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Disposal for Spilled Oil and Prevention for Secondary Disaster

Half of all major oil pollution claims arise from incidents on ships not carrying oil cargoes. Although major spills receive international attention, they contribute to less than 5-10% of oil pollution reported. When oil spills into the aquatic environment, it can harmorganisms that live on or around the water surface or under the water. Spilled oil can also damage parts of the food chain, including human food resources.

Although many species are harmed or killed soon after contact with the oil, other effects are not noticed immediately and can be longer lasting:
  1. wildlife can be slowly poisoned by long term exposure to toxins
  2. predators can be exposed to oil by eating contaminated prey
  3. scientists have observed developmental effects in bird embryosthat were exposed to oil
50% of all major pollution claims involve ships which are not carrying oil cargoes. Routine operational activities are of greater concern:
  1. bilge water disposal
  2. tank washing
  3. ballasting
  4. fuel transfer
  5. loading / unloading cargo on tankers.

MARPOL 73/78 Annex I:
As part of the environmental policy, regulations in MARPOL Annex I have to be considered during ballast operations. This is to ensure that ballast water is not contaminated by oil products as a result of failures e.g. failure of bulkheads/joints between tanks or pipework systems that run through ballast tanks.

Ballast overboard discharge valves are to be kept closed and warning notices posted at the valves, engine and cargo control rooms before the vessel enters port or designated Special Areas.

Any discharge into the sea of oil or oily mixtures from the cargo area of an oil tanker shall be prohibited, except when all the following conditions are satisfied:
  1. the tanker is not in a Special Area
  2. the tanker is more than 50 nautical miles from the nearest land
  3. the tanker is proceeding en route
  4. the rate of discharge does not exceed 30 litres per nautical mile
  5. the total quantity of oil discharged does not exceed 1/30,000 of the total quantity of the cargo
  6. the tanker has an Oil Discharge Monitoring Equipment(ODME) in operation.
The discharged monitoring and control system should be used to discharge residue (Regulation 15).

Tanker Standard Equipment For Disposal Of Spilled Oil & Secondary Disaster Prevention

Slop Dump (Surface) Valve Arrangement (Emergency drains)

The slop dump valve arrangement is generally provided at the aftermost portion of the tank deck area. It connects the “On-Deck” accumulation to the slop tank(s) on either side of the ship (where fitted).

Opening of the drain valves in the case of an on deck oil spill must be authorized by the Chief Officer, or in his absence the duty deck officer. Close attention must be taken of positive pressure in the slop tank, correct draining procedures must be followed.

A warning sign, displayed well above such fish plate level, with the text “Not to be opened without authorization from the Chief Officer or the duty deck officer” should be posted by the drain valves.

Every Quarter, the function testing of the Slop Tank Dump (Surface) Valves is to be exercised using “Quarterly Testing Record for Miscellaneous Equipment”

The crew are to be properly instructed during drills, on the correct draining procedures to be followed, at each case of oil spill. Incorrect procedures could lead to serious aggravation of the case.

Equipment and Materials for on deck Oil Spill Clean up

Company designates Equipment and Materials for on deck Oil Spill Clean up in “Shipboard Oil Pollution Emergency Plan (SOPEP)”.

Vessel’s equipment for clean up of an ‘on deck’ oil spill shall be distributed correctly to prepare for Emergency Measures. Steel Drums should not be directly placed or moved on deck without suitable non-conductive insulation beneath.

The Portable Pneumatic Diaphragm Pump shall be ready to use at aft Main deck. And Stripper pump (during discharge operations only) should to be kept in state of readiness for the intended duration of operations.

Refer to on board SOPEP manual (or CFR 33 part 155.205 or 155.210 as applicable if in US navigable waters).

Inert Gas System

Main purpose of Inert Gas System is:
Maintain Pressure in Cargo Oil Tanks in proper range
Maintain Atmosphere in Cargo Oil Tanks as Inflammable Condition

In principle all operations should be suspended, if an Oil Pollution Incident occurs during Oil Transfer Operation, however Inert Gas System may be operated continuously to prevent secondary disaster, Fire Accident.

How to Report an Emergency

The Master shall ensure that company’s internal and local emergency contact details are posted in public areas and in accordance with the “Shipboard Oil Pollution Emergency Plan”, the “Emergency Procedures for Oil pollution Accidents” and “Vessel Response Plan (VRP)” for the vessels to serve in U.S. water.

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