The Safety Of Seafarers Going To Sea Engineering Essay

This study aims to educate readers about the safety of mariners traveling to sea and the possible dangers that they face. The study will besides lucubrate about the on-going issues and steps taken to guarantee the safety of the mariners.

Marine Industry has been a major platform for investing and income since the ancient times. Mariners face possible dangers from hit of ships, fire and conditions conditions. Therefore, the casualties onboard a ship have been increasing due to miss of consciousness towards safety on board the ship. The International Maritime Organisation ( IMO ) took stairss to forestall such catastrophes from go oning. Rules have been set up to do certain the equipments onboard the ship are up to day of the month, certified and are on a regular basis inspected. Workers onboard must be good trained in the safety facets. Harmonizing to the International Maritime Organisation ( 2009 ) , ship safety is a topic that is presently having high attending by most states. The International Maritime Organisation ( 2009 ) said that this was due to a figure of serious vas casualties that have occurred in recent old ages.

1.3 Methodology

The information for this study was obtained from the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea ( SOLAS ) 1974 edition, mention books, research about transporting companies and the cyberspace. Case surveies were taken from on-line intelligence articles.

1.4 Scope

As there are many possibilities that could go on onboard a ship, this study will look into entirely about the possible cause of fire at sea, preventative steps, effects of fire, existent events that took topographic point due to fire, types of fire and much more.

2.Fire Hazards onboard the Ship

2.1 Causes of Fire

Harmonizing to John G. Antherson ( 2000 ) , the causes of fire on a ship are n’t a batch different than the causes of fires in any urban scene. As there are electrical circuits onboard the ship, there is a opportunity for an electrical fire is to happen. Machinery onboard a ship can acquire hot when it ‘s runing. An overheating bearing could do a fire. ( John G. Antherson 2000 ) Ships uses burning systems to bring forthing steam, and internal burning engines are used generate electricity. These burning system will acquire really hot and can do a fire. ( John G. Antherson 2000 ) Closed machinery infinites and the volatility of fuel, lubricators and hydraulic fluids around the hot machinery can take to a fire or an detonation. A hit at sea could originate a fire. The galley where nutrient is prepared is another fire jeopardy on board a ship. ( John G. Antherson 2000 ) During ship repairing, metal film editing and welding equipment is carried and used to faulty equipment. Sparks from this equipments could besides get down a fire. There are some more possible ways fires could be started. Fire jeopardies in the cabin could besides do fire to happen. An article ( Anon: Fires In Ships 2002 ) states that careless smoke is the chief cause of fires in ships.

In one instance scenario, 16 Chinese subjects have been taken to the infirmary after a fire broke out in their ship ( APL Columbia ) at port Botany on 5 January 2010.A crew member onboard the 45,000 metric ton APL Columbia ( IMO:9252242 ) noticed a fire in his cabin about 1.30am.The adult male tried to set out the fire but was unsuccessful.The crew members had suffered from fume inspiration and the fire was put out about 5.30 am utilizing the ship ‘s ain firefighting equipment. In another instance scenario, a fire broke out in the engine room. A Maersk container ship ( Maersk Duffield ) crossed Brisbane ‘s Moreton Bay with its engine room on fire and the Emergency Management Queensland chopper is en path to help. One crew member required intervention.

Transporting Database,2009-2010 [ Online ] Available from: hypertext transfer protocol: // [ Accessed 31 January 2010 ]

Figure 1 [ International Maritime Statistics Forum 2007 p.g 15 ]

Figure 2

[ International Maritime Statistics Forum 2007 p.g 16 ]

Harmonizing to the chart ( figure 1 ) made by the Maritime Institute in Gdansk ( 2007 ) , most fire accidents occur during ship fixs. Fire caused from ship fixs take up 79.3 % of most fire accidents in their instance survey. Meanwhile, figure 2 showed that 24.11 % of fire happening on board a ship is located at the Cargo holds and armored combat vehicles.

