed to assess certification companies offering assessment to ISO/PAS 28007, verifying that it uses competent assessors with the correct qualifications and that rigorous, tested auditing processes are being followed. This is key in ensuring the confidence of the shipping market. It is expected that the accreditation process will be completed by the end of the year.