Earlier this month PortVision received a license from the US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) that allows PortVision to transmit AIS safety messages directly to vessels that appear to be encroaching on fixed asset infrastructure such as offshore pipelines. Over the last two decades, marine pipeline accidents have been responsible for dozens of deaths and hundreds of millions of dollars in infrastructure damage. PortVision has been working with the Coastal and Marine Operators (CAMO) since 2012 to use AIS and related technology to improve safety around offshore pipelines.
PortVision has been using AIS to notify asset owners of encroachment since 2006. Such automated notification is a core element of PortVision technology and is even protected under US Patent 7933693 issued in 2011. We have numerous offshore pipeline companies and many users who rely on PortVision as an element of their overall safety and security plans.
However, now with FCC and USCG approval, PortVision has the ability to go a step further. Instead of simply notifying users by email or SMS when vessels approach (or slow, or stop) near their fixed assets, now PortVision has the ability to transmit an AIS addressed safety message directly to the wheelhouse of the encroaching vessel. This automated notification can be displayed within modern ECDIS displays, or as an alert on the Class A AIS transponder. The intent is to proactively interact with all stakeholders (most importantly, the mariner) in an effort to increase safety and protect both life and property for all.
Our initial use of this technology will be in a joint pilot project with CAMO and Port Fourchon. I really appreciate all of the collaboration we have had with both CAMO and the Port since we began this effort in 2012. Our expectation is that the success of this important pilot project will serve to expand the use of AIS safety related messaging to other ports, regions, and operators.