2.2 Classs of Fire

There are 4 types of fire that might happen onboard a ship. There are Class A, Class B, Class C and Class D fires. The U.S Department of Agriculture, Forest Service ( 2007 ) said that “ Ordinary combustible ” fires are the most common type of fire, and are designated under Class A fire. These occur when a solid, organic stuff such as wood, fabric, gum elastic, or plastic become heated to their brassy point and ignite. This category of fire is reasonably simple to battle and incorporate.According to National Fire Protection Association ( NFPA 2008 ) , the most common manner to make this is by spraying the firing stuff with H2O, O can besides be removed by surrounding the fire with froth from a fire asphyxiator.

Meanwhile, flammable liquid are categorized under Class B fire. The National Fire Protection Association ( 2008 ) reports that this fire follow the same basic fire tetrahedron ( heat, fuel, O, chemical reaction ) as ordinary combustible fires, except that the fuel in inquiry is a flammable liquid such as gasolene, or gas such as natural gas.

An efficient manner to snuff out a liquid or gas fueled fire is to interrupt the chemical concatenation reaction of the fire, which is done by dry chemical and Halon snuff outing agents. Harmonizing to an infusion from Industrial Hygiene and Information Management ( 2008 ) : ES & A ; H Manual Chapter 40, Hazardous Materials, category D fire are fires that are caused by flammable or combustible metals. Examples given by the ES & A ; H manual Chapter 40, Hazardous Materials, of such metals are Ti, Na, Mg, K, U and Ca.

By and large, metal fire hazards occur when sawdust, machine shaves and other metal are present. These fires can be ignited by the same types of ignition beginnings that would get down other common fires.

Wikipedia, Fire Classes [ Online ] Available from: hypertext transfer protocol: //

[ Accessed 1 February 2010 ]

A crew onboard a fishing vas said that “ If a fire was to get down onboard a ship, crew members onboard must cognize what type of fire it is. If a incorrect asphyxiator or method is being used, the fire might distribute even more. ” ( Florida Sport Fishing Crew 2002 )

3. Consequences of fire

3.1 Loss of Revenue and Marine Environment

The International Maritime Organisation ( 2009 ) said that most accidents onboard a ship will ensue in a loss of gross. Cargos onboard a ship might be damaged and 1000000s of dollars worth of lading and resources will be affected. Fire onboard a oiler ship will hold a high opportunity of doing an detonation and fuel leaked into the sea will do H2O pollution and that will impact the marine environment. Thousands of dollar will be used to clean up the oil spill. A instance survey given by the Port State Information exchange ( 2006 ) was that of Hyundai Fortune where an inadvertent fire broke out on 21st March 2006. The combined cost of the ship and damaged lading is estimated at over 300 million US dollars.

Harmonizing to an on-line article by Brisbane Times, oil spill clean-up can be instead dearly-won. In a instance survey by the article, an insurance company of a Hong Kong-based lading ship had to pick the measure for a 20 metric tons of Diesel fuel into Waterss off Stradbroke Island. Authorities announced that the estimated cost of the clean-up will make about $ 100,000 a twenty-four hours and take seven yearss to finish.

Daniel Hurst 2009, Oil spill clean-up to be $ 100,000 a twenty-four hours [ Online ] Brisbane times Available from: hypertext transfer protocol: // [ Accessed on 7th February 2010 ]

3.2 Political Fallout

Political radioactive dust might besides happen if fleet action is non taken. Political radioactive dust will do the repute of the authorities or authorization to be at interest. ( M.Masellis and S.W.A.A Gunn 1992 ) The catastrophes that occur within the Maritime Industries can be used as an illustration for resistance parties to fault the authorities and this might alter the mentality of the society towards the authorities.

Harmonizing to an on-line article by BBC intelligence, an oil well in the Timor Sea off the north-west seashore of Australia caught fire. The oil rig had been leaking oil and Marine fire combatants were fighting for 10 hebdomads to halt the leak. The National Offshore Petroleum Safety Authority had been called out to assist battle the fire and other squads such as the Geoscience Australia and the Australian Maritime Safety Authority were on standby. However, an resistance spokesman accused the Environment Minister of Australia of making nil to halt the oil leak.

