Between April and October, Houston Ship Channel has very large schools of menhaden, krill and small fish within its banks. This has caused almost daily incidents which occasionally result in vessels without power anchoring in the channel.
These sea creatures can clog up and reduce the flow of seawater though ships’ sea strainers, which in turn can have an adverse effect on the cooling median for main engines, generators and auxiliary equipment.
Houston pilots say that with proper planning from engineering personnel, the issue can be resolved in a few minutes rather than several if the crew is not prepared. They therefore strongly recommend that the following preventive actions be taken:
– Verify that main high and low sea suction strainers are clean before transiting.
– Have spare clean strainers available in the event the baskets need to be pulled for cleaning.
– Have the necessary tools in place such as chain-falls, sockets, and impact wrenches for completing this task.
– Ensure that engineering personnel are familiar with crossing over and securing the sea water cooling systems if need for cleaning.
– Consider switching from low to high suctions before beginning transit in the ship channel.
– Have extra personnel rested and readily available for the transit if needed to assist.
– Ensure that the duty engineers are closely monitoring sea water cooling systems, especially for spikes in cooling water temperatures, and are familiar with the operational parameters of those systems.
For information about operations in the USA contact GAC North America at firstname.lastname@example.org
Dredging off Kai Tak Cruise Terminal
May 05, 2015, Hong Kong, Hong Kong
For approximately 10 months, dredging operations will be carried out [off Kai Tak Cruise Terminal] within the area bounded by straight lines joining the following co-ordinates (WGS 84 Datum) from (A) to (J):
(A) 22 deg. 18.496’N / 114 deg. 12.463’E
(B) 22 deg. 18.395’N / 114 deg. 12.575’E
(C) 22 deg. 18.299’N / 114 deg. 12.675’E
(D) 22 deg. 18.154’N / 114 deg. 12.661’E
(E) 22 deg. 18.010’N / 114 deg. 12.647’E
(F) 22 deg. 18.057’N / 114 deg. 12.530’E
(G) 22 deg. 18.092’N / 114 deg. 12.568’E
(H) 22 deg. 18.225’N / 114 deg. 12.576’E
(I) 22 deg. 18.266’N / 114 deg. 12.579’E
(J) 22 deg. 18.422’N / 114 deg. 12.394’E
The works will be carried out by a flotilla of vessels including one grab dredger, four hopper barges, one derrick lighter, three tug boats and one survey boat. The number of vessels engaged in the works will change from time to time to suit operational requirements.
A working area of approximately 50 metres around the dredger will be established. Yellow marker buoys fitted with yellow flashing lights will be laid to mark the positions of the anchors extending from the dredger.
The hours of work will be from 0700 to 1900 hours. No works will be carried out on Sundays and public holidays. Vessels engaged in the works will stay in the works area outside the hours of work.
Silt curtains, extending from the sea surface to the seabed, will be established within the works area. The silt curtain is a large piece of netting used to contain mud and sediments.
Vessels engaged in the operations will display signals as prescribed in international and local regulations.
Vessels navigating in the vicinity should proceed with caution.
(For information about operations in Hong Kong contact GAC Hong Kong at email@example.com)
Source: Government of Hong Kong SAR Marine Department Notice No.65 of 2015
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