What to Do ? Fire on the ship while in port.

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TDC
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What to Do ? Fire on the ship while in port.

Postby TDC » Fri Oct 13, 2017 8:21 am

Good Day all,
An interesting topic came up today so I thought I would throw it out for some discussion.
What involvement should the ships crew have to fight a fire while the ship is docked in port?
Should it be the same as while the vessel is at sea.

At sea we risk our lives to fight fires to save ourselves and our crew. Its survival, plain and simple. There is no other option only to abandon which is also high risk depending on circumstance.
In the Port, we have a fire on one side of us and a gangway on the other. At this point the risks are similar but now we are risking our lives to save an asset, an insured asset rather than save ourselves.

When is the decision to go down the gangway? Is it when all other options are exhausted as we would do at sea? Is it when the fire ext doesn't work and we have to send crew members in as fire teams? At what point is risking your life not worth the reward of saving a ship.

I am inclined to think if a fire cannot be control with a fire ext , you call the local fire department and get of the ship. I always thought this was the normal procedure in port , the fire department would come and take over the scene. However now I have heard of a case where a city fire department will only support and back up the ships fire team due to lack of training for marine vessels. So back to my original question
What to do?
TDC

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Re: What to Do ? Fire on the ship while in port.

Postby Revolver » Fri Oct 13, 2017 6:47 pm

St.John's fire department are trained for vessel fires.
They make a point to specifically do the training and visit a ship a handful of times per year.
That being said, they need instruction and help from ships crew as per specifics of the vessel.

They are professionals. Call them. Their BAs will last a lot longer than ours heh

What to do?
Maybe you can charge the fire line and "safely" attack the fire.
Is it in the engine room? Hopefully that can be an easy one.

Bottom line. Mitigate risks. We're not professional fire fighters. People's lives are #1.
Let the fucker burn before you let some fuckers burn. LoL

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Merlyn
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Re: What to Do ? Fire on the ship while in port.

Postby Merlyn » Sat Oct 14, 2017 4:51 am

The gangway beckons
Remembering The Good Old days, when Chiefs stood watches and all Torque settings were F.T.

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D Winsor
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Re: What to Do ? Fire on the ship while in port.

Postby D Winsor » Sat Oct 14, 2017 8:12 am

I guess it depends on the circumstances ie. if the vessel is operational or laid up.

The way I understand it, if the vessel is operational the Master remains ultimately responsible for the vessel and the safety of the crew. The Master then becomes or delegates responsibility to the Chief Mate or Chief Engineer to that of "On Scene Commander". The On Scene Commander will then direct and or advise the professional firefighters, with the aid of the vessels Firefighting Plan, devise a plan to attack and extinguish the fire. The On Scene Commander will also provide details on the status of the vessel, internal resources available to fight the fire such as fixed smothering systems, availability of ship supplied water & fire extinguishing materials, cargo petroleum products and other hazardous materials in vicinity of the fire and surrounding compartments and if necessary and available provide crew support in aiding the professional firefighters maneuver through alleyways, stairs and ladders when attacking the fire.

When a vessel is Laid-up and there are few if any crew on board the professional firefighters are ultimately in command of fighting the fire. However any crewmember or shore based contractor that is on the vessel and is familiar with vessel's layout may be tasked with aiding the firefighters in their efforts to attack the fire.
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Big Pete
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Re: What to Do ? Fire on the ship while in port.

Postby Big Pete » Sun Oct 15, 2017 7:01 am

I agree with D. Winsor, the Master is always responsible if the ship is operational. If it is laid up, unmanned or with a skeleton crew, I think I would be straight down the gangway if the natives were friendly, however, in some Countries, and with some ship owners you would not want to rely on someone finding you accommodation and repatriating you.
All professional fire fighters will be better trained and equipped to fight fires than we are, but very few will have any in depth knowledge of fire fighting on board ships, or the layout and construction of ships.
Some Fire Brigades around the World do try to familiarise themselves with Merchant Ships and train for fighting fires on board ships, others do not.
The ships Senior Officers will have to forge a working relationship with the Senior Fire Brigade Officers and gain mutual understanding of their knowledge and capabilities a.s.a.p. in order to be able to effectively fight the fire.
One of the biggest dangers in fighting fires, particularly in PAX, RO Ros and Ferries is the danger of the free surface effect of the water used to fight the fire causing the ship to capsize, and that is an area that no Fire Brigade understands and the ship's Officers will have to continually monitor and discuss with the Fire Brigade. Language difficulties permitting.

