5/28/2015: Safety alert – fire extinguishing systems

The Coast Guard issued marine safety alert 6-15 due to recent safety concerns discovered on vessels with fixed CO2 fire fighting systems. It is critical that operators of vessels with fixed CO2 systems are familiar with the operation of the systems; conduct periodic inspections of the systems for readiness and know the signs for detecting when a discharge has occurred. It is recommended that the appropriate crew members receive training on CO2 system operation and its basic components.

Recently, during the annual servicing of a KIDDE CO2 system onboard a passenger ferry, a technician and Coast Guard marine inspector discovered that an undetected discharge of the CO2 system within the emergency generator room had taken place. Although the time of the inadvertent discharge could not be determined, the cause was due to be a worn internal mechanism within the control head.

Due to the risks associated with an inadvertent discharge of a fixed CO2 system, the Coast Guard strongly recommends that owners and operators ensure that appropriate vessel personnel:

  • Receive adequate training to perform routine inspections of their vessel’s fixed CO2 systems and fully understand their operation, particularly those protecting large spaces or multiple areas,
  • Frequently review and update operating manuals, checklists, and safety management systems associated with vessel extinguishing systems onboard, and
  • Post clear instructions for fixed CO2 system emergency operation.

 

For further information, please view the entire marine safety alert.

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.

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