Digitalization Comes To the Rescue As Shipping Evolves To Tackle Fires!


  • Industry reaction on containership fire measures are good but requires a long-time to learn
  • It’s not just dangerous goods but all sorts of cargo incidents that cause fire
  • The cargo hold area remains a potential area of concern
  • Digitalization and IT solutions holds the key to better solutions.

In a major development,  the TT Club’s risk management director Peregrine Storrs-Fox has discussed issues pertaining to the industry’s evolution on dealing with fires onboard containerships and what the industry does to address the issue, reports Safety4Sea.

Industry Actions So far

Specifically, Peregrine Storrs-Fox during discussions with HCB TV highlighted that the industry has taken many steps to change the existent situation concerning fires on board container ships. For example, the dangerous goods regulations have a two-year cycle and every year there are new commodities added to the listings. This is one level of change taking place.

The changes on safety measures rise from incidents.

We do have a learning process that goes back quite a long time.

Collaboration for Better Understanding

More recently, a major development was that the shipping lines began collaborating with regards to cargo incidents, as back in 2011 the Cargo Incident Notification system (CINS) network was launched, so five major lines partnered to work on a more collaborative basis.

The Concern Areas

Now, it’s not just dangerous goods leading to fires, it’s all types of incidents of cargo or container leading to some form of disruption onboard or on land.

Moreover, Mr Peregrine Storrs-Fox adds that charcoal or calcium hypochlorite are amongst the products that can erupt a fire, or fishmeal and semi-bulk commodities that have now been containerized may be part of the indicator.

Tank containers are generally homogeneous and would be more able to be controlled as long as they were on their own. But, once you get in a hold you’ve got hundreds of other containers around them, either impacted by some venting or leakage or themselves may give an impact to that container.

Digitalization To The Rescue?

There is a possibility that digitalization or IT can help the shipping industry to focus on this kind of issues. Therefore, the opportunity in a peer-to-peer type environment in the blockchain world then that ecosystem by definition should start to provide validation that is necessary between the different stakeholders and ensure that any collection of data can be passed without any interruption or distortion.

In theory digitalization does help a lot…I would hope that shippers and the chemical industry will be the ones to control the products transmitted and hopefully are becoming better prepared.

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Source: Safety4Sea


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