Cable Penetrations Almost Did in the EMMA MAERSK

This is a crazy report: http://gcaptain.com/emma-maersk-accident-investigation-cable-penetrations/

I must say, I’m pretty damn impressed with the seamanship displayed by the ship’s crew to handle this emergency.

You can bet there’s going to be a lot of inspections being made on a lot of new and recent build rigs and ships. Those blu block things are everywhere.

Interesting that they point out stress from multiple repeating alarms. That drives me crazy and does more harm than good i think when stuffs going bad. Need to read the report entirely, but a good topic in itself.

ABS is in fact paying attention to penetrations. I recently had a topside inspection and an inspector made mention of cable penetrations. Their concern was that wire penetration blocks were mixed and matched, stating that all of the blocks between two stay plates must be of the same size. Now it all makes sense why someone would look for something so benign.

[QUOTE=“z-drive;126670”]Interesting that they point out stress from multiple repeating alarms. That drives me crazy and does more harm than good i think when stuffs going bad. Need to read the report entirely, but a good topic in itself.[/QUOTE]

Those alarms are a pet peeve of mine. IMO should require all alarms to be a soft soothing female voice which verbally describes the problem that caused the alarm.

[QUOTE=z-drive;126670]Interesting that they point out stress from multiple repeating alarms. That drives me crazy and does more harm than good i think when stuffs going bad. Need to read the report entirely, but a good topic in itself.[/QUOTE]

This was a topic that was also brought up in the accident report for the Queen Mary 2 when one of the harmonic filters exploded. From page 54 of the QM2 accident report:

2.6 ALARM MANAGEMENT
During the watch before the accident, the duty engineer accepted approximately
one alarm every minute. It is highly likely that the number of alarms during the busy
hours of the day would have been even higher. The purpose of an alarm is to alert
the watchkeeper to an anomaly so that appropriate corrective actions may be taken.
However, if the alarms appear as frequently as one every minute, it would be almost
impossible for the watchkeeper to deal with them effectively. Half an hour before the
accident, the duty engineer had accepted two fire alarms without taking any further
action and without actually knowing at the time that these were false alarms.

Although during this accident there were no alarms on the IAS to warn the
watchkeeper of the impending explosion and blackout, a series of ‘half drive
lamp alarms’ began to appear on the P1200 system starting 36 minutes before
the accident. The frequency of alarms on the IAS at around one every minute, in
addition to alarms from the P1200 system is most likely to have overwhelmed the
watchkeeper, and it is not surprising that the propulsion motor alarms were not acted
upon. Therefore, it is imperative that ship managers, in consultation with the class
society concerned, carefully review machinery alarms to make sure that crew are
warned about major equipment failures and that alarms are prioritised to focus on
the areas most critical to maintaining the safety of the ship.

Full report is here: http://www.maib.gov.uk/cms_resources.cfm?file=/QM2Report.pdf

One of the ships I was on we would put the Grainger catalog on the silence button. We would still get alarms but the buzzer would not sound. There weren’t any computers involved though. Now with all of the automation everything is on a computer, so you get the alarm and it flashes on the screen along with a buzzer. It’s a two step process to get the buzzer silenced and make the alarm list stop flashing so that you can actually see what the heck is going on. If the alarm clears, you have to go to another list to see what it was. It’s really handy having another person (cadet) in the control room who just hits the silence button.

On a tug with limited crew excessive alarms are a huge hazard IMHO. Yes I think essential engine alarms, bilge alarms etc are important, however systems need to be more intelligent that will know to shut the hell up and revert to a more “relaxed” tone when it’s not a critical situation or a sensor is obviously reading wrong. Mid watch last hitch we were all hands due to repeated alarms during a critical maneuver…all over a defective sensor. A smart system could have alerted the engineer as something to check rather than nearly shut the whole rig down. Rest hour efforts, wasted too. Do the newer, like less than 2-3 year old systems consider this stuff at all? Especially sucks when it has to be silenced in nearly a half dozen locations too!

The speaker module for my alarm system is removable. I have one speaker with a hole that has a very subtle alarm, which I use daily. I also have a brand new speaker, which screams annoyingly, that I pop in for inspections. :smiley:

[QUOTE=“Louisd75;126873”]

This was a topic that was also brought up in the accident report for the Queen Mary 2 when one of the harmonic filters exploded. From page 54 of the QM2 accident report:

Full report is here: http://www.maib.gov.uk/cms_resources.cfm?file=/QM2Report.pdf

One of the ships I was on we would put the Grainger catalog on the silence button. We would still get alarms but the buzzer would not sound. There weren’t any computers involved though. Now with all of the automation everything is on a computer, so you get the alarm and it flashes on the screen along with a buzzer. It’s a two step process to get the buzzer silenced and make the alarm list stop flashing so that you can actually see what the heck is going on. If the alarm clears, you have to go to another list to see what it was. It’s really handy having another person (cadet) in the control room who just hits the silence button.[/QUOTE]

To say nothing of those mates setting off fan alarms!

[QUOTE=fwesoon;126659]You can bet there’s going to be a lot of inspections being made on a lot of new and recent build rigs and ships. Those blu block things are everywhere.[/QUOTE]

One has to wonder which type of penetration seals were class approved in the drawings and if they were ultimately the ones installed in the build. That would then come down to the New Construction Surveyor. If the substandard penetrations were approved, then the onus would be on the engineers. If the penetrations used differed from the ones approved. . . . . well, that surveyor better be looking for other means of employ.

[QUOTE=z-drive;126878]On a tug with limited crew excessive alarms are a huge hazard IMHO.[/QUOTE]

Information overload has been documented in countless aircraft accidents as a contributing factor. The phenomenon has been studied to death and, like fatigue studies, has paid the salaries of generations of researchers.

The aviation industry has made a lot of progress but the problem still exists. As far as I know, there have not been any serious efforts to apply the results of those regularly repeated studies (all with identical findings) to the maritime industry. The families of politicians don’t work on ships or boats and the chances of an out of control tugboat falling on a congress critter’s lobbyist financed mansion is pretty slim.