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Maritime Blogs

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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in maritime safety news

All inflatable life rafts have an emergency pack which according to SOLAS requirement, there are SOLAS A and B two type. Here we will learn the difference between SOLAS A and B.

b2ap3_thumbnail_liferaft-equipment-solas-a-pack.jpg

1.Life rafts: Standards of equipment

Life Raft Construction

  • Insulating double wall canopy
  • Insulating Heat Sealed Inflatable Floor
  • Painter/Static Line (Length, 130 ft.)
  • CO2 Inflation System
  • Painter/Static Line Attachment Point
    (1700 lbs. test) (6-10 Person Capacity)
  • Righting Strap
  • Lifelines (Inner)
  • Lifelines (Outer)
  • Exterior Locator Light
  • Interior Light
  • Pressure Relief Valves
  • Large Rectangular Ballast Pockets
  • Retro-Reflective Tape
  • Boarding Ladder
  • Boarding Handholds
  • Static Line Weak Link
  • Canopy Support Arches
  • Sealed Buoyancy Chambers
  • Approved Hydrostatic Release
  • Manual Topping Off Valves
  • Double Layer Storm Doors
  • Fiberglass/Fabric Container
  • Pressure Relief Valve Plugs

Life Raft Equipment

  • Sea Anchor(Automatically Deployed)
  • Floating/Heaving Line (Length 100 ft.)
  • Rain Water Collector
  • Floating Knife
  • Waterproof Equipment Bag
  • Raft Use Instructions
  • Individual Thermal Protective Aids (2 ea.)
  • Paddles
  • Manual Inflation/Bilge Pump
  • Repair Clamps (6 ea.)
  • Adhesive & Patch Repair Kit

Additional equipment required to bring life-raft to SOLAS approved standard. SOLAS A is more comprehensive than SAOLA B!

SOLAS “B” EQUIPMENT:   (in addition to all standard equipment described above)

  • Waterproof Flashlight
  • Spare Flashlight Bulb
  • Spare Flashlight “D” Cell Batteries (3 ea.)
  • Sponges (2 ea.)
  • Bailer
  • SOLAS Parachute Distress Signals (2 ea.)
  • SOLAS Red Handheld Distress Signals (2 ea.)
  • SOLAS Smoke Signal
  • Seasick Bags (1 Per Person)
  • Water Storage Bag
  • Thermal Protective Aid
  • Signal Mirror
  • First Aid Kit
  • Signaling Whistle
  • Anti-Seasickness Pills (6 Per Person)
  • Spare Sea Anchor

SOLAS “A” EQUIPMENT:  (in addition to all standard and SOLAS B equipment described above)

  • Graduated Drinking Cup
  • Drinking Water (6-20 Person Capacity – 1½ Liters Per Person)
  • Food Ration (10 Kilo-Joules Per Person)
  • Can Opener
  • Fishing Kit
  • SOLAS Parachute Distress Signals (2 Add’l, 4 total)
  • SOLAS Red Handheld Distress Signals (2 Add’l, 4 total))
  • SOLAS Smoke Signal (1 Add’l, 2 total)
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The Polar Code is adopted by resolution MSC.385(94). The Polar Code applies to the areas around Antarctica, south of latitude 60°S and around the Arctic. In principle, these are the waters north of latitude 60°N with the exemptions off the coast of Iceland and northern Scandinavia as well as parts of Russia.

Vessels sailing in cold conditions are affected by the Polar Code which enters into force on 1st January 2017. Ship owners already preparing for the new code will realize that besides technical requirements also operational aspects have to be considered. One of them is appropriate training for the crew. 

A detailed definition is given in SOLAS regulations XIV/1.2 and XIV/1.3.

Does the Polar Code allow substituting certificate holders with other personnel?

Yes, this is mentioned in Chapter 12.3.2 of the Polar Code: “the administration may allow the use of a person(s) other than the master, chief mate or officers […]” under certain conditions. These conditions require that the other person is qualified as nautical officer according to STCW (reg. II/2, section A-II/2). Therefore, only qualified nautical officers may substitute the requirements. Furthermore, it is required that enough persons on board must hold an appropriate certificate in order to cover all watches.

This means that only one person alone cannot substitute several missing certificates. There have to be enough persons to cover all watches, keeping in mind the minimum hours of rest at all times. Two special requirements apply in addition to the above. When operating in waters other than open waters or bergy waters, the master, chief mate and officers in charge of a navigational watch on passenger ships and tankers shall meet the applicable basic training requirements.

When operating in waters with an ice concentration of more than 2/10, all nautical officers including the master on cargo ships other than tankers shall meet the applicable basic training requirements. Even having hired in additional persons to satisfy the requirements for training does not relieve the master or officer of the navigational watch from their duties and obligations for the safety of the ship.

