Safety Management System implementation
Date issue released
Safety Issue Description

BBC Rhonetal’s managers had not effectively implemented the shipboard safety management system procedures in place to prevent the fire. This was the tenth such fire on a company ship in the past 14 years, and the fourth investigated by the ATSB, identifying similar contributing factors.

Issue number
MO-2021-002-SI-01
Issue Status
Open – Safety action pending
Transport Function
Marine: Shipboard operations
Issue Owner
Briese Heavylift and Briese Schiffahrts
Mode of Transport
Marine
Issue Status Justification

To be advised

Proactive action
Action number
MO-2021-002-PSA-01
Organisation
Briese Heavylift
Action Status
Monitor
Action description

On 16 August 2022, Briese Heavylift advised the ATSB that it intends to amend the shipboard procedures for hot work to better describe the role of the fire watch, emphasising its importance in fire prevention. Fire watch requirements are to be integrated into the hot work permit procedure and backpacks containing equipment that includes a portable foam extinguisher, ‘thunderer’ whistle, infrared camera and a high visibility vest will be provided for the fire watch.

Briese Heavylift also intends to educate shipboard crew on the amended procedures and the additional equipment, through a training video. This education is to be reiterated during ship inspections by shore-based staff.

ATSB Response

The ATSB acknowledges the safety actions proposed by Briese Heavylift, particularly the training and educational initiatives, which have the potential to adequately address this safety issue.

However, as there is no timeline for implementing these proposed actions, the ATSB remains concerned about the indefinite nature of the advised action. Further, this safety issue is applicable to ships managed by Briese Schiffahrts, the parent company, as well as those managed by its subsidiary companies. Therefore, addressing this safety issue will involve taking safety action across their fleets and, accordingly, the ATSB issues the following safety recommendations.

Safety recommendation
Action number
MO-2021-002-SR-01
Organisation
Briese Heavylift
Action date
Action Status
Monitor
Action description

The Australian Transport Safety Bureau recommends that Briese Heavylift takes safety action to ensure safety management system procedures for hot work on board ships that it manages are effectively implemented.

Safety recommendation
Action number
MO-2021-002-SR-02
Organisation
Briese Schiffahrts
Action date
Action Status
Released
Action description

The Australian Transport Safety Bureau recommends that Briese Schiffahrts takes safety action to ensure safety management system procedures for hot work on board ships that it manages, and ones managed by its subsidiary companies, are effectively implemented.