The Club has been notified of an amendment to terminal regulations issued by Phillips Petroleum Company and applying to its terminal on the River Tees, U.K.
The notice advising of the amendment states:
As from Monday 11th October 1999 any vessel whose previous cargo was butadiene will not be accepted at the Phillips terminal unless the vessel’s storage tanks and associated pipework have been purged with nitrogen to ensure a butadiene level of 1.0ppm or less. A certificate of analysis issued by an independent inspector must be presented to the terminal prior to any such vessel berthing. It will not be acceptable to purge the tanks and pipework with the vessels own inert gas because of the possible formation of explosive peroxides.
This action is to control personnel exposure to butadiene as the Material Safety Data Sheet identifies it as a carcinogen.
The requirement to purge butadiene vapours is unnecessary from the point of view of cargo quality; it has been introduced on health and safety grounds. No nitrogen purging facility exists at the Phillips terminal and ships must therefore arrive already purged. Nitrogen purging can be carried out locally at either ICI or Tees Storage facilities. The requirement for nitrogen purging, rather than purging by the ship’s IG system, will be expensive and may mean that ships whose last cargo was Butadiene will be shut-out from the terminal due to the cost of complying with the new regulation.
Consultants are discussing the technical issues of purging with nitrogen, rather than by the ship’s IG system, with Phillips Petroleum. They consider the requirement incurs an unnecessary expense and that a ship’s IG system will safely achieve the required outcome.
We shall keep you informed of any further developments.
Source of information:
Tel +44 171 242 8444
Fax +44 171 242 8444