CIC Inspection Campaign on Emergency Systems and Procedures in in progress from 1 September 2019 to 30 November 2019. Emergency generator operations, familirisation of the vessel staff with its operations are checked in details during the CIC inspection.
There have been numerous detentions recently with respect to onboard emergency generators, the common deficiencies include following:
Case 1- Emergency generator not connecting to emergency switchboard automatically
Case 2- Insufficient quantity of fuel oil for emergency generator
Case 3- Emergency generator F.O. service tank quick closing valve not functioning
CASE 4 – emergency diesel generator was unable to supply the required voltage and the means of shutting off fuel valves from a remote location, was inoperable.
SOLAS REQUIREMENT FOR EMERGENCY GENERATOR:
Regulation 43.3.1 of SOLAS Chapter II-1, Where the emergency source of electrical power is a generator, it shall be:
- driven by a suitable prime-mover with an independent supply of fuel having a flashpoint (closed cup test) of not less than 43°C;
- started automatically upon failure of the main source of electrical power supply unless a transitional source of emergency electrical power in accordance with paragraph 3.1.3 is provided;
- where the emergency generator is automatically started, it shall be automatically connected to the emergency switchboard;
- those services referred to in paragraph 4 shall then be connected automatically to the emergency generator; and unless a second independent means of starting the emergency generating set is provided, the single source of stored energy shall be protected to preclude its complete depletion by the automatic starting system; and
- provided with a transitional source of emergency electrical power as specified in paragraph 4 unless an emergency generator is provided capable both of supplying the services mentioned in that paragraph and of being automatically started and supplying the required load as quickly as is safe and practicable subject to a maximum of 45 seconds.
Regulation 43, Paragraph 4
- The transitional source of emergency electrical power where required by paragraph 3.1.3 shall consist of an accumulator battery suitably located for use in an emergency which shall operate without recharging while maintaining the voltage of the battery throughout the discharge period within 12 percent above or below its nominal voltage and be of sufficient capacity and shall be so arranged as to supply automatically in the event of failure of either the main or the emergency source of electrical power for half an hour at least the following services if they depend upon an electrical source for their operation:
- the lighting required by paragraphs 2.1, 2.2 and 2.3.1. For this transitional phase, the required emergency electric lighting, in respect of the machinery space and accommodation and service spaces may be provided by permanently fixed, individual, automatically charged, relay operated accumulator lamps; and
- all services required by paragraphs 2.4.1, 2.4.3 and 2.4.4 unless such services have an independent supply for the period specified from an accumulator battery suitably located for use in an emergency.
Best Practices to be followed
- When checking the emergency generators regularly and before an inspection, make sure to check:
- The generator starts and it is in good condition.
- The means of starting are working and in good condition.
- PMS routines on Emergency Generator matching the manufactures requirement
- PMS routines for Emergency generator are duly completed.
- Ensure critical spares for emergency generator are available onboard. Verify inventory with the stock statement in PMS.
- Running test on Emergency Generator with Emergency Generator running on full load for at least 30 minutes every 3 months being complied with.
- When checking the emergency generators regularly and before an inspection, make sure to check that the the generator starts and it is in good condition. and the means of starting are working and in good condition.
- Verify crew familiarity with the operation of Emergency generator and various starting modes provided.
- Ascertain specific training needs of each crew members with respect to emergency equipment’s and impart necessary onboard training.
- It is very important not only for the engineer officer but also for the deck officer/crew to know the ways of starting and testing the emergency generator.