The Cruise Ship National Center of Expertise in Ft. Lauderdale recently released its semi-annual newsletter and Maritime Commons will be releasing individually several of the articles that we think will be of particular interest to our readers. For more information about the CSNCOE, or to sign up to receive the newsletter in your inbox, visit their website.
Submitted by Lt. Cmdr. Eric Jesionowski, National Cruise Ship Center of Expertise
The Coast Guard conducted 292 cruise ship examinations in 2017 and only 0.34 percent received a detention. As defined by the International Maritime Organization (IMO), a detention is an intervention action taken by the port State when the condition of the ship or its crew does not correspond substantially with the applicable conventions to ensure that the ship will not sail until it can proceed to sea without presenting a danger to the ship or persons on board. This low percentage of detentions shows that there is a strong safety culture in the cruise line industry.
To further improve safety awareness, the Cruise Ship National Center of Expertise is providing the industry with a list of common causes of Port State Control detentions on cruise ships:
• Fire doors had compromised fire protection integrity to include holes, wastage, patches and improper modifications or repairs. 74 SOLAS (14), II-2/18.104.22.168.5
• Windows facing lifesaving embarkation areas found to be cracked or shattered. 74 SOLAS (14), II-2/22.214.171.124.7
• Lifeboats were found to have fuel in the bilges from an unknown source. 74 SOLAS (14), III/20.2
• Manual pumps in the lifeboats were found to be inoperable due to deterioration of bilge pump hoses. 74 SOLAS (14), III/20.2
• Lifejackets were found rotted and inoperable. 74 SOLAS (14), III/20.2
Detentions may have been the result of a combination of deficiencies, and not necessarily resulted from any one individual deficiency.
Top Deficient Areas
Here are the top deficiencies found onboard cruise ship examinations. Unlike the items listed above, these did not necessarily result in a detention but were most commonly found.
Owners, operators, and other involved parties can take proactive steps to identify and correct non-compliant conditions of safety and environmental stewardship before Port State Control action is necessary.
Structural Fire Protection
• Fire Screen Doors. Fire screen doors were found to have damage to the sequencing bars, damage to the doors themselves or not closing properly (Either too fast, too slow or were not latching completely). 74 SOLAS (14), II-2/126.96.36.199.5
• Fire Integrity of Bulkheads and Decks. Bulkheads and decks were found with improper penetrations, wastage and/or missing the required insulation for the boundary. 74 SOLAS (14), II-2/188.8.131.52
• Improper Utilization of Categorized Spaces. There were several deficiencies issued regarding improper use of spaces. Space is at a premium on cruise ships. Because of this, sometimes crewmembers store combustible materials in spaces that do not have the adequate fire protection and suppression systems in the event of a fire. 74 SOLAS (14), II-2/184.108.40.206.2
Means of Escape
• Impeding Means of Escape. Corridors, doors and hatches in areas designated as escape routes were found to be either partially or completely blocked. Doors in some instances were locked, without the ability to defeat the lock, preventing passage in the direction of escape. 74 SOLAS (14), II-2/13.3.2
• Escape Signage. Spaces were found with exit signage and/or low location lighting, missing, blocked, improperly labeled or inoperable. 74 SOLAS (14), II-2/220.127.116.11
• Lifeboat & Rescue boats were found damaged and/or inoperable. 74 SOLAS (14) CH. III/20
• Launching appliances were found damaged or with inoperable falls, davits and/or releasing mechanisms. 74 SOLAS (14) CH. III/20
Fire Detection and Suppression Systems
• Systems were found damaged or inoperable, with sprinkler heads/water mist nozzles painted over, or completely missing. Other issues included failed couplings. 74 SOLAS (14) CH. II-2/14.1.1
• Ship’s crew were found to be unfamiliar with assigned duties and/or emergency equipment. 74 SOLAS (14) CH.III/19
These items are not all-inclusive and do not cover the entire scope of deficiencies found during Foreign Passenger Vessel examinations. Vessel representatives are reminded that if any system on board the vessel is not in good working condition, the crew should take the necessary actions to remedy the situation in accordance with their Safety Management System. A record of any actions taken should be maintained as evidence that the SMS is being used effectively in conjunction with all routine maintenance.
Cites provided are for reference only and do not indicate that they are “All Ships” cites. When writing deficiencies use the individual ships “Keel Laid” date for applicability.
Visit CSNCOE’s website to read the entire “Summer 19” newsletter.
Please “Tell Us How We Are Doing.” The CSNCOE is always looking for feedback to improve and better serve the Coast Guard and cruise shipping industry.
The CSNCOE is one of six nationwide national centers of expertise focusing on providing industry specific consultation and services to the Coast Guard and maritime industry. The CSNCOE, located in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, is the repository of Coast Guard expertise and best practices on the FPVE program and is focused on raising the competency, capabilities, and consistency Coast Guard wide in the field of cruise ship safety, environmental, and security requirements and examinations. As the industry liaison, the CSNCOE provides training and mission support to the Coast Guard and industry alike by memorializing a blend of these mentioned activities thus ensuring the lines of communication and interaction continue.
This blog is not a replacement or substitute for the formal posting of regulations and updates or existing processes for receiving formal feedback of the same. Links provided on this blog will direct the reader to official source documents, such as the Federal Register, Homeport and the Code of Federal Regulations. These documents remain the official source for regulatory information published by the Coast Guard.