The Response Resource Assessment Branch (RRAB) evaluates the environmental emergency response resources available to key federal decision-makers throughout the United States' 41 Captain of the Port (COTP) zones and 10 EPA Regions. The RRAB accomplishes these evaluations by conducting Preparedness Assessment Verifications (PAVs) and managing the Oil Spill Removal Organization (OSRO) classification program.
PAVs are conducted for each COTP zone and Alternate Classification City every 3 years and prior to regularly scheduled Government-led National Preparedness for Exercise Program (PREP) exercises. PAVs evaluate all response resources from classified and non-classified OSROs available to the COTP or key Federal Decision-Maker within a 70-mile radius (or beyond, if necessary) of the exercise or COTP location. The results of a PAV are reported directly to the COTP and captured in an After Action Report. Any changes in equipment status or new equipment discovered during a PAV is also updated in the Oil Pollution Act of 1990 (OPA 90) mandated Response Resource Inventory (RRI).
The OSRO classification program was developed to facilitate the preparation and review of FRPs and VRPs by providing a standardized system with which to group response capabilities. Once classified, plan holders can list OSROs by name and classification as an alternative to listing extensive resources in their plans, since their resources are listed in the RRI. OSRO classification is a strictly voluntary program which plan holders can use for regulatory planning compliance purposes. An OSRO does not have to be classified and plan holders do not have to limit their response resources to Coast Guard classified OSROs.
An OSRO classification does not guarantee the performance of an OSRO, nor does the use of a Coast Guard-classified OSRO in a plan relieve plan holders of their ultimate statutory and regulatory responsibility to ensure the adequacy of the spill response resources identified in a response plan.
To participate in the classification program, OSROs must agree to meet all program requirements. The same criteria will be used by the Coast Guard to evaluate the capability of OSROs identified in response plans but not participating in the classification program.
To apply for a mechanical OSRO classification, an OSRO must establish an RRI account and enter their response resources. Once an OSRO has completed the RRI process and a classification has been determined, the OSRO must call the NSFCC Response Support Division to receive an official classification letter.
To apply for a dispersant OSRO classification, contact the NSFCC Response Support Division.
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