It’s the little things that catch you out. On the Shell-managed, Australia-flagged liquefied natural gas, LNG, tanker Northwest Stormpetrel the cargo engineer followed the rules as he checked the LNG forcing vaporiser’s steam trap to resolve drainage issues but thanks to a missing safety clip still got a painful face-full of steam that required him to be evacuated from the ship for treatment says a report from Australia’s Transport Safety Bureau, ATSB.
Brazil’s Maritime Authority, Marinho Do Brazil, has recommended that the International Maritime Organisation, IMO, should standardise procedures for the “verification, tests and inspections of the artefacts of steam should be standardized by the IMO and not just defined by each classification society in conformity with their own criteria”. The recommendation is made in the authority’s report into the death of a seafarer aboard the bulker Shanghai Carrier on 9 November 2009.
It is believed that an engineering officer on watch opened a drain valve on a steam pipeline too quickly. A water hammer developed which led to the bursting of a drainage tank near the drain valve. The officer suffered burns, resulting from the
direct impact of live and condensed steam accumulated in the drainage tank and, despite being rescued, died later from injuries suffered.