Partners Promise Safer Offshore Crew Transfers

Lockheed Martin and VIKING Life-Saving Equipment Norge AS are joining forces to provide a safer system for transferring offshore crew members in heavy sea conditions. The combination of Lockheed Martin's advanced hullform designs and VIKING Life-Saving Equipment's Selstair embarkation systems will suffice in any weather and offer cost advantages over helicopter transport, they say.

"Lockheed Martin is an innovator in developing fast, stable hullforms, and VIKING Life-Saving Equipment Norge is a world leader in developing embarkation, evacuation, and safety equipment for the maritime industry," said Dan Schultz, vice president and general manager of Lockheed Martin's Maritime Security & Ship Systems line of business in Baltimore, Md. "By coming together, our two companies will provide a solution that reduces the risk inherent in the transfer of personnel between a ship at sea and an offshore platform."

VIKING (www.viking-yachting.com/viking.nsf), based in Bergen, Denmark, supplies firefighter turnout gear in addition to safety equipment for maritime and offshore applications. Selstair is a collapsible staircase lowered by gravity and raised electrically. It has non-slip aluminum steps and landings, handrails, and a safety net around the staircase.

"Our success depends on a team effort, with shared values and common goals. Together, we are committed to raising safety standards and determined to lead the way for a safer life at sea," said Bjørn Tormod Akselsen, managing director of VIKING Life-Saving Equipment Norge. The company launched the rectangular version of Selstair at the 2006 Offshore Technology Conference.

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