Schat-Harding has set a new free fall lifeboat record with its new generation FF1200 boat. The boat was successfully dropped from a free fall height of 60 meters. The world record drop was conducted as part of the certification tests of the boat.

The FF1200 was designed to meet the need for lifeboats to drop safely from greater heights as offshore installations get larger and to meet stringent new standards for performance in heavy seas which will facilitate the evacuation of rigs and installations in the Norwegian North Sea.

"The FF1200 managed this height in an excellent way," says Geir Arne Veglo, CEO of Umoe Schat-Harding Equipment AS. "The FF1200 entered the water cleanly and made excellent headway."

The boat was loaded with seven tonnes to simulate the full capacity of 70 100 kg people. As part of the test, the engine was started immediately and was left running for four hours. The program also included maneuvering tests.

The FF1200 is the only lifeboat that has completed the full-scale tests set by the new requirements for free fall lifeboats on the Norwegian Continental Shelf, DNV-OS-E406 standard. After the tests, the FF1200 is now lifeboat certified for the highest free fall drop.

"This lifeboat has been well received in the market. Schat-Harding has already secured orders for 47 systems and is now receiving more requests for new projects. We have exciting times ahead as the Norwegian and global offshore markets develop," says Veglo.

The FF1200 boat can carry 70 persons secured in special seats with five point harnesses. After dropping into the water, the boat's momentum carries it clear of the rig, after which its 280 hp engine speeds it away.