Car Carrier Fire in Gulf of Mexico


#1

obviously a machinery space fire and thankfully in what looks like fairly benign conditions and close to rescue resources

[B]Car Carrier Fire in Gulf of Mexico
[/B]

By MarEx 2017-01-16 17:48:34

A U.S.-flagged car carrier caught fire on Monday and is now adrift in the Gulf of Mexico with 20 crew on board.

The 199-meter (653-foot) Alliance St Louis is operating on emergency power and drifting approximately 135 miles south of Southwest Pass, Louisiana, with the tug Mariya Moran on standby at the scene.

The tug Crosby Endeavor is on its way to tow the vessel to Port Arthur, Texas.

The Coast Guard and good Samaritan vessels are continuing to respond to the incident.

A Coast Guard aircrew has conducted an over flight of the vessel and confirmed that the fire had been extinguished by the crew. No injuries or pollution have been reported.

Watchstanders at the Eighth Coast Guard District command center received a report at 3:28 a.m. from the National Command Center of an electrical fire in the engine room of the vessel.

The Alliance St. Louis was built in 2005 and is owned by Alliance Navigation. The vessel is operated by Höegh Autoliners.


#2

If it had been autonomous I’m sure the virtual chief would have had it all extinguished, repaired, and back underway before the first jet flew over the area. I wonder what the virtual captain would do if the vessel was still DIW as it drifted near all those platforms? Would he deploy his 60+ shots of chain and hold tight until the shore techs could board the vessel? Would the shore side ops coordinator don his VR glasses and second guess his every move? I’m sure at this point the shoreside QHSE guy has already jacked into the ship with his VR glasses to do his investigation into root causes. The virtual finger pointing could start before the CG jet even landed back at the base. In the end it would most likely still be human error as the cause of the fire. During the last boarding by shore side techs one of them left a food wrapper in the switchboard. This is why you don’t need real people onboard because you have to feed them and they leave their garbage laying around. Now the need for robotechs to board the vessel is even greater. Eventually all the old sailors work at window less robot factories building robots that replaced them at sea. Until they build a robot that can build more robots in which case we are all inserted into the matrix since we are not needed for this meaning less task anymore. Damn I just realized it’s all so pointless to try and fight the March of technological progress. Now I don’t even feel like showing up for crew change tomorrow.


#3

Kennebec captain:
What fixed systems would the Alliance St. Louis likely have in the holds? Also, what percentage of the vehicle gas tanks are filled with fuel? Professional curiosity.


#4

[QUOTE=freighterman;194423]Kennebec captain:
What fixed systems would the Alliance St. Louis likely have in the holds? Also, what percentage of the vehicle gas tanks are filled with fuel? Professional curiosity.[/QUOTE]

Typically bulk CO2 fixed system serving holds and engine room.

Sistership had a fire due to shifting cargo and a fuel issue, if you follow the details to the NTSB docket you may find more info to satisfy your curiosity:

https://www.ntsb.gov/investigations/AccidentReports/Reports/MAB1305.pdf


#5

Mariya Moran is an ATB so it can’t (easily) tow the ship. I guess another tug will be on its way out.


#6

Fraqrat “If it had been autonomous I’m sure the virtual chief would have had it all extinguished, repaired, and back underway before the first jet flew over the area. I wonder what the virtual captain would do if the vessel was still DIW as it drifted near all those platforms? Would he deploy his 60+ shots of chain and hold tight until the shore techs could board the vessel? Would the shore side ops coordinator don his VR glasses and second guess his every move? I’m sure at this point the shoreside QHSE guy has already jacked into the ship with his VR glasses to do his investigation into root causes. The virtual finger pointing could start before the CG jet even landed back at the base. In the end it would most likely still be human error as the cause of the fire. During the last boarding by shore side techs one of them left a food wrapper in the switchboard. This is why you don’t need real people onboard because you have to feed them and they leave their garbage laying around. Now the need for robotechs to board the vessel is even greater. Eventually all the old sailors work at window less robot factories building robots that replaced them at sea. Until they build a robot that can build more robots in which case we are all inserted into the matrix since we are not needed for this meaning less task anymore. Damn I just realized it’s all so pointless to try and fight the March of technological progress. Now I don’t even feel like showing up for crew change tomorrow”

LOL!


