A Marine Evacuation System (MES), consisting of a slide or chute where passengers can evacuate straight into waiting life rafts, can often be found on modern high speed crafts and passenger ships, where weight, space and evacuation times must be kept to a minimum. For the first time, a similar system has now also been developed for Special Purpose Ships (SPS).
A close relationship between Norwegian-based Brude Safety AS and Ulstein Design has lead to this new type of space saving MES, designed to fit Special Purpose Ships, such as Offshore Support Vessels (OSVs). The new Brude MES Chute SPS is designed for safe and efficient evacuation from a ship in international waters with an evacuation height from 3 to 20 metres. The system consists of the evacuation chute and mooring system, life rafts for 65 and 150 persons as well as optional additional life rafts for 10, 30, 50 and 150 persons.
The new space saving Brude MES Chute is said to improve safe evacuation compared to davit solutions and to be easy and cost effective to install. All the system’s operations are manual and they can all be carried out by 2 persons, meaning there is no need for electrical or hydraulic supply, while service costs can be kept to a minimum.
The new design has lead to a major order to supply all six new vessels for Polarcus currently being built at Drydocks World Dubai, with the first in the series, the Polarcus Nadia, having been delivered recently. The second vessel, the Polarcus Naila, is to be delivered early 2010. Of the series of six vessels, four of them will have one deployment frame and chute combined with two 65 persons life rafts and one 10 persons life raft on each side. Two of the vessels will only have one deployment frame and chute combined with two 65 persons only on each side. Since there are only 65 crew members on board, there is no need for additional life rafts. The main reason for the order is said to be the space saving and Brude Safety’s experience with supplying similar larger systems to the passenger shipping industry.
All components are made of marine aluminium. The system container is bolted to the deck of the vessel and designed to hold the launching ramp and chute in a deployed position. The container door is opened by means of two gas cylinders. When the container door is in the open position, the launching ramp and chute are ejected and lowered into the deployed position in a controlled manner.
The evacuation chute is made up of separate cells with sloping slides, enabling safe descent and transfer from the vessel to the evacuation rafts. It is possible to climb out of the chute from any of the cells.
The system raft in the Brude Mes SPS, has so called upside-down functionality. This means that the raft will stay in the correct position regardless of which side is facing up after deployment. Additional rafts can be moored to the system raft to achieve the desired evacuation capacity.