Lessons Learned: Master Halts Unsafe Fuel Transfer

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A recent Safety Flash by the International Marine Contractors Association (IMCA) focuses on an incident, in which the officer on watch on the supply vessel PSV observed welding work being undertaken on the deck of the rig, during fuel transfer operations alongside a semi-submersible rig.

What happened

During fuel transfer operations alongside a semi-submersible rig, the officer on watch on the supply vessel PSV observed welding work being undertaken on the deck of the rig. The vessel bridge immediately communicated this information to the rig control room using VHF, challenging why bunkering and hot work activities were being carried out simultaneously. Stop Work authority was applied; the vessel stopped fuel transfer.

What went right

  • The vessel bridge team immediately intervened and challenged the unsafe condition of hot work (potential fire risk) taking place near fuel transfer;
  • The unsafe condition was reported immediately to the client and company management. The client’s rig management team positively recognized the vessel’s intervention and initiated an investigation of the failure of communication to prevent re-occurrences.

What went wrong

  • That hot work was taking place, was not communicated to the vessel;
  • Confirmation by the rig that SIMOPs were occurring, was a mandatory part of the Safety Zone checklist communication process.

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Source: IMCA

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