Why do tankers keep exploding?

chemical tanker explosionIn spite of ever-increasing safety regulations, explosion incidents on tankers still happen. Any explosion risk has three prerequisites: flammable material, oxygen and an ignition source. Take away (at least) one to achieve safety.

According to SOLAS requirements any tanker newbuilding > 8000dwt since 2016 has to have an inert gas system installed which reduces the oxygen concentration to safe levels. Before it was > 20,000 dwt. However, there is no requirement to retrofit IG systems to existing pre-2016 tankers, which means they are frequently subject to hazardous conditions.

In the Riviera Maritime Media article, “Why do tankers keep exploding?”, Dean Crossley, Loss Prevention Manager at WEST P&I Club recommends retrofitting IG systems to ALL tankers, oil & chemical, old and new ones, incl. those < 8000 dwt. However, retrofitting an IG system is nearly impossible for technical reasons, if not economic. NanoVapor may be a cost-efficient and simple option to prevent hydrocarbons from evaporation. Thus, taking away the flammable material.

Nanovapor is a safe, gas-freeing alternative to more traditional methods. Time needed to a gas-free fuel or cargo tank is dramatically reduced and a single application can continue to suppress fuel vapors for days. The NanoVapor delivery unit uses a compressed air source to create a high-flow air stream used to inject the suppressant molecules into an enclosed tank. The molecule suppressant works quickly to suppress VOC evaporation from all liquid fuel throughout the entire tank. See the NanoVapor product video at https://ecochlor.com/ecochlor-nanovapor-nano-suppressant/

Coming soon – ballast water management efficacy testing requirements

Tanker Operator article on ballast water managementNew ballast water management systems will need to be subject to ‘biological efficacy tests during commissioning by June 2022, if not before that date. The logistics and planning for this is often overlooked. Ecochlor CEO, Steve Candito identifies a few simple ways the shipowner can significantly reduce the risk of a failed commissioning test.

To read the Tanker Operator article “Coming soon – ballast efficacy tests” to learn some helpful hints on preparing for these future testing requirements click here.