Taking stock of your global firefighting foam needs

After acquiring Drew Marine’s Fire Safety Rescue division in 2019, VIKING has been consolidating its position as a fire safety specialist, and a new global partnership with foam supplier Dr. Sthamer is a milestone for our one-stop shop maritime and offshore safety services.

Established in Hamburg in 1886, Dr. Sthamer is well-known across the marine industry for its high-quality concentrates, which meet requirements under IMO1312 for Deck Foam Systems and IMO670 for High Expansion Inside Air Foam systems for Engine Rooms and Machinery spaces. A strong investor in R&D, Dr. Sthamer’s environmentally responsible products also include next-generation high stability 1% Fluorine Free Foams.

The new Global Partnership Agreement covers worldwide distribution of multiple Dr. Sthamer marine foam products, with inventories held at VIKING distribution hubs in Dubai, Houston, Odense, Rotterdam, and Singapore. VIKING is also offering a total package of support services, including tank cleaning, disposal and refilling, periodic inspection, and sampling. Foams will be offered under a five-year warranty, subject to verification of storage conditions.

An estimated 50% of vessels in service use foam-based marine firefighting systems, including the deck foam systems used on product tankers, chemical tankers, gas carriers and FPSOs, and the engine room protection arrangements used on newer ships.

Fully tested for quality

VIKING Life-Saving Equipment Global Director of Marine Fire Service, William Gielen, says the agreement builds on previous arrangements between Dr. Sthamer and Drew Marine FSR, with new impetus added by VIKING commitments to grow service capability and invest in its own foam testing facilities in Odense which you can read more about later in this magazine.

“Dr. Sthamer is renowned in the marine market for innovation and for the close attention, it pays to the different foam requirements of different ship types. In the marine market, quality and product stability are essential, but giving the customer what they need also demands flexibility in product development.

“We like to say that the customer’s marine fire safety is safe with VIKING. Building on two strong marine brands and our combined product and service expertise, MFS also becomes a key part of VIKING’s ‘one-stop-shop’ marine safety offer.”

One-stop-shop for maritime safety

Foam supplies and related services will now also be offered within the VIKING Ship Owner Agreements, devised to take care of all of a customer’s safety equipment and service needs across the fleet for a fixed period. “Ship- and asset owners can expect the same high quality on marine fire safety that led them to choose VIKING for their liferafts, lifeboats, immersion suits, and other safety equipment, delivered quickly and without fuss at an affordable cost,” says William.

“For marine fire equipment safety, ship- and asset owners can expect the same high quality and efficiency that led them to choose VIKING for their liferafts, lifeboats, immersion suits and other safety equipment”

William Gielen, Global Service Director MFS

The consolidated MFS business draws on a commitment for growth, but also marine-specific experience and expertise covering product specifications, transport, storage, fill and certification that some less focused suppliers can no longer claim. “Marine foams is a core business for Dr. Sthamer, while safety is VIKING’s business. Helping ship owners make the right decision on foam selection and giving them the technical support to maintain these critical products in optimum condition protects lives at sea,” says Belarmino Dubois, VIKING Global Service Manager for Drydocking and Foam.

Critical expertise

The condition of foam stored on board ship is therefore a crucial part of marine fire safety, adds Dubois. “Customers need technical support to ensure that their storage tanks remain fit for purpose, especially where older ships are concerned,” he says. “That demands technical expertise, but also a close working relationship with the owner and those on-board ships, with all parties working together to secure the necessary approvals.

Dr. Sthamer is providing technical training for VIKING MFS ‘ambassadors’, who will offer full product and service support on the characteristics, performance, condition, and storage requirements for branded marine foams. In turn, VIKING is offering a prepaid, express sampling service under its new foam analysis program.

Jan Knappert, International Sales Director, Dr. Sthamer, comments: “The VIKING marine fire safety business has clarity of purpose and is investing in its people and in strategically-located inventories. Now, when a customer inquires about marine foam availability, it’s not a question of coordinating delivery with a future vessel call; I can just say ‘Contact VIKING, they have it in stock’.”

Browse related articles