What does the Polar Code define regarding manning and training?

This is answered in Chapter 12 of Part I-A Safety Measures. For the details for the qualification the Polar Code refers to Chapter V of the Convention and Code on Standards of Training, Certification, and Watchkeeping (STCW). The Polar Code sets the framework for the application who, when and where needs to have which qualification. As the normal condition, it is required that the navigational watch officers, including the master, have received sufficient training and following this have a basic or advanced certificate of proficiency.

The requirements are separated into the ship types and the local conditions they sail in. Depending if it is a tanker, a passenger ship or another ship type and depending if the ship sails in ice-free conditions (not any kind of ice is present), in “open waters” (defined as navigable water in which sea ice is less than 1/10) or in “other waters” (waters others than ice free or open waters) they have different requirements for training.

The easiest is the ice-free condition where no certificate is required for anybody. In “open waters” only tanker and passenger ship’s navigational officers on operational and management level need a basic training and the appropriate certificate. When any ship enters “other waters” any navigational officer must have received basic training and hold the related certificate while masters and chief mates must have received advanced training and holding the related certificate.

 

Who needs to do which training?

 

Following the Regulation V/4 there are two main trainings defined: The basic and the advanced training. The basic training is applicable for masters, chief mates and officers in charge of a navigational watch on ships operating in polar waters. They have to do an approved basic training course in order to apply for a Certificate of Proficiency (CoP). The advanced training is applicable for masters and chief mates on ships operating in polar waters.

 

They have to have a basic certificate, at least two months of approved seagoing service in the deck department at management level or while performing watchkeeping duties at the operational level and of course completed the advanced training course. At intervals not exceeding five years every master or officer shall establish continued professional competence. As for other competencies, this could be done by approved seagoing service or an approved course or other means approved by the administration.

 

 

 

 What does STCW require the seafarer to do?

As defined in the Polar Code STCW sets the details of what should be trained. Therefore, STCW will be amended with a new regulation V/4 on “mandatory minimum requirements for the training and qualifications of masters and deck officers on ships operating in polar waters” which is expected for entry into force on 1st July 2018 according to circular letter No 3641.

Are there transitional provisions?

If you are already an experienced sailor STCW has included transitional provisions for the first two years after the entry into force which will be then until 1st July 2020. Nautical officers may apply for the basic certificate according to these transitional provisions if they have approved seagoing service on board a ship operating in polar waters or equivalent approved seagoing service for a period of at least three months in total during the preceding five years; or have successfully completed a training course meeting the training guidance established by the organization for ships operating in polar waters. This guidance is laid down in section B-V/g of the STCW Code.

For the advanced certificate seafarers may apply according to the transitional provisions if they have approved seagoing service on board a ship operating in polar waters or equivalent approved seagoing service for a period of at least three months in total during the preceding five years; or successfully completed a training course meeting the training guidance established by the organization for ships operating in polar waters (sec B-V/g) and having completed approved seagoing service on board a ship operating in polar waters or equivalent approved seagoing service, for a period of at least two months in total during the preceding five years.

How to handle the two entry into force dates?

As the amendments to STCW enter into force only one and a half year after the Polar Code enters into force it is strongly recommended to consult the flag state if they aim for early implementation of the STCW amendments and local port authorities to discuss a solution which is accepted. For the flag state, it may be considered that they refer to the transitional provisions in order to issue certificates at least to existing seafarers.

Maybe they have approved also training in compliance with the future regulation V/4 or with the guidance given in section B-V/g. It is recommended to follow up the outcome of the next IMO meetings in case additional guidance might be provided. An overview of latest statutory technical and regulatory news can be found. 

 

 

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 ALL ABOUT TAX, CURRENCY AMENDMENT, AND BLACK MONEY: INDIA 

 

Exemption from Tax for Indian seafarers

 

Institute of Marine Engineers ( India ):Information

 

what is an RPSL number? and Why it is important 

 

PIC:SAFETY4SEA

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Posted by on in Marine Accident Casebook

Is there anything remotely ambiguous about the signage on this hatch-cover? Why did three seafarers ignore them? Unfortunately the report from the Federal Bureau of Maritime Casualty Investigation on three confined space deaths aboard the German-flagged general cargo ship Suntis does not tell us. Key questions remain unanswered but the circumstances are all too familiar.

Says the report "MV Suntis left the port of Riga in Latvia on 19 May 2014 and reached the port of Goole in the United Kingdom on the evening of Saturday 24 May 2014. The crew was composed of a 67-year-old German master, a 60-year-old German chief officer, and three Philippine seamen (38, 33 and 30 years old). The ship was laden with timber.