#7

Fraqrat “If it had been autonomous I’m sure the virtual chief would have had it all extinguished, repaired, and back underway before the first jet flew over the area. I wonder what the virtual captain would do if the vessel was still DIW as it drifted near all those platforms? Would he deploy his 60+ shots of chain and hold tight until the shore techs could board the vessel? Would the shore side ops coordinator don his VR glasses and second guess his every move? I’m sure at this point the shoreside QHSE guy has already jacked into the ship with his VR glasses to do his investigation into root causes. The virtual finger pointing could start before the CG jet even landed back at the base. In the end it would most likely still be human error as the cause of the fire. During the last boarding by shore side techs one of them left a food wrapper in the switchboard. This is why you don’t need real people onboard because you have to feed them and they leave their garbage laying around. Now the need for robotechs to board the vessel is even greater. Eventually all the old sailors work at window less robot factories building robots that replaced them at sea. Until they build a robot that can build more robots in which case we are all inserted into the matrix since we are not needed for this meaning less task anymore. Damn I just realized it’s all so pointless to try and fight the March of technological progress. Now I don’t even feel like showing up for crew change tomorrow.”

LOL!


#8

[QUOTE=freighterman;194423]Kennebec captain:
What fixed systems would the Alliance St. Louis likely have in the holds? Also, what percentage of the vehicle gas tanks are filled with fuel? Professional curiosity.[/QUOTE]

There is a good chance that there were a low pressure CO2 system installed: http://www.danfoss-semco.com/technologies/lpco2/

PS> There MAY also be water mist system, but only on newer vessels.

Most PCTC carries factory new cars, (I believe) with the fuel tanks empty.

I believe the Alliance vessels usually carries new or used military vehicles?

Not sure of their fuel status, but I believe we have several members with experience from such vessels.


#9

Haven’t sailed on a RORO but they must have some amount of fuel. Don’t they usually drive them all on and off for cargo ops, then they eventually get loaded on car trailers?


#10

[QUOTE=ombugge;194433]There is a good chance that there were a low pressure CO2 system installed … There MAY also be water mist system, but only on newer vessels.[/QUOTE]

Have sailed on ROPAX with deluge system on the car deck and RORO with low pressure CO2. It is a matter of protected volume and the ability to seal the protected compartments that determine which is best. The ROPAX used high pressure CO2 for machinery space protection.


#11

I have sailed a couple car carriers and you are right drive on and drive off. They had about a gallon of gas if I remember


#12

[QUOTE=brjones;194439]I have sailed a couple car carriers and you are right drive on and drive off. They had about a gallon of gas if I remember[/QUOTE]

That’s right, just the minimum needed.

The E/R and cargo holds are protected by a fixed low-pressure CO two system as has been said. Over 50 tons of CO2 in a single tank kept liquefied by a pair of refer compressors .

All the cargo holds and E/R is protected. The largest protected cargo space is several times bigger volume than the E/R so the engine spaces could be flooded with CO2 multiple times if required.

Also if all the CO2 is expended the fire main system can be quickly lined up to spray sea water via the CO2 piping into any space protected by CO2 system.


#13

[QUOTE=Kennebec Captain;194440]That’s right, just the minimum needed.

The E/R and cargo holds are protected by a fixed low-pressure CO two system as has been said. Over 50 tons of CO2 in a single tank kept liquefied by a pair of refer compressors .[/quote]

I remember discussing this with the Owner’s Superint. when planning layup of PCTCs some years ago.
It was then mentioned that the older type had deluge system and the very newest had Water Mist system for the cargo decks: http://www.danfoss-semco.com/fire-fighting-system-for-the-worlds-largest-pure-car-and-truck-carrier-pctc/

The majority of such vessel belonging to that Owner had LP CO2 though.
Due to the LP CO2 system these vessels required power supply 24/7 to maintain the CO2 liquid. Removing the CO2 was not a viable option.

