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Drills Preparing for Onboard Emergencies

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[MUSIC PLAYING] Shipboard drills have always been critical to maritime safety. But now, with heightened concerns about shipboard security, well-trained, well-drilled officers and crews are more important than ever. Hello, all crew. We have a fire in the foc'sle. All crew, fire in the [INAUDIBLE]. The anxiety and confusion of an emergency can cause panic, mistakes, and misunderstanding. A well-drilled ship's company can avoid these mistakes. Emergency procedures and communications can save lives. I think the thing that the Coast Guard is most important is safety. And drills are what, is how a boat is safe. Ability to respond to emergency situations. And the Coast Guard takes that serious. And if you're in port and you're doing a drill for the Coast Guard and your equipment doesn't work or your crew's not competent, you can probably expect that you're going to be held in port until you can fix those things and prove to the Coast Guard that your vessel's safe to operate in our waters. Both SOLAS and STCW, the principal marine conventions of the IMO, require regular drills and training. Local Port State Control may require unannounced drills from a ship's crew, and individual shipping companies may require specific drills as well. [INAUDIBLE] here stop the product flow. One personnel shut off ignition sources, contain and control spill, which is what we're going to be concerned with today. Effective drills take planning. They need to be regular but not routine. They may take place as tabletop simulations, or require muster and action by the crew. There are four key components to conducting shipboard drills. First, planning effectively. Second, conducting the drill. Third, debriefing, evaluating your results and your lessons learned. And fourth, record-keeping, recording those results. Obviously, people planning drills, you can add a lot of variety. Different locations, different scenarios. Maybe remove a crew member that's critical to the actual response. Use some visual aids. Smoke. You know, try to throw some variety so that's it's not the same mundane sort of behavior going through the motions. It really tests the crew's ability to think on their feet and respond to changing circumstances. Effective planning means creating varied and realistic emergency scenarios involving as many people as possible and coordinating carefully with the ship's regular schedule. Our main function out here is to move cargo from point A to point B. And we're not firemen. We're not rescue people. But again, if something happens on our ship, we need to be able to do something, and hopefully do it well. So we do need the drills. Often, it's the chief mate who coordinates safety responsibilities and helps plan ongoing drills. Certain drills are only mandated once a month, but the best ships drill as often as once a week, and whenever there are significant changes in crew. Good planning requires one or more drill scenarios. A scenario is an outline, like the plot of a movie or a play. Your drill scenarios are what you're going to set up to make your drills more realistic, more challenging, and more than simply routine. Effective scenarios require variations on standard procedures, whether it's fire, man overboard, or security procedures. They are sequenced, a series of steps and contingencies. If A, then B, then C. And they usually involve an element of surprise or a challenge. Right now what I want to show you guys is a method. Some of you may know this or not. How you can, how one person can maintain and apply water with a 2 and 1/2 inch line just by himself. Now, what he's doing-- Stay alert for possible drill scenarios as you go about your normal duties. The best scenarios begin in routine, familiar situations, then add a twist, a complication, a mistake, that turns the ordinary into the extraordinary. Well, you know, lifeboat drills are tough because it's-- I mean, abandon ship is kind of abandon ship. But you can throw a wrench in there and have a crew member that's responsible for running the brake, maybe. Maybe they're injured, and they can't do it. So you have to try to compensate for that loss. Fire drills, aw man. Unlimited possibilities there. You can use smoke. You can pick different locations. Different classes of fire. A lot of times people just use alpha fires, and really there are bravo fires. You can have electrical fire. Use some of your different equipment. Don't always use the fire pumps. Maybe use extinguishers to try to fight a fire. And so forth. Here's a sample scenario called "Fire in the Hold." Smoke is reported coming from the starboard cargo hold vent. Crews muster and turnout. Hose teams are readied in advance to secure vents. Throughout the process, information is being relayed to the ship's master. There is a simulated release of carbon dioxide after the crew is re-mustered. Boundaries are identified and checked for radiant heat and sources of combustion. Hose teams are directed where needed. Be sure to indicate the equipment to be used in your scenarios. Once the drill has been planned and the scenario decided on, the drill is scheduled, with the approval of the master, of course. Then notice is given that a drill will be held so it won't be confused with a real emergency. And at the given time, it's show time. Drills can be combined to achieve the most realistic scenarios. A fire drill and a search-and-rescue drill, for instance, or other combinations. We're not trained firefighters. We're not trained rescue people. But if anything happens on the ship, it's our shipmates and it's our ship, and we can do things aboard. The equipment's gotten better, the fire-fighting ability on ships has gotten better, and the company has been supportive in giving us more and more equipment. But it's no good if we don't train with it, and the only way to train with that is with drills. So having weekly drills helps considerably. Some tips for effective drills. First and foremost, safety must be the first priority in every drill or emergency. We don't want the practice emergency to become a real emergency. Effective drills test the individual emergency duties for each crew member. A good scenario will involve everyone. They test critical communication among the bridge, the muster stations, the site of the emergency, and support groups on shore. Communication is key to coordinating everyone's activities. Effective drills check the status of all emergency supplies and operate the emergency equipment. Equipment must be ready when it's needed, and people must know how to use it. And finally, drills can be effectively supplemented with tabletop simulations to work out problems and establish better procedures. Tabletop scenarios can be more elaborate and complicated. This is the sea painter, and it's on the-- it's tied off. And as the ship goes through the water, it'll put pressure on that sea painter. If you just use the rudder, it'll move the boat away from the side of the ship, which is what you'll need to do to the use the oars if you needed to. But we want to-- Perhaps the most important learning step of all is the debriefing that follows the drill. What went poorly, what went well, lessons learned. --we move the lifeboat away from the ship. At the end of a drill, you should take some time, sit down with the team. What went well? What didn't go well? Those things that didn't go well, you incorporate your next drill. Make it focus around those areas. Maybe try to emphasize that so that people can work on strengthening those weak points in their emergency response. Debriefing should be open and candid. This is not a process for laying blame. It is a process for continuous improvement. You record what happened and what you learn in two important places. The ship's safety officer should keep a written record of all drills and all training activity, and an official report of each drill and its principal highlights must be recorded in the ship's log. Good records ensure that lessons learned are recorded so overall corporate knowledge and skills can be improved. They document a regular schedule of safety training, and they offer available proof to Port State Control authorities that drills have been conducted. Conducting effective shipboard drills accomplishes a lot more than simply fulfilling the rules and regulations. A well-drilled crew communicates better, is more productive, and is sensitive [INAUDIBLE] can keep accidents from happening in the first place. Four final thoughts. To be most effective in shipboard drills, set the most realistic scenarios you can. Work on them. Perfect them. Critique them. Whenever possible, conduct your drills while you're underway, not in port, for more realism. Rotate the times of your drills so all crew members can eventually participate. And finally, to be most effective, drill specifically to your own mission, climate, and working environment. Be specific, not generic. Good luck with your own shipboard drills. Just remember the basics. Be creative, be open to feedback, and encouragement maximum participation. Thanks for your attention. [MUSIC PLAYING]

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Duration: 11 minutes and 58 seconds
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Language: English
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Posted by: maritimetraining on Apr 25, 2018

Drills Preparing for Onboard Emergencies

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