"The discharge operation began with the unloading of deck cargo by a shore-based crane and stevedores at about 0545 on Monday 26 May. Two OS were assigned to remove the tarpaulins that were attached to protect the deck cargo on board. One crew member (possibly both) climbed into the forward tween deck hatch during the discharge operation. The chief officer and a third seaman (AB 3 ) noted the absence of the two other crew members and proceeded to look for them. Since the two of them were not found in the aft superstructure, the AB and the chief officer proceeded forward (the AB via the wood loaded main cargo hatch cover and the chief officer on the starboard weather deck). On arriving at the end of the hatch, the AB saw the chief officer call and then climb into the forward hatch to the tween deck. When the AB arrived at and looked into the hatch, he saw the chief officer collapse.

"The AB immediately climbed into another hatch to forecastle's access hatch and switched on the cargo hold's ventilation fan from there. After that, he ran back to the superstructure and alerted the master at about 0645. At the same time, the stevedores were informed that something was reportedly not right on board the Suntis. The AB collected his EEBD, which was stored in the cabin, and a breathing apparatus (BA) set from the aft store. In the confusion, he forgot the full- face mask, however. On arrival back at the forecastle, lifting slings were passed around the three collapsed crew members with the assistance of the two stevedores and they were pulled on to the deck. This involved the two stevedores, one with and one without an EEBD, and the AB with the BA set climbing down the ladder alternately.

"Although the BA also worked to some degree without wearing a mask, the AB and the two stevedores suffered severe breathing difficulties. None of the three crew members who climbed into the hatch survived despite immediate attempts at resuscitation."

suntishatxh1

Once each victim reached the bottom of the ladder from the hatch they were breathing an atmosphere of about 6 per cent oxygen. Any oxygen concentration below 20 per cent should be regarded as potentially hazardous. At 6 per cent the result is unconsciousness and often death.

Baldly, the casualties died because they broke the rules. The situation is a familiar one – an initial victim enters a dangerous space and collapses. A second person attempts a rescue and also succumbs, followed by another. Two-thirds of confined space casualties are people who have attempted a rescue.

If you don't do it right it's your friends who will die trying to save you.

The BSU describes the rescue attempts as 'reckless' and it's hard to disagree. Inability to use the BA equipment properly and the inappropriate use of an EEBD – a piece of kit that should never be used to enter a dangerous space – suggest strongly that the crew had either not been drilled in confined space rescue or tht any such drills were ineffective. The BSU seems not to have determined what training had been done.

Suntis's SMS looked good on paper: Any compartment or tank that is isolated from the outside air for an extended period is, without exception, defined as an enclosed space and may be entered only with the approval of a ship's officer. The ship's officer must work through and complete a checklist ('Entering a confined space') prior to approving entry to any such compartment. That requires measurement of the ambient air and only then will the master or ship's officer responsible approve entry into the compartment". Yet it seems unlikely that this incident was the first time anyone one the vessel had entered a confined space without following the rules and very likely that it was perceived a mere paper exercise that was unnecessary in the 'real world of seafarers'.

b2ap3_thumbnail_suntiswood1.png

BSU does not address whether a supposed "safe manning" of 5, including the master, is appropriate.

The Confidential Hazardous Incident Programme, CHIRP, raises a number of concerns regarding the official report "For example there is no reference as to training and experience of the crew in the carriage of timber cargoes. Similarly, there is no reference to the hours worked in the previous 24 hours and days in the preceding seven days. Given there is a total crew of 5 including the Master on a two watch system and trading in North European waters, it is difficult to accept there will be an effective SMS in place".

From September to November this year the Paris and Tokyo Memorandums of Understanding on Port State Control will be conducting Concentrated Inspections Campaigns on on crew familiarisation for confined space entry. One suspects that the results will confirm what is already known: Too little is being done to reduce these unacceptable and unnecessary fatalities.

The Confidential Hazardous Incident Programme, CHIRP, raises a number of concerns regarding the official report "For example there is no reference as to training and experience of the crew in the carriage of timber cargoes. Similarly, there is no reference to the hours worked in the previous 24 hours and days in the preceding seven days. Given there is a total crew of 5 including the Master on a two watch system and trading in North European waters, it is difficult to accept there will be an effective SMS in place".

From September to November this year the Paris and Tokyo Memorandums of Understanding on Port State Control will be conducting Concentrated Inspections Campaigns on on crew familiarisation for confined space entry. One suspects that the results will confirm what is already known: Too little is being done to reduce these unacceptable and unnecessary fatalities.

Download BSU Report

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Golden Bollard 2017
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