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MARINE FIRE FIGHTING

Assessment - Training - Consultancy

AN INTRODUCTION TO MARINE FIRE FIGHTING & PORT STATE CONTROL

Of all the disasters that can happen to a vessel at sea, fire must be near the top of the list. Marine fire accidents are extremely dangerous, very destructive and very costly. They may take the lives of the ship's crew or passengers and cause untold damage to the environment, not to mention the enormous financial loss to the operating Company.
Ship fire-fighting requires a highly coordinated response by the crew to control the immediate danger that a fire presents and the subsequent containment of that situation. They must react with the precision of a military operation to have any chance of success.

A ship at sea must be fully self contained in its fire-fighting abilities. 
It must be familiar with specific marine fire fighting procedures; dedicated protocols that differ vastly from fires on land.

BLUEBEAST Provides Maximum Protection Using Maximum Preparation

Land based fire fighters know that ship fires are extremely difficult to handle because of their complexity and difficulty of access. Fires account for about one third of all fatalities due to accidents on board container vessels. Engine room fires are a major contributor, closely followed by fires in cargo areas. However, not all incidents of fire are published today and we are only shown the tip of the iceberg. Many ship owners have become complacent and believe that a high safety record will guarantee their insurance cover but this is no longer the case.

The number of container vessels and the amount of containers carried are growing constantly. Vessels are becoming larger and their cargo is quite often worth more than the vessel itself. Insurers are becoming increasingly concerned with these risks and it is important that all personnel are well trained in EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS and are fully aware of the consequences if they don't.

This presents a major challenge for every Operator and requires a dedicated marine fire-fighting system - unlike anything else. Ship fire fighting has become an essential component of life aboard today's vessels including Cruise Ships, Ro Ro's, Cargo vessels, Bulk Carriers, Tankers and Container ships. With stringent legislation, International Port State safety Inspections have detained an ever increasing number of vessels due to inadequate Emergency Preparedness Standards. Marine fire training and safety is part of the mandatory requirements for all seafarers.

Powers to Detain

In any case where a ship does not comply with the requirements of the Port State Authority Regulations, the ship shall be liable to be detained and section 284 of the Merchant Shipping Act 1995 (which relates to the detention of a ship) shall have effect in relation to that ship; "The Merchant Shipping (Fire Protection) (Large Ships) Regulations 1998". Fire-fighting, lifesaving appliances and associated drills account for approximately one third of the overall deficiencies identified on detained vessels.

Ship Risk Profile

New Inspection Regime (NIR) came into force early 2011 having been developed by PMOU Task Force 31.
Instead of a target factor, every ship has a risk profile based on:

  • TYPE
  • AGE 
  • FLAG 
  • RO  (Recognised Organisation)
  • COMPANY 
  • DETENTIONS
  • DEFICIENCIES
A ship will be either HIGH, STANDARD or LOW RISK and will receive periodic inspections every 5-6 months (High risk), every 10-12,months (Standard risk) and every 24-36 months (Low risk).
When the "inspection window" opens it is PRIORITY II and it may be inspected.
When the "inspection window" is closed it is PRIORITY I and it must be inspected.

LOW RISK
Flag: White list and IMO Audit
Age: Less than 12 years
Class: Recognised Organisation (RO) with high performance and recognised by EU
Company: High performance (new directive)
Deficiencies: Five or less within a 36 month period
Detentions: None

HIGH RISK
Flag: Black list
Age: More than 12 years
Class: Substandard Organisation with low performance
Company: Low performance (new directive)
Detentions: One within the previous 36 months

A vessel inspection will be determined on a points system; for example a high risk vessel such as an Oil Tanker will receive 2 points, if it is blacklisted it will receive a further 2 points, if it is owned by a Company with a poor performance it will receive a further 2 points, if it has had a detention within the last 36 months another 2 points and 1 point  if it is over 12 years old.
Five weighting points or more will class the vessel as HIGH RISK
An ISM deficiency will carry 5 points.

EXPANDED INSPECTIONS
Periodic inspections will be expanded for all high risk  vessels (e.g. tankers, bulk carriers) aged 12 years or over. Additional inspections may be expanded according to the professional judgement of the PSCO.
Expanded checks; overall condition in a list of 14 risk areas e.g. weather tightness, emergency systems, living conditions PLUS a list of specified items for each ship type.
EMSA - Port State Control Officer Training throughout Europe (Directive 95/21)
International Officers will be trained to coordinate and regulate the same standards and expectations with regards to equipment and ISM requirements.
STCW Revisions
MSC 81 (2006) agrees comprehensive review of STCW Convention and Code. It will address inconsistencies, outdated provisions, MSC instructions,clarifications and interpretations already issued and technological advances. Adoption from January 1st 2011.

The cost of a detention or a real fire is catastrophic; failure to prepare is delaying the inevitable. Secure your future now with BLUEBEAST MARINE FIRE MANAGEMENT