PS> Loading cars in Nagoya, Japan: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y02nKaWebWU


#14

[QUOTE=ombugge;194445]I remember discussing this with the Owner’s Superint. when planning layup of PCTCs some years ago.
It was then mentioned that the older type had deluge system and the very newest had Water Mist system for the cargo decks: http://www.danfoss-semco.com/fire-fighting-system-for-the-worlds-largest-pure-car-and-truck-carrier-pctc/

[/QUOTE]

I have a difficult time believing that they are using the water mist for cargo decks. Surely the article is referring to required engine room water mist application vice cargo? SEM SAFE product literature doesn’t even note cargo hold application. And since they run on an initial fresh water charge, the size of a tank for cargo decks would be crazy. I have always understood favoring of CO2 LP over sprinkler/deluge to be necessary volume, efficient packaging, maintenance and avoidance of any possible water (&salt) intrusion for preserving cargo hold conditions to prevent affecting new cars in transit. Which is why they have such closed spaces, and ROPAX don’t and are usually sprinkler protected (used cars, vice new cargo).


#15

[QUOTE=Jamesbrown;194447]I have a difficult time believing that they are using the water mist for cargo decks. Surely the article is referring to required engine room water mist application vice cargo? SEM SAFE product literature doesn’t even note cargo hold application. And since they run on an initial fresh water charge, the size of a tank for cargo decks would be crazy. I have always understood favoring of CO2 LP over sprinkler/deluge to be necessary volume, efficient packaging, maintenance and avoidance of any possible water (&salt) intrusion for preserving cargo hold conditions to prevent affecting new cars in transit. Which is why they have such closed spaces, and ROPAX don’t and are usually sprinkler protected (used cars, vice new cargo).[/QUOTE]

Water Mist System for RoRos/PCTCs does exist: http://www.marioff.com/fire-protection/fire-protection-for-marine-offshore/fire-protection-for-ships/ro-ro-vessel-fire


#16

[QUOTE=ombugge;194449]Water Mist System for RoRos/PCTCs does exist: http://www.marioff.com/fire-protection/fire-protection-for-marine-offshore/fire-protection-for-ships/ro-ro-vessel-fire[/QUOTE]

I didn’t say they didn’t, I was commenting on the article you reference and the SEM SAFE. I think again in general Pctcs for new vehicles to dealers will favor co2, especially where movable decks get involved. But I certainly acknowledge that such installations exist and may be protecting vehicle spaces.


#17

just an update on the situation

[B]After Fire, American Car Carrier Under Tow in Gulf of Mexico[/B]

January 19, 2017 by Mike Schuler

The American car carrier Alliance St Louis is now under tow in the Gulf of Mexico after an engine room fire left the vessel adrift for more than two days off the coast of Louisiana.

The U.S. Coast Guard reports that the tug Crosby Endeavor arrived on scene to the car carrier at 10:45 a.m. Tuesday carrying a fire team to clear the vessel’s engine room for safety. The tug put the Alliance St Louis in tow at approximately 2:30 p.m., Wednesday, to tow the vessel to Sabine Bank Pilot Station near Port Author, Texas.

The Coast Guard along with good samaritan vessels responded to the report early Monday morning of a vessel on fire approximately 135 miles southwest of Southwest Pass, Louisiana. By Monday afternoon the fire on board had been fully extinguished, but the vessel was left on emergency power and drifting.

The Coast Guard Cutter Brant crew arrived on scene at approximately 6:00 a.m. Tuesday to relieve the good samaritan tug, Mariya Moran, which stayed on scene as the Coast Guard maintained communication with car carrier.

The Alliane St Louis has 20 crewmembers aboard. No injuries or pollution has been reported.

The 6,500 ceu M/V Alliance St. Louis, built in 2005, is owned by a joint venture involving Hoegh Autoliners, Alliance Navigation, and Maersk Line, Limited, and trades internationally.

The cause of the incident is under investigation.


#18

[QUOTE=Jamesbrown;194424]Typically bulk CO2 fixed system serving holds and engine room.

Sistership had a fire due to shifting cargo and a fuel issue, if you follow the details to the NTSB docket you may find more info to satisfy your curiosity:

https://www.ntsb.gov/investigations/AccidentReports/Reports/MAB1305.pdf[/QUOTE]

A vehicle carrier would probably have a foam system in the cargo areas. Then again, I am more familiar with military Ro/Ros


#19

A post was split to a new topic: NTSB Marine Accident Brief Fire aboard Vehicle Carrier Alliance St. Louis