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It's a tragic story told one too many times. A routine maintenance project ends with fatal results and yet was completely preventable if only the proper procedures had been followed. Entering a confined space on board a vessel, if all guidelines and rules are followed, can be an uneventful task, but it remains one of the most common sources of Maritime fatalities. New amendments to the International Convention of Safety of Life at Sea, or SOLAS, address the hazards of confined space entry with the aim of eliminating fatalities. In this program, we'll learn about the new amendments to SOLAS governing confined space entry drills, including how often drills are to be held, what procedures need to be covered, best practices for staging drills, and what kind of PPE is required for both drills and rescues. We'll also take a look at the new SOLAS requirements for atmospheric testing equipment, how the equipment checks for hazardous environments, and how to use and test the equipment. Preparing for emergencies, which by their nature are unpredictable, requires regular preparation through the staging of drills. SOLAS regulations now in place require all crews with confined space entry or rescue responsibilities to practice a confined space entry drill every two months. In order to meet statutory guidelines, each drill must consist of examination and use of personal protective equipment required for entry, examination and use of communications equipment and procedures, checking and use of instruments for measuring the atmosphere in enclosed spaces, examination and use of rescue equipment and procedures, and instructions in first aid and resuscitation techniques. As with all drills or work procedures, be sure to consult your company's SMS and appropriate job hazard analysis for proper PPE. In most cases, a confined space entry permit will be required, even though it's a drill. Having the proper inventory of personal protective equipment before the drill begins is essential. Your company should keep a checklist of all PPE required for confined space entry and rescue operations. Determine ahead of time what is required and what is optional equipment. Items can include hard hats, gloves, safety lines, flashlights, radio sets, personal gas monitors, a resuscitator, SCBA sets, and EEBD, tank rescued davit, fall arresters, and a first aid kit. Be sure to check your company's SMS as well as your confined space entry permit for more requirements. A way to ensure successful drills, as well as making sure your rescue team is ready for a real life emergency, is to determine ahead of time what are the rescue requirements. You want to make sure that everyone is familiar with the equipment that they're putting on. A good idea is-- and especially if you're doing drills-- is breaking out that equipment occasionally, going through the whole routine. So this way when you do have an event, everyone knows what to put on, what to gear up for. There's not a lot of lag time waiting around. Complete familiarization with company confined space entry requirements and procedures is the first step. Knowing all requirements prior to starting the drill will help ensure your team is practicing proper procedures. Was the space assessed before initial entry? Are there known hazards such as cargo or fuel residue? Are there structures, machinery, or equipment which presents immediate hazards or could slow or prevent a rescue? Can the worker be rescued simply by winching them up on the retrieval line, a non-entry rescue? Or will a responder have to enter the space to retrieve them? If non-entry rescue is the preferred method, but circumstances prevent that, do you have a backup plan for entry rescue? Is the proper PPE for entry rescue on hand, and has it been tested? Has your rescue team studied the scenario? Are they prepared to improvise? In order to reduce the risk of death and injury from confined space entry accidents, the International Maritime Organization has adopted new rules requiring every vessel to carry an atmospheric testing device or devices. At a minimum, these devices need to be able to detect and display concentrations of oxygen, flammable gases or vapors down to 1% of the lower explosion of flammability limit, carbon monoxide, and hydrogen sulfide. Multi-gas detection devices use a variety of sensors to be able to detect a range of gases and vapors. The manufacturer of the device recommended in your company's SMS, a job hazard analysis process, will provide instructions on how to use and calibrate the device. Many units have automated calibrating features. Typically, these devices consists of the unit body, a display, controls, a pump, a sample hose, and sensors. Many also contain alarm settings designed to activate at levels programmed into it. These levels should be based on the limits set by the flag state administration, or other applicable regulatory bodies, if the flag administration does not have guidance on the subject. The handheld multi-gas detection monitor is designed to provide accurate results with minimal training. Consult your company's SMS, as well as the manufacturer's instructions, for proper start up operations. Typically, each meter comes with a sampling hose which allows you to sample the confined space prior to entry. Consult the manufacturer's manual for the maximum length of hose that can be used with the unit. Manufacturers and regulatory agencies typically recommend a daily bump test. In a bump test, a span, or sample gas, should be introduced into the meter in a high enough concentration to make the sensor values move and trigger all alarms below the alarm point. Doing this on a daily basis will ensure the meter is always working correctly and will help prevent entry into a dangerous environment. Manufacturers also recommend performing a periodic calibration of the unit. In a calibration, a span or simple gas is introduced into the unit, and the sensors can be adjusted and reset to ensure that the sensors are reading the same gas levels as prescribed on the calibration gas bottle. There are a variety of gas detection meters available, and many manufacturers have calibration stations that can be purchased for the unit, which will allow for automated bump testing and calibration. Bump testing and calibration is an extremely important part of using any gas detection instrument. In this program, we learned about the new amendments to SOLAS calling for regular confined space entry drills, including how often drills are to be held, what procedures need to be covered, best practices for staging drills, and what kind of equipment and PPE is required for both drills and rescues. We also took a look at the new SOLAS requirement requiring every vessel to carry an atmosphere testing device, how the device checks for hazardous environments, and how to use, test, and store the device. With proper care and planning, as well as strict adherence to regulations governing confined space entry, more needless accidents can be prevented. In this industry, we all work together. Some of us have family that work with us. And when you see a man down inside a tank, your first reaction is to go down there and save him. That's what's killing rescue workers. So go through your steps. Make sure that your space is in fact safe for entry before you go in because it will kill you.

Video Details

Duration: 9 minutes and 26 seconds
Language: English
License: Dotsub - Standard License
Genre: None
Views: 5
Posted by: maritimetraining on Feb 8, 2017


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