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Oil Record Book Trainer Course

What is the Applicable Regulation?

 As per MARPOL (Annex I), regulations 17 and 36, every oil tanker of 150 gross tonnage and above and every ship of 400 gross tonnage and above other than an oil tanker shall be provided with an Oil Record Book, Part I (Machinery space operations). 

At the end of fiscal year 2016, the Department’s Environmental and Natural Resources Division imposed criminal penalties of more than $363 million in fines and more than 32 years of imprisonment from cases related to intentional discharges of pollutants from vessels. 

Oil Record Book Trainer Software minimizes the margin for error in data entries to the Official Oil record Book, rendering the possibility for error to the best possible extent.

Definition of Oily Bilge Water

Defined in MARPOL annex I as water which may be contaminated by oil resulting from things such as leakage or maintenance work in machinery spaces. Any liquid entering the bilge system including bilge wells, bilge piping, tank top or bilge holding tanks is considered oily bilge water. In addition to oil, bilge water often contains quantities of detergents and solvents.

Machinery spaces on large commercial vessels contain a wide array of engineering systems, including those used to manage fuel, lubrication, fuel and lubricating oil purification, saltwater service, bilge and ballast, firefighting and sewage. Each system contains numerous pumps, fittings, control devices and other components, along with extensive lengths of piping. All components are engineered to prevent and minimize leakages through the use of mechanical seals, gaskets, etc. Despite this, because machinery spaces are so huge, waste accumulation of 20 cubic metres per day or more may occur. Bilge collects in bilge wells, and from there is pumped to bilge water holding tanks, where fitted.

Definition of Oil Residues (Sludge)

Defined in MARPOL annex I as the residual waste oil products generated during the normal operation of a ship such as those resulting from the purification of fuel or lubricating oil for main or auxiliary machinery, separated waste oil from oil filtering equipment, waste oil collected in drip trays, and waste hydraulic and lubricating oils.

Deep-draught vessels generally burn low quality heavy fuel oil in their engines. This fuel contains contaminates. To prevent damage to engine components, retard wear, and improve combustion, the fuel is purified by centrifuges before entering the engines (a fuel oil purifier room is shown on the photo at the beginning of this article). At preset intervals, a shoot cycle occurs, which ejects contaminates (sludge), which drain to a sludge tank.

Compared with bilge water, fuel oil sludge is generally less varied and the quantities are more predictable, provided the quality of the fuel oil remains constant. Sludge waste is much heavier than bilge water. As a general rule of thumb, approximately 1-2% of the heavy fuel oil burned in a vessel’s main engine and generators ends up as sludge. The quantity could vary depending on the fuel’s quality, its compatibility with previous shipboard fuels and the condition of the equipment used to store, transfer and heat it.

Main and auxiliary engine lubricating oil is similarly processed. The equipment may be self-cleaning, and the resultant sludge and waste fluids enter a sludge tank. The waste quantities produced in this process are normally less than the quantities resulting from fuel oil. Depending on the engine type, the area between the pistons and cylinders may also be lubricated by a separate system. The waste gravitates to a separate sludge oil tank known as a stuffing box or lantern ring drain tank.

Definition of Oily Waste Tanks

The names and arrangement of oily waste tanks on vessels will differ according to the type and size of vessel. All vessels over 400 gt are required to have tanks for collecting oily residues (sludge) and they should be of a size that is adequate to the operation of the vessel. Bilge water holding tanks are not mandatory but are fitted to most vessels. Vessels over 400 gt are also required to be fitted with oil filtering equipment that may include any combination of a separator, filter or coalescer, and also a single unit designed to produce an effluent with oil content not exceeding 15 ppm. A possible example of oily waste production and tank arrangements is shown on the figure below.

Definition of IOPP certificate

The International Oil Pollution Prevention (IOPP) certificate and appendix will contain information about the tanks and equipment on board that particular vessel for the handling of oily waste.

Definition of Oil Record Book

 The International Oil Pollution Prevention (IOPP) certificate and appendix will contain information about the tanks and equipment on board that particular vessel for the handling of oily waste.

Definition of Oily Water Separator

An oily water separator (OWS) (marine) is a piece of equipment specific to the shipping or marine industry. It is used to separate oil and water mixtures into their separate components. This page deals exclusively oily water separators aboard marine vessels. They are found on board ships where they are used to separate oil from oily waste water such as bilge water before the waste water is discharged into the environment. These discharges of waste water must comply with the requirements laid out in Marpol 73/78.

Definition of Incinerator

 The incinerator is an machinery in which we burn all types of waste generated on the ship like, the waste oil from oily water separator, oily rags, sometimes galley waste and of course in special incinerator plastic waste too.


  • All machinery space operations must be clearly and accurately recorded as required. Operations should be recorded in chronological order as they have been executed onboard.

