This paper describes a series of towing tank tests using a scaled model of a recent container ship for validating the First Order Reliability Method (FORM) based approach to predict the maximum response. The FORM based approach is adopted in conjunction with the nonlinear strip method as an estimation method for the most probable wave episodes (MPWEs) leading to the given extreme wave-induced vertical bending moments (VBMs). Tank tests under the pre-determined MPWEs are conducted to evaluate the extreme wave-induced VBMs. Numerical simulations based on the coupled Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) and Finite Element Analysis (FEA) are also conducted and are compared with the test results under the MPWEs. Furthermore, to estimate the extreme VBM statistics, tank tests under random irregular waves are conducted. A series of validations of the probability of exceedances (PoEs) of the VBM evaluated from the FORM based approach is carried out. The effect of hydroelastic (whipping) vibrations on the extreme VBM statistics are finally discussed.

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