BBC News 2009, Australia good catches fire [ Online ] Available from: hypertext transfer protocol: //

3.3 Human Casualties

Accidents onboard a ship will besides do human casualties to happen. Fire particularly will be life endangering onboard a rider ship and it will do pandemonium and terror among riders. ( L.M. Collins 1999 ) A good manner to guarantee that human life is non lost is for the crew and riders to follow instructions given by the Captain. If the riders follow the instructions fleetly, they will be able to get away from the ship safely. ( L.M. Collins 1999 )

One of the major events that had many human casualties was that of RMS Titanic. Harmonizing to David G, Titanic was struck by an iceberg and sank in two hours and 40 proceedingss on 15 April 1912. The sinking of the Titanic resulted in 1517 deceases out of the 2223 people on board. The high casualty rate was due to the fact that the ship was non transporting adequate lifeboats for everyone onboard.

Brown, David G. ( 2000 ) . The Last Log of the Titanic. McGraw-Hill Professional. ISBN 0071364471.

Most fire instances are rapidly dealt with and the lone losingss that the crew face are the lading or natural stuffs onboard. Up to this twenty-four hours, rider ship have non faced any fire incidents that resulted in major human casualties.

4.Fire Safety Measures

4.1 Safety of Life at Sea ( SOLAS )

M.A Masellis and S.W.A.A Gunn ( 1992 ) said that fire casualties on ships lead about surely to black consequences because of the limited and stray countries of the vass and the deficiency of immediate and easy entree for the deliverance squad. Preventive steps are hence much more effectual in the attempt to avoid such casualties than deliverance and fire-extinguishing processs or devices. [ Marine fire casualties in merchandiser ships: the Grecian statistics 1992 Available from: hypertext transfer protocol: // ]

In 1914, The International Maritime Organisation had a convention among international leaders and maritime leaders to speak about maritime safety. Of all the international conventions covering with nautical safety, the most of import is the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea ( SOLAS ) . There have been many versions of SOLAS adopted by the International Maritime Organisation but the present version was adopted in 1974 and entered into force in 1980.The SOLAS conventions have all covered many facets of safety at sea. The convention in 1914 included chapters on safety of pilotage, building, fire protection and life-saving contraptions. ( International Maritime Organisation 2009 )

This shows that the International Maritime Organisation is invariably seeking to happen ways to better the facets of safety at sea to guarantee the safety of mariners ‘ life by presenting the Safety Of Life at Sea ( SOLAS ) and updating it.

4.2 Fire Safety Test and Safety Equipment

One of the fire safety steps is to carry on fire safety trial for the ship. Fire safety of ships is an highly of import country. Before any stuff can be used onboard a ship, it must hold successfully passed rigorous trials and have been certified for usage. This is to guarantee that the stuff or equipment does non present a fire jeopardy onboard the ship. ( SP Technical Research Institute of Sweden 2008 )

Another safety step is to put in safety equipments on the ship. Equipments such as fire asphyxiator, sprinkler system, gas proctor and other safety equipments are being implemented. The International Maritime Organisation ( IMO ) is taking stairss to present new and more sophisticated equipments onboard the ships. IMO hope to cut down the sum of accidents from happening onboard the ship and will trust on this new equipments to battle the job more expeditiously.

