Noreq AS, manufacturer and supplier of maritime deck equipment, signs an agreement for the purchase of the revolutionary ‘Torpedo’ free-fall lifeboat concept.

Today, 18 July 2008, Noreq AS and Magnar Reigstad of Kloster Rescue Systems AS have signed an agreement to further develop the new ‘Torpedo’ lifeboat concept for commercial sales. Both parties have great belief in the concept, which could revolutionise and provide platforms and ships with a new and mandatory safety standard.

Problems relating to today’s lifeboats have gradually attracted a lot of attention in the North Sea, where several oil installations have had to downsize their crews and some platforms have even had to be shut down in poor weather to enable evacuation with today’s lifeboats. This is costly and puts the crew at risk. Several oil companies are therefore concentrating on developing requirements and standards for future rescue equipment.

The ‘Torpedo’ lifeboat and Magnar Reigstad have already received a lot of attention and many regard the concept as the lifeboat design of the future.

”Noreq AS has signed this agreement to buy the ‘Torpedo’ lifeboat because we have absolute faith in the project”, says Managing Director Styrk Bekkenes. “Some necessary tests are still required, but, as producers of lifeboats, we see all the advantages of Mr. Reigstad’s concept. We will now concentrate our efforts and resources to speed up the remaining development. It is no secret that some of our customers have already shown an interest in the ‘Torpedo’ lifeboat,” says Mr Bekkenes. The future manufacturing of the ‘Torpedo’ lifeboat will probably take place in Europe.

”It is also important to us that StatoilHydro, Norway’s biggest oil company, has chosen to support the project through its own supplier and product development programme (LOOP). This enables us to carry out more tests. StatoilHydro has indicated that they will provide further funding if the tests yield promising results. We plan to start the tests in August.”

Boat designer and innovator Magnar Reigstad is satisfied that he has found what he regards as the right partner. “I see that Noreq AS will be able to fully and effectively develop the design of the ‘Torpedo’ lifeboat. The company has well-tried expertise and a wide range of contacts through which to make the product known. To me, it is important that the ‘Torpedo’ lifeboat now becomes a reality, so that safer rescue equipment which can save lives becomes available on the market.”

Noreq AS bases its activities on improving maritime equipment, and, from this perspective, they regard the ‘Torpedo’ lifeboat as their most important product so far. Earlier this year, Noreq AS acquired the engineering company Crevi Davit AS, in order to develop a new generation of lifeboat launching arrangements. ”We will obviously exploit the competence we have acquired in our further development of the ‘Torpedo’ lifeboat,” Mr. Bekkenes concludes.

Information about the ‘Torpedo’ lifeboat:

The ‘Torpedo’ lifeboat has many advantages over today’s free-fall lifeboats. The most important of these are:

- It has a ‘Torpedo’ design with a circular/ spherical shape which provides strength and unique free-fall properties
- It can withstand being dropped from a great height.
- It is propelled more quickly away from the platform/ship.
- Personnel on board are less exposed to gravitational forces
- It is less affected by drop angle, height, waves and wind.

Modular tests, in which a scale 1:15 model was dropped from heights of between 32 and 68 metres, have already been performed with very promising results.