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Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority stresses safety in shipyards

Enforcing safety practices The Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA) has stressed the importance of safety for companies in the maritime and shipbuilding sector in the free port.SBMA director Norberto Sosa, a marine and terminal operations expert, stressed that local firms should exert extra efforts to keep the industry safe and help erase the image as a disaster-prone country."We are being known for maritime disasters. I do not want that to continue. There should be visible management commitment to safety," he told representatives of maritime firms here."There are lessons to be learned in recent accidents in the shipbuilding industry, particularly the tragedy that struck the Keppel shipyard in Subic, Zambales, he said.Sosal also emphasized that business locators in the Subic Bay Freeport should place safety on equal footing with business objectives.A committee has been organized by the SBMA to conduct safety inspections of the different shipyards and drydocks in the free port.Director Wilfredo Pineda has assured locators that SBMA has done its part in enforcing safety practices, as the Subic Bay Freeport now hosts several shipbuilding and repair companies, including Hanjin Heavy Industries, Co., Ltd., the fourth largest shipbuilder in the world.Source: Manila Bulletin

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ITF acts to secure worker safety over potentially contaminated reefers

Concern continues over potentially dangerous reefer containers The ITF is taking action to protect the health and safety of port workers and seafarers as concern continues over potentially dangerous reefer containers.Some 900 refrigerated units were withdrawn by shipping line Maersk last month after three fatalities were linked to maintenance work carried out on containers in Vietnam.Although as yet unconfirmed, it's thought that some reefers may have been topped up with contaminated gas causing them to be potentially explosive under certain conditions.ITF affiliates across dockers, seafarers and road and rail sections, have been informed of the potential risk attached to these units and are being advised to follow up with their local health and safety authorities.ITF dockers' section secretary Frank Leys said: "We are pleased to see that big shipping lines like Maersk have reacted quickly to this situation and we would join our US affiliate, the International Longshore and Warehouse Union, in urging any companies or organisations who haven't already taken steps to alleviate this risk, to follow suit now."Seafarers' section secretary Jon Whitlow added: "We are extremely concerned for the welfare of those workers on ships who may be unaware that a defective container is being carried on board."Whilst ...

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RBG launches iBolt software to improve flange management safety

It improves the safety, efficiency and cost-effectiveness of bolting operations RBG has launched its new 'iBolt' flange integrity management software that improves the safety, efficiency and cost-effectiveness of bolting operations.Theeasy to use, web-based system provides a complete auditable record of all activity carried out on flange management workscopes from topside to subsea. Maintaining a historical database and tracking an asset's activity means trends, such as corrosion or erosion, can be identified early and preventive maintenance can be delivered. This helps ensure a safe operating environment and no loss of containment that requires costly shutdowns and repairs.An iBolt calculator application, available for Apple/Windows/Android devices, is incorporated in the system and delivers on-the-job safety benefits by calculating the correct torque and tension loads when using various lubricants. The friction coefficient of lubricants can vary greatly and the incorrect application of the lubricants to the threads of the bolts and the nut load bearing face can lead to over torquing levels that can potentially yield the bolts, over compress the gasket and distort the flange joint, all of which can lead to a loss of integrity that can endanger the operative or result in a hydrocarbon release.RBG's mechanical services team in the UKCS ...

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Urgent warning on explosive containers

Three deaths globally and numerous injuries and burns As thousands of potentially explosive shipping containers circulate the globe, Pacific Maritime Association (PMA) executives are rejecting the International Longshore and Warehouse Union's (ILWU) calls for safety procedures designed to protect workers on the docks and keep at-risk containers out of U.S. communities.The PMA wants to limit the isolation of refrigerated containers (also known as "reefers") to those imports only that have transited Kat Lai, Vietnam, in the past year. The ILWU wants to isolate all reefers that have transited any part of Vietnam in 2011.Despite the fact that PMA has known for over nine months that thousands of contaminated reefers are circulating among its member companies' reefer fleets, the danger to health and safety did not become public until October 2011 after three workers were killed by explosions while servicing contaminated reefers.Following the three fatalities, Maersk Inc., a PMA member company, informed the World Shipping Council's Safe Transport of Containers Working Group that reefers coming from Southeast Asia had exploded for no apparent reason.Experts in the shipping industry have known since spring that counterfeit or imitation refrigerant is being used by vendors in Vietnam to service reefers. This fake refrigerant reacts ...

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Canada introduces regulations to require voyage data recorders on large Canadian vessels

Voyage Data Recorder Regulations for marine safety The Honourable DenisLebel, Minister of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities, today announced that under new regulations, certain large passenger and cargo vessels will be required to have voyage data recorders. Similar to an airplane's black box, the equipment captures critical information to help investigations into accidents at sea."The safety of vessels is a priority for our government and we are committed to making continuous enhancements in marine safety," said MinisterLebel. "Should an accident occur, information from a vessel's voyage data recorder can be used to help investigators learn more quickly and more thoroughly the cause and what can be done to help prevent a reoccurrence."The Voyage Data Recorder Regulations will require, as of January1,2012, that new passenger vessels of 500gross tonnage or more and new cargo vessels of 3,000gross tonnage or more not engaged on an international voyage be fitted with voyage data recorders. Owners of existing passenger vessels have until July1,2015, to install the equipment, depending on their inspection schedule. The new safety measure addresses a Transportation Safety Board recommendation highlighted in its Watchlist earlier this year.The regulations also implement the voyage data recorder requirements under the International Convention for the Safety of ...