4.3 Service of ships and Equipments

Harmonizing to The Safety of Life At Sea 1974 edition, the ship and its safety equipments have to undergo service one time every few old ages. Safety equipments include constituents that can deteriorate over clip. Therefore, this can diminish the effectivity of the equipment. Examples of such equipments stated in the Safety Of Life At Sea 1974 edition ( SOLAS ) are fire asphyxiators, EPIRBs, flares, life jackets, life tonss and fume signals. Servicing of the equipment must be done by the maker or an authorized agent by the termination day of the month. The termination day of the month must be clearly marked on the equipment. Most life raft needs to be serviced every two or three old ages. Equipment that can non be serviced or no longer works must be replaced if it is to be carried as portion of the safety equipment onboard the ship. ( The International Maritime Organisation 2009 )

In the event that an exigency were to happen and the safety equipments were to be faulty as they were non sent for service, the maker should non be blamed as the termination day of the month have been stated clearly on the equipment. It is the responsibility of the crew onboard and its proprietor to direct the equipments for serving one time the termination day of the month is over.

Harmonizing to the IMO 2009, care and reviews of equipments must be recorded to supply nonsubjective grounds that these work have been carried out harmonizing to the maker ‘s instructions.

4.4 Proper preparation for the crew

Harmonizing to the Maritime Port Authority Singapore ( MPA ) 2010, Seafarers working on board a ship must hold the valid enfranchisement or indorsements. In Singapore, these are issued by the Training Standards Department of MPA. Seafarers working on board a ship are required to hold a valid Certificate of Competency ( CoC ) or indorsement, which comply with the International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers ( STCW ) .

The crew must besides be good trained in fire combat and First Aid. Those who wish to work onboard a ship must hold an Advance Fire Fighting Course certification and Elementary First Aid certification every bit good before they are qualified to work onboard ( Maritime Port Authority Singapore 2010 ) . The crew will besides carry on regular safety drills after each going from port. The crew are to follow their responsibility that had been assigned on the Muster List.

By holding proper trained crews onboard a ship, this will understate the opportunity of human mistake and accidents from happening. Furthermore, the crew are good trained to manage any exigencies such as fire. The International Maritime Organisation ( IMO ) 2009 one time said that the quality and familiarization are straight affected by the frequence and quality of the drills carried out. IMO added that a crew debrief after each drill is indispensable to underscore lessons learned and to give extra preparation where necessary.

5. Decision

5.1 Further Improvements

Every twelvemonth, the International Maritime Organisation and other Maritime Body are working manus in manus to better a mariners life in footings of their life status and to guarantee that they are working in a safe environment. The administration are seeking to happen changeless betterment to cut down Marine casualties, loss in gross due to unwanted accidents. One betterment that can be introduce to the ship is the All-in-One fire asphyxiator. This asphyxiator would be able to battle any types of fire such as Class A, Class B, Class C or Class D fires. By holding this fire extinguisher onboard the ship, the crew will non necessitate to blow clip to happen different methods to battle different types of fire. Another betterment that could be introduced is the fire isolating system. This system will insulate the fire from distributing to other suites and this will cut down the harm caused towards the ship. The Maritime Port Authority said that this new innovations will farther better the safety facets but it still needs to undergo more trials before it can be implemented towards the ships.

5.2 Human Error is still the Main Cause

The International Maritime Organisation have taken stairss to guarantee that the engineering and safety equipments being implemented are up to day of the month. Even thought this is so, nil can be done if the accident caused is by human mistake. Even if the crew had gone for proper preparation, human mistake will still happen. An article by B.S Dhillon ( 2007 ) , human mistake costs the Maritime Industry $ 541 million per twelvemonth and a survey of 6091 major accident claims revealed that 62 % of the claims were attributed to human mistake. B.S Dhillion ( 2007 ) added that human mistake contributes to 84 % to 88 % of oiler accidents.

[ B.S Dhillon 2007. Human Reliability and Error in Transportation Systems, Springer Series in Reliability Engineering. Page 1. ]

These incidents will ensue in crew hurts or decease and the ship will be delayed or damaged. Even if there is mechanical failure, human mistake can play a function in footings of deficiency of care, monitoring or a dislocation in communicating. The Bahamas Maritime Authority added that crew weariness and complacence can be a major factor in this incident. The Bahamas Maritime Authority said that “ Good equipment can be more, but safety should be accorded a higher precedence because a ship can non be operated safely without the mariner. ”