  • The Oil Record Book Part I shall be completed on each occasion, on a tank-to-tank basis if appropriate, whenever any of the following machinery space operations takes place in the ship:

  1. ballasting or cleaning of oil fuel tanks;

  2. discharge of dirty ballast or cleaning water from oil fuel tanks;

  3. collection and disposal of oil residues (sludge and other oil residues);

  4. discharge overboard or disposal otherwise of bilge water which has accumulated in machinery spaces; and

  5. bunkering of fuel or bulk lubricating oil.

  • A comprehensive list of items of machinery space operations to be recorded in the ORB, as appropriate, is included in regulation 17 of Annex I of the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships 1973 as modified by the Protocol of 1978 relating thereto (MARPOL 73/78 consolidated edition 2011, as amended). The items have been grouped into operational sections, each of which is denoted by a letter code.

  • When making entries in the ORB, the date, the operational letter code and item number shall be inserted in the appropriate columns and the required particulars shall be recorded chronologically in the blank spaces (record of operations).

  • In the event of such discharge of oil or oily mixture as is referred to in regulation 4 of this Annex or in the event of accidental or other exceptional discharge of oil not excepted by that regulation, a statement shall be made in the Oil Record Book Part I of the circumstances of, and the reasons for, the discharge.

  • Each operation described in paragraph 2 of this regulation shall be fully recorded without delay in the Oil Record Book Part I, so that all entries in the book appropriate to that operation are completed. Each completed operation shall be signed by the officer or officers in charge of the operations concerned and each completed page shall be signed by the master of ship. The entries in the Oil Record Book Part I, for ships holding an International Oil Pollution Prevention Certificate, shall be at least in English, French or Spanish. Where entries in an official national language of the State whose flag the ship is entitled to fly are also used, this shall prevail in case of a dispute or discrepancy.

  • Any failure of the oil filtering equipment shall be recorded in the Oil Record Book Part I.

  • The Oil Record Book Part I shall be kept in such a place as to be readily available for inspection at all reasonable times and, except in the case of unmanned ships under tow, shall be kept on board the ship. It shall be preserved for a period of three years after the last entry has been made.

  • The competent authority of the Government of a Party to the present Convention may inspect the Oil Record Book Part I on board any ship to which this Annex applies while the ship is in its port or offshore terminals and may make a copy of any entry in that book and may require the master of the ship to certify that the copy is a true copy of such entry. Any copy so made which has been certified by the master of the ship as a true copy of an entry in the ship’s Oil Record Book Part I shall be made admissible in any judicial proceedings as evidence of the facts stated in the entry. The inspection of an Oil Record Book Part I and the taking of a certified copy by the competent authority under this paragraph shall be performed as expeditiously as possible without causing the ship to be unduly delayed.

  • Each completed operation shall be signed for and dated by the officer(s) in charge of the operations concerned. The date of signature should also be written down in the same format, i.e. dd-MON-yyyy, e,g, 20-MAR-2013.

Introduction to SMM Oil Record Book Trainer Software

SMM Oil Record Book (ORB) provides Total Solution to shipping companies record keeping requirement for Compliance with the relevant regulation for the prevention of marine pollution.

Practically this software provides guidance in terms of correct record keeping where all the important info such as collection, management and retention of oil residues, are recorded.

This digital trainer is based on Real Time processes/algorithms with given pump/tank capacities. Enabling different parameters to be calculated ie. the level of bunkers, overflow warnings, tanks filling history etc. (including entry code, narrative and quantities).

The main application window is your control area, which contains the commands and tools you need in order to create, delete, view and print ORB entries, as well as, to view and check your Remaining on Board tank quantities.

New entry button displays a window with all available operations, in order to create a new ORB entry.

Delete entry button removes selected entry, as well as, all entries that have been added after it.

Print entries button gives the user the ability to print on a printer or create a pdf file of the ORB entries in current view.

Real Time warnings inform the user for any incorrect entry.


Program gives user the ablility to view a list of various warnings regarding vessel’s operations, and by extension, assist user to deem if needed to proceed with required actions.


The Warnings list is viewed by pressing the Warnings button in application’s main window. Warnings are color defined for easy reference, and additionally, if a message is flagged as Warning or Error then the button changes color / flashes respectively:

§ Green: for indicating useful Information.
§ Yellow: for indicating issues, as Warning, that are about to arise.
§ Red: for indicating issues, as Error, that require actions to be taken.

Messages When using ORB Trainer various messages are activated depending upon user’s attemping to perform some tasks. Real time warnings inform the user for any incorrect entry.

§ Weekly inventory reminder: If a message, like the below on Fig. 34, is diplayed when the application starts, this means that the user should add a Weekly inventory operation (Group C– Collection of oil residues), as it has been more than a week since the last operation of this kind.



