Adapting to Covid-19

The team adapted quickly to ensure we are working safely and effectively to continue to meet our customers’ needs
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By Kate Kelley

As the Covid-19 pandemic continues to affect normal operations across the US, as well as globally, the Witt O’Brien’s team has adapted quickly to ensure we are working safely and effectively to continue to meet our customers’ needs.

While the majority of our team has pivoted to working remotely, our 24/7 Command Center remains online and fully staffed to ensure our clients have complete access to our team at any time. Our response team has also developed and implemented a Covid-19 response plan to ensure we provide robust and safe support during an incident response.

A core part of our compliance program for our clients is our annual Incident Management Team Tabletop Exercise (IMT TTX) event that we carry out around the globe to ensure clients meet their US Coast Guard exercise requirements and remain up to date on the ever-changing set of US and international regulations.

Unfortunately, we had to cancel our one-day IMT TTX seminars for the year to ensure the safety of our team and clients. However, we have developed an IMT TTX eLearning course to bring 2020 compliance directly to them. The course allows our clients to meet their 2020 requirement on their own schedule and from the safety of their home or office. We are also hosting a series of live webinars throughout the year to ensure our clients remain up to date on regulatory changes and have the opportunity to ask our team questions.

We have also adapted our traditional in-office exercise program by using online audio and video conference using platforms such as Microsoft Teams to focus on testing communication within our client’s’ Emergency Response Teams (ERT) as it relates to an incident in US waters. The exercises are specifically designed to test a company’s ability to coordinate and respond to an emergency from remote locations, when physical assembly of the ERT is not possible in one location. This includes remote availability, retrieval, and dissemination of the information required for the response, amongst the team members as well as with external parties.

Finally, our vessel boarding team has implemented a safety assessment for vessel inspections to ensure we are able to continue to support our clients calling in the US. As many superintendents are unable to travel to vessels, we are able to continue to provide technical auditing and inspection services to help keep our client’s’ vessel operations in the US moving and doing so safely.

While these are just a few of the ways our team has begun adapting our day-to-day operations, we are committed to continuing to innovate and develop new solutions to counter the challenges of the pandemic for our clients and the industry.

For more information on any of the programs mentioned above or Witt O’Brien’s vessel services program, please contact

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