Safety Alert: Recognizing Fire Hazards & Proper Cargo Stowage
Following recent RoRo vessel fires, ICHCA and our partners have continued discussing fire hazards & proper cargo stowage.
This has included factors associated with the transport of previously owned vehicles such as personal goods and combustibles stored within vehicles, vehicles leaking fluids and failure to protect batteries from short circuit. These are three ‘causal factors’ identified by the US Coast Guard with reference to the Hoegh Xiamen fire in the linked alert below.
The USCG Alert notes that there were ‘numerous vehicles throughout the vessel’ that were not in compliance with onboard requirements. These included:
- ammunition found in a vehicle trunk
- leaking fuel from a vehicle
- paint and cardboard in a vehicle trunk
- a heavily corroded battery with terminals still connected
In the Alert, the Coast Guard reminds vessel owners, operators, charterers, and business entities engaged in shipping of vehicles on vessels of requirements to:
- Protect vehicle batteries against short circuiting, for example by disconnecting the battery if appropriate
- Remove all personal and combustible material from vehicles prior to loading them onto a vessel
- Inspect and remove leaking vehicles from the vessel prior to sailing and do no permit vehicles known to be leaking to be loaded onto the vessel
- Verify receiving guidelines of shippers and charterers are in alignment with the IMDG Code to include fuel levels prior to loading.
FOR THE FULL REPORT CLICK HERE: https://www.dco.uscg.mil/Portals/9/DCO%20Documents/5p/CG-5PC/INV/Alerts/USCGSA_0620.pdf?ver=xCH0DFqOQ6MstXV33cFKog%3d%3d
ICHCA International is committed to helping industry to learn lessons fast, learn them once and make sure that they stay learnt. This information is intended to provide all organisations in the cargo supply chain with the opportunity to consider the events and to review and adapt their own health and safety control measures to proactively prevent future incidents.
We are grateful to the US Coast Guard for providing details. We acknowledge their commitment to sharing learning to benefit others. If you have similar operations, please share this information with managers, operatives and any potentially affected third parties as appropriate. Please also review any of your relevant operations for similar hazardous conditions, risks, and controls. Learning content like this is highly valuable as it is based on real-world experience. We encourage everyone with publishable information about incidents to send it to us, so that we can raise awareness across the whole industry. Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org; sharing your insight could save a life or prevent injury.