869 - 02/13 - Entry into Enclosed Spaces
The Club has become aware of increasing numbers of fatalities involving entry into enclosed spaces. This Bulletin is intended as a refresher of previous articles and information to bring Entry into Enclosed Spaces into the forefront of people’s minds in light of recent deaths.
Over the years, UK P&I (as well as numerous other organizations) have issued multiple Bulletins and articles related to Entry into Enclosed Spaces. Despite the wealth of information available, many deaths have been caused by seafarers being unaware of, or ignoring the correct procedures prior to entering an enclosed space.
Two weeks ago, a junior officer died after entering a cargo hold to collect a cargo sample. Despite being warned by multiple crew members of the dangers prior to entry, the officer entered the hold and then exited due to “bad air” inside. The officer then re-entered the hold after a mere five minutes of unforced ventilation. Once inside, he was quickly overcome by gases caused by the cargo and fell unconscious, losing his grip on the ladder and falling. The alarm was raised and he was extracted from the hold by ship’s crew using Breathing Apparatus and taken to hospital where he unfortunately passed away. No senior officers were aware of his entry to the hold, and the proper SMS procedures had not been followed.
These incidents are not particular to any ship type, crew nationality, rank or age and are caused only by seafarers being unaware of, or disregarding the proper procedures, guidelines and advice.
The following articles contain a wealth of material designed to teach and inform seafarers of the proper, safe entry procedures which, if followed, will greatly reduce the number of deaths caused as well as highlighting the risk present should the proper procedures not be followed.
Whilst some are several years old, the information contained is still pertinent and relevant to today’s industry.
Source of Information:
UK P&I - Loss Prevention
International Maritime Organisation
International Associations of Classification Societies