Co operating with a shore side Fire Brigade is something that should be made the topic of a "Table Top" Drill on board at regular intervals and if you can contact local fire brigades they may welcome the chance to come on board and train with you. If anyone has enough spare time in Port to carry drills anymore!
The fact that you are thinking about this and talking informally about this on board is very good.

BP
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JollyJack
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Re: What to Do ? Fire on the ship while in port.

Postby JollyJack » Sun Oct 15, 2017 11:04 am

The effect of free surface was demonstrated very well on the Queen Elizabeth in Hong Kong Harbour in the early 70s. She had been bought by a Chinese and renamed "Seawise University", intended to be a floating school. The project ran into financial trouble and 36 fires, on 10 decks, broke out all along the ship's length. The local tugs and fireboats started to pour tonnes of water onto the ship until eventually, she tipped over and laid on her side. I was flying to Tokyo to join a ship and saw the sad sight of a once magnificent Queen of the Atlantic lying in the harbour as we touched down.
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Big Pete
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Re: What to Do ? Fire on the ship while in port.

Postby Big Pete » Mon Oct 16, 2017 12:20 am

I remember reading about that at the time " C. Y. Tung" was asked a lot of questions, ("Sea Wise " was a pun on C. Y.) I don't think he ever gave answers though!

BP
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JK
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Re: What to Do ? Fire on the ship while in port.

Postby JK » Mon Oct 16, 2017 6:32 am

Foam. lots of foam.

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Big Pete
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Re: What to Do ? Fire on the ship while in port.

Postby Big Pete » Mon Oct 16, 2017 10:19 am

Yes JK, But what do you do if your Fire Main is all Frozen up?

BP
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Merlyn
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Re: What to Do ? Fire on the ship while in port.

Postby Merlyn » Tue Oct 17, 2017 6:45 am

Make the ultimate sacrifice.
Donate all your stored beer.
I always get foamy stuff so should work.
Remembering The Good Old days, when Chiefs stood watches and all Torque settings were F.T.

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JollyJack
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Re: What to Do ? Fire on the ship while in port.

Postby JollyJack » Wed Oct 18, 2017 8:39 am

Bugger off rapidly to the nearest pub! Let the Pros deal with it!
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Merlyn
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Re: What to Do ? Fire on the ship while in port.

Postby Merlyn » Thu Oct 19, 2017 1:31 am

Second that and would be on the second hangover when the last flame went out.
Remembering The Good Old days, when Chiefs stood watches and all Torque settings were F.T.

TDC
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Re: What to Do ? Fire on the ship while in port.

Postby TDC » Mon Oct 23, 2017 6:39 am

Thanks for the discussion.
And remember I never said SJFD, I was speaking in a general term, I am sure they are very good and professional not my intention to single out any one party. Further I guess is it even relevant? what they do or don't do does not make it right to increase the amount of risk to crew to save the ship?
Of course each situation is different, and does require the master discretion. But the N0.1 most important piece to remember is safety of life . At sea there is no question , the crew are safer on the ship so it makes sense to do everything in your power to fight the fire. In the port the safest place is down the gangway. Everyone I have discuss this with has the immediate response to do everything that we can to fight the fire as it is our ship which of course is admirable , but after some second thought it became a more of a down the gangway. Any way thanks for the discussion

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Merlyn
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Re: What to Do ? Fire on the ship while in port.

Postby Merlyn » Mon Oct 23, 2017 7:53 am

Top Dead Centre, What about Mr MAN?

Let us all see if how many of us can swallow how much of the verdict, you never know when we think we have heard it all before we might learn a new reason for your CR defects.
Wager it's not Mr MAN 's fault?
Remembering The Good Old days, when Chiefs stood watches and all Torque settings were F.T.

TDC
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Re: What to Do ? Fire on the ship while in port.

Postby TDC » Mon Oct 23, 2017 8:48 am

Stand by, will update the CR issues soon. I wouldn't put too much on that bet.


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