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LR to produce timely technical advice and help ensure the safer use of lifting appliances

New pocket guide includes guidance for inspecting deck cranes, derricks and life-saving davits Lloyd's Register has published a new pocket guide to help ship owners and operators understand the importance of professional maintenance and survey preparation for marine lifting appliances.The new guide -- Survey and Examination of Ships' Lifting Appliances -- is the latest in Lloyd's Register's acclaimed and popular series of pocket guides that have been produced in conjunction with the UK P&I Club and, in this case, with the crane manufacturers, MacGregor and Liebherr."Lifting appliances need to be thoroughly examined and it is important that operators understand the seriousness and consequences of failure, as well as what they need to do to support the safety framework," Joanna Townsend, Fleet Services Manager for Lloyd's Register, said. "Poor preparation before surveys is a common problem among operators. Other issues include a lack of knowledge about rocking tests, difficulties in obtaining maintenance records and problems accessing the key areas that need to be surveyed.""These are key safety issues," said Townsend. "This pocket guide has been designed so that it is handy to use, inexpensive to produce and will be free to the industry. We highly recommend its use."The rocking test is ...

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East Sea security and safety need upping

United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea - for maritime security and safety in the East Sea Delegates attending an international workshop in Ha Noi have underlined the role of the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) in curbing and managing threats to maritime security and safety in the East Sea.They shared the same view that disputes related to the East Sea were becoming more complicated as concerned parties had yet to find a common voice in efforts to settle differences.Tensions had escalated over the East Sea, the location of important shipping routes and large fisheries resources, as countries involved in territorial disputes had increased military spending to modernise their force, speakers at the workshop noted.They said UNCLOS could be applied to clarify sovereignty claims, thus restricting the seizure and construction of buildings in disputed areas and creating a legal basis for claims over territorial waters.The Law of the Sea should be considered an effective tool to protect interests among relevant sides and the most important basis for discussions. The relevant parties needed to strictly implement the UNCLOS in internal and external affairs related to the East Sea, the delegates said.Delegates and scholars ...

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Quick-release evacuation system launched

y Viking Life-Saving Equipment is launching a 153-person liferaft and mini slide system Marine safety equipment company Viking Life-Saving Equipment is launching a 153-person liferaft and mini slide system, packed in a single aluminum stowage box and launched by a single push-button actuator.Named the VAS (Viking automatic slide), the system is designed and certified for vessels on domestic voyages such as ferries sailing in protected waters. The VAS is designed for evacuation heights of 1.5m to 3.65m, with inflation started automatically by pushing a button on the stowage box or on the bridge. Automatic bowsing keeps the slide and raft close alongside the ship to assist ease of disembarking, and the system requires no external power supply for deploymentThe VAS is contained in a box that is placed flush with the ship side, and bolted to the deck, so can be easily installed or retrofitted. The system is then ready to go, with no bowsing lines or welded connection points on the side of the ship's side being necessary.The system gained approval on sea trial with significant wave height of 1.5m with DNV as notified body. The liferaft is EC type-approved (EC Directive 96/98/EC with DNV as the notified body) ...

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BSEE Holds Workshop on Deepwater Oil and Gas Operations

Insights on the effects of water depth on oil and gas operations The Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement's (BSEE) yesterday concluded a two-day workshop that brought together experts from the oil and gas industry, and drilling and supply contractors to share information and insights on the effects of water depth on oil and gas operations. This type of information sharing was recommended by the Interior Department's Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) Safety Oversight Board in its September 2010 Report."It is critical that we obtain input from industry experts about the range of unique challenges presented by operating in deep water," said BSEE Director Michael R. Bromwich. "We will continue to follow-up on the insights and recommendations raised at this week's discussion so that we can better meet the special challenges of deepwater, and ensure that oil and gas in deep water is explored and developed in the most safe and environmentally responsible manner."The workshop drew approximately 140 people including oil and gas operators, drilling contractors, service and supply contractors, and BSEE personnel. Attendees focused on six areas of deepwater operations: well control with surface blowout preventers; well control with subsea blowout preventers; well drilling and completion design and barriers; pre-incident ...

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The Standard P&I Club issues the Standard Cargo Carriage of Seedcake

The safe and correct carraige of seedcake cargo The Standard P&I Club issues the Standard Cargo Carriage of Seedcake.This edition of Standard Cargo addresses the safe and correct carraige of seedcake cargo. Due to their oil and moisture content, this cargo can present a significant fire risk due to self-heating and spontaneous combustion therefore: the procedures described here should be followed in order to prevent such casualties.For more information, click here.Source: The Standard P&I Club

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