Warning on Dangers of Cargo Fumigation at Sea

Posted by George Backwell
Thursday, May 01, 2014
Cargo Fumigation: Image courtesy of UK P&I Club

The UK P&I Club says it has received reports of a number of accidents and injuries to crew members resulting from the inadvertent release of highly toxic phosphine gas or the effects of fires and explosions, both caused by the unsafe disposal of residues of aluminium phosphide following the fumigation of cargoes in transit. The Club has consequently issued a loss prevention circular, summarised as follows:

  • International guidance and recommendations on fumigation on board ships is contained in MSC Circulars 12641 and 13962 and the IMSBC Code3.  These stress that:
  • Fumigation in transit should only be carried out at the discretion of the Master
  • The Master should be aware of the regulations of the Flag State of Administration having regard to fumigation in transit,
  • When phosphine generating formulations (of the type with which this bulletin is concerned) are used, any collected residues may ignite.
  • The Ship Manager’s ISM Code should include a section dealing with fumigation.
     

UK P&I Club explains that accidents have occurred during and after discharge of the cargo, sometimes caused by a failure to follow written advice provided by fumigation contractors at the load port.

Fumigant formulations
Phosphine is a well established insecticide suitable for the fumigation of bulk cargoes such as grain. Phosphine is also poisonous to humans at relatively low concentrations and can form flammable gas:air mixtures.  Phosphine can be conveniently generated on and in cargo in the holds by the reaction of atmospheric moisture with aluminium or magnesium phosphide formulations placed in the holds by specialist fumigation contractors.

In conclusion
Phosphide fumigants can be hazardous, but by carefully following the guidance and warnings in MSC Circulars 1264 and 1396, and the IMSBC Code and the manufacturer’s instructions for the disposal of spent or partially spent material, accidents and injury can be avoided.
 
Source: The UK P&I Club

 

 

Maritime Reporter June 2015 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

People & Company News

SUNY Maritime College Names ABS Chairs

The State University of New York (SUNY) Maritime College has selected Dr. Richard Burke and Dr. Christopher Clott as its inaugural ABS chairs following a comprehensive

Austal Starts Next US Littoral Combat Ship

Austal and the U.S. Navy held a keel-laying ceremony today for the future USS Manchester (LCS 14), marking the first significant milestone in its construction.

Conference to Delve into Hybrid Power & Propulsion

The first international Hybrid Marine Power & Propulsion Conference will be held at the RNLI Lifeboat College, Poole UK from October 6-8, 2015.   Shock Mitigation

Bulk Carrier Trends

LCA Sees Progress on Great Lakes Issues

Prospects for ending the dredging crisis and resolving other pressing issues on the Great Lakes are the best in 12 years according to Lake Carriers’ Association (LCA),

Scorpio Bulkers Charters Out Newbuild Bulker

Dry bulk marine transport provider Scorpio Bulkers Inc. announced today that it has agreed to time charter-out the SBI Montesino, a Capesize vessel that is currently

Dalian Shipbuilding Wins Cosco Order for 7 Ships

Dalian Shipbuilding Industry Corporation (DSIC) has announced an order win for two 319,000 dwt VLCCs and five 72,000 dwt product tankers from Cosco Dalian, the

Environmental

LCA Sees Progress on Great Lakes Issues

Prospects for ending the dredging crisis and resolving other pressing issues on the Great Lakes are the best in 12 years according to Lake Carriers’ Association (LCA),

Conference to Delve into Hybrid Power & Propulsion

The first international Hybrid Marine Power & Propulsion Conference will be held at the RNLI Lifeboat College, Poole UK from October 6-8, 2015.   Shock Mitigation

Polarcus Divests from Select Projects in Europe, Africa

Polarcus Limited announced it has signed a Letter of Intent (LOI) with TGS-NOPEC Geophysical Company ASA (TGS) for the sale of its multi-client projects in Northwest

Maritime Safety

Maritime, Migration Heads Pledge Joint Action

The heads of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) and the International Organization for Migration (IOM) on Monday, June 29 reaffirmed their commitment

Conference to Delve into Hybrid Power & Propulsion

The first international Hybrid Marine Power & Propulsion Conference will be held at the RNLI Lifeboat College, Poole UK from October 6-8, 2015.   Shock Mitigation

Missing Divers Found in Gulf of Mexico

U.S. Coast Guard crews locate two missing divers in Gulf of Mexico   Two overdue divers offshore from San Jose Island, Texas, were rescued by a U.S. Coast Guard

 
 
Maritime Careers / Shipboard Positions Maritime Contracts Maritime Standards Navigation Pipelines Pod Propulsion Port Authority Ship Repair Ship Simulators Shipbuilding / Vessel Construction
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 0.2141 sec (5 req/sec)