August 19, 2004

Port State Control officers are targeting fire dampers

Lloyd's Register has issued a statutory alert to shipowners warning that Port State Control officials are paying particular attention to fire dampers.

"Analysis of information received on port state control (PSC) deficiencies found by PSC officers has highlighted certain areas which are of particular concern," notes Lloyd's Register.

"One major aspect which continues to be targeted by PSC is fire dampers," says the LR Classification News alert. "In particular, PSC officers are highlighting wastage and seizure."

This is a potential problem for all vessels, and it has been noted that this type of deficiency is becoming more prevalent, with more vessels being subject to PSC detention as a result.

At present, the main location of detention on these grounds is Australia. Other PSC areas do detain vessels on these grounds, but not to the same extent.

The problem is not limited to Lloyd’s Register-classed vessels. Other classification societiesrs have also experienced detentions of their classed vessels on the basis of unsatisfactory fire dampers.

Fire dampers are high profile items that are easily accessed by PSC officers during inspections and their inspection helps officers to establish quickly whether a vessel has been subject to a well controlled onboard maintenance regime.

"It follows that a continuous onboard overhaul and maintenance regime of this equipment will help reduce the likelihood of deficiencies and detentions," says Lloyd's Register.

Copies of Lloyd’s Register’s ‘Maintenance Guide Checklist’, which provides guidance for owners and operators, are available from local offices. This guide is intended to supplement the shipowner's own operation and maintenance procedures.

It is hoped that the use of the checklist will assist in reducing the risk of PSC detentions.

Both current and historic data concerning Lloyd’s Register-classed ship deficiencies resulting from PSC are available on the Lloyd’s Register website at (click on ‘Marine Services’ and then on ‘Port state control’).


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