SMM ORB Trainer / Part I - Statistics and Useful Figures (video) (Case Scenario of Use)
SMM ORB Trainer / Sludge Disposal Incinerator (video) (Case Scenario of Use)
SMM ORB Trainer / Transfer between Tanks (video) (Case scenario of use)
SMM Oil Record Book Trainer Software / Update and Check Actual Quantities vs Estimated Quantities (Case Scenario of Use)
ORB Tips & Tricks

Keeping Quantities Log of each IOPP tank. 

Authorization of officers for entries. 

Commands and tools to create, delete, show and print ORB entries. 

View and check remaining on board tank quantities.

Automatic warnings, such as the estimated day of overflow of an IOPP tank. 

Reminder for standard entries (ie: weekly inventory). 

Automatic check of entry correctness. 

Auto-flow rates can be set either at port or at sea. 

Automatic Check of Sludge Production Quantities. 

Automatic Warnings for User set limits. 

Ensuring consistency of the sequence of operations for the harmonization of quantities logistics. 

Insertion-Indication of E.T.A. and warning for collection of oil residues. 

Automatic Checks and validations during the insertion of entries. 

Print and preview filtered entries and export to PDF. 

Image backup of current ORB Entries. 

Familiarization of officers with record keeping as per applicable regulations. 

Automatic synchronization of data between vessel and office. 

Frequently Found Failures

Supplement to the IOPP Certificate (Forms A and B):

(All numbers below refer to the above forms)

  • Bilge separator throughput is stated in paragraph 2.4 and should be verified with manufacturer’s manual and type certificate.

  • Oil residue (sludge) tanks are covered in paragraph 3.1. All tanks including incinerator sludge tank, hFO/DO/LO separators sludge tanks, stuffing box LO drain tank, etc., should be recorded.

  • Bilge water holding tanks are covered in paragraph 3.3 unless a waiver of regulation 14 is valid.

  • Oil residues (sludge) incinerator capacity is stated and should be verified with manufacturer’s manual and type certificate.

  • For auxiliary boiler to burn oil residue (sludge) should be marked and this should be verified with the burner’s manual and piping system.

Sludge collection – pumping – incineration

  • C11: entry weekly of total sludge retention quantity on board. Sludge on board = Sludge produced (sludge incinerated and/or burned in auxiliary boiler).

  • Sludge daily quamtity from purifiers = (0.008 up to 0.01) x hFO consumption + DO consumption

  • Sludge from HFO tanks about 0.015m3 / 1000 kW per day (sludges from bilge water separator)

  • Sludge from 15 ppm bilge water separator.

  • C12.3: Sludge incinerated: Incinerator capacity as per IOPP Certificate, Forms A and B item 3.2.1.

  • C12.4: Sludge burned in auxiliary boiler only when IOPP Certificate, Forms A and B item 3.2.2

  • are ticked.

  • C.12.4: evaporated water from sludge only when IOPP Certificate.

Bilge water discharge overboard

  • D15.2, E16: Bilge water separator capacity as per Supplement to the IOPP Certificate

  • D15.2, E16: At any overboard discharge, quantity must be less than the maximum separator throughput.

  • D15.3: There is not any specific requirement on the frequency of this operation, but an entry at least once per week of bilge water transferred and retained on board (ROB) is recommended. Otherwise operational Section I may be used for the voluntary log record of bilge water holding tank ROB.

  • Discharge within special area as defined in regulation 1.11 of Annex I of MARPOL 73/78 as amended, ONLY when:

    • through the 15 ppm control device

    • bilges free of cargo slops

    • ship en route Special areas for ORB do not coincide with special areas for Garbage Record Book.

  • Section E should be recorded ONLY in case of auto-start of system activation by floater switches in bilge wells or bilge water holding tank. In all remaining cases section D to be used.

Discrepancies between IOPP Certificate, deck log and ORB – suggestions for entries

  • IOPP Certificate should be reviewed to verify tank data entered in the ORB.

  • C11: weekly of total sludge retention quantity on board. Sludge on board = Sludge produced

  • (sludge incinerated and/or burned in auxiliary boiler and/or evaporated).

  • All entries properly signed with time start/end identical between the two logs. Each page of the ORB to be signed by the Master.

  • All entries in the ORB to be done in CAPITAL letters with INDELIBLE INK. Not pencil!

  • For all entries categories B, C, D, E the following must be entered:

    • position and time at start and stop;

    • duration and volume discharged in line with incinerator / bilge water separator capacity.

Prior to arrival in port

  • ORB must be:

    • stamped by the Flag Administration, as required;

    • readily available, filed for 3 years;

    • duly filled in and signed till the date of arrival in port.

  • Bilge water separator overboard valve sealed/locked.

  • Clean filters – check availability of spare filter.

  • 15 ppm 3-way valve test.

  • Incinerator test – familiarisation of all engine officers.

  • Flange for ashore connection properly maintained.

  • Certificates available for incinerator, oil discharge monitoring equipment (ODME), bilge water separator, 15 ppm control equipment.

  • 15 ppm measuring device calibration certificate, if applicable.