10 - Hazards related to specific types of ships or cargo
10.1 Dangerous goods in packaged form
10.1.1 The atmosphere of any space containing dangerous goods may put at risk the health or life of any person entering it. Dangers may include flammable, toxic or corrosive gases or vapours that displace oxygen, residues on packages and spilled material. The same hazards may be present in spaces adjacent to the cargo spaces. Information on the hazards of specific substances is contained in the International Maritime Dangerous Goods (IMDG) Code, the Emergency Procedures for Ships Carrying Dangerous Goods (EMS) and Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS)1. If there is evidence or suspicion that leakage of dangerous substances has occurred, the precautions specified in section 9 should be followed.
10.1.2 Personnel required to deal with spillages or to remove defective or damaged packages should be appropriately trained and wear suitable breathing apparatus and appropriate protective clothing.
10.2 Liquid bulk
The tanker industry has produced extensive advice to operators and crews of ships engaged in the bulk carriage of oil, chemicals and liquefied gases, in the form of specialist international safety guides. Information in the guides on enclosed space entry amplifies these recommendations and should be used as the basis for preparing entry plans.
10.3 Solid bulk
On ships carrying solid bulk cargoes, dangerous atmospheres may develop in cargo spaces and adjacent spaces. The dangers may include flammability, toxicity, oxygen depletion or self-heating, as identified in the shipper's declaration. For additional information, reference should be made to the International Maritime Solid Bulk Cargoes (IMSBC) Code.
10.4 Use of Nitrogen as an inert gas2
Nitrogen is a colourless and odourless gas that, when used as an inert gas, causes oxygen deficiency in enclosed spaces and at exhaust openings on deck during purging of tanks and void spaces and use in cargo holds. It should be noted that one deep breath of 100% nitrogen gas will be fatal.
10.5 Oxygen-depleting cargoes and materials
A prominent risk with such cargoes is oxygen depletion due to the inherent form of the cargo, for example, self-heating, oxidation of metals and ores or decomposition of vegetable oils, fish oils, animal fats, grain and other organic materials or their residues. The materials listed below are known to be capable of causing oxygen depletion. However, the list is not exhaustive. Oxygen depletion may also be caused by other materials of vegetable or animal origin, by flammable or spontaneously combustible materials and by materials with a high metal content, including, but not limited to:
grain, grain products and residues from grain processing (such as bran, crushed grain, crushed malt or meal), hops, malt husks and spent malt;
oilseeds as well as products and residues from oilseeds (such as seed expellers, seed cake, oil cake and meal);
wood in such forms as packaged timber, round wood, logs, pulpwood, props (pit props and other propwood), woodchips, woodshavings, wood pellets and sawdust;
jute, hemp, flax, sisal, kapok, cotton and other vegetable fibres (such as esparto grass/Spanish grass, hay, straw, bhusa), empty bags, cotton waste, animal fibres, animal and vegetable fabric, wool waste and rags;
fish, fishmeal and fishscrap;
sulphidic ores and ore concentrates;
charcoal, coal, lignite and coal products;
direct reduced iron (DRI);
metal wastes and chips, iron swarf, steel and other turnings, borings, drillings, shavings, filings and cuttings; and
When a ship is fumigated, the detailed recommendations contained in the Recommendations on the safe use of pesticides in ships (MSC.1/Circ.1358) should be followed. Spaces adjacent to fumigated spaces should be treated as if fumigated.
1 Refer to the Recommendations for material safety data sheets (MSDS) for MARPOL Annex I oil cargo and oil fuel (resolution MSC.286(86)).
2 Refer to the Guidelines on tank entry for tankers using nitrogen as an inerting medium (MSC.1/Circ.1401).