824 - 05/12 - Hydrochloric acid cargo leaks - USA
The Houston/Galveston branch of the US Coast Guard has issued an alert concerning leaking containers loaded with hydrochloric acid. The alert reports that the primary cause of the leaks were improper loading and securing within the containers.
The Coast Guard report also highlights shipping placards to be too small and emergency contact information lacking. In all instances leading to the publication of this report the shippers of these containers were located in south Asia.
There have been many recent incidents involving leaking containers of hydrochloric acid on the US highways and railways. One such incident lead to the evacuation of a town in Colorado while crews transferred the dangerous chemicals from one leaking container to a safer unit. Fumes from hydrochloric acid are a cause of irritation to skin, eyes and lungs.
The Club would like to advise Members of the precautions which should be taken when shipping this commodity such as inspecting containers prior to loading; ensure blocking and bracing is adequate; ensure shipping paperwork and emergency contact information is correct and complete and placards of proper size are in place.
Tank containers are also problematic as older tanks improperly maintained are prone to leaks. Failed tank linings and valves are frequently the cause of leaking tanks. The tanks exterior condition should be inspected prior to being released for road or rail transport.
Full text of the USCG Marine Safety Information Bulletin can be found at the following web address; www.brymar-consulting.com/wp-content/uploads/Misc/MSIB_02-12.pdf
Source of Information:
UK P&I Club
San Francisco, USA
Legal, navigational and environmental resources, news and updates on the development of polar shipping. Read more
US VRP Compliance
With effect from 30th January 2014 non-tank as well as tankships calling at US ports will be required to submit VRPs. For Club and other resources to assist in compliance click here
International Environmental compliance
Environmental Compliance resource page collates material in respect of International environmental compliance issues affecting our Members. Information from the Club, Loss Prevention and external resources has been collated in one place for ease of reference.
The Maritime Labour Convention enters into force in August 2013 - resources, news & advice on implementation can be found in this dedicated section. READ MORE
Essential precautions and preparation against piracy, as well as additional information and resources, loss prevention advisories and useful external web links