NEAR MISS – OIL POLLUTION - PREVENTED :
CAPT. P Ananthan
The ship was handy size product tanker and the ship loaded HSD, at New Horizon terminal, Singapore. Vessel loaded 98% full in all 14 cargo tanks. Loading arm disconnected, ullaging and survey completed. Chief officer was in CCR doing cargo calculations. Master and 2/O were on the bridge doing control testing.
Two shore personnel were carrying out open sampling, accompanied by Bosun. All port side tanks were completed and when they started sampling 1S, Bosun went aft for some small work. Shore personnel opened the ullage port without closing individual IG valve/de-pressurizing the tank, which caused cargo overflow through ullage port. Bosun rushed forward and shut the unlace port immediately. The pressure was 1100 mmWG .
Since this was done very quickly, the spilt cargo could be easily contained by the crew and nothing went to the sea, thus a major pollution was averted.
Lesson learnt :
1.never keep the IG pressure inside the tank so high after loading it fully.
2.Always keep the pressure at bare minimum required level.
3.shore personnel should be always accompanied by the ship board people while doing ullaging or sampling.
4.as far as possible avoid open sampling.