Proceedings magazine is a communication tool for the Coast Guard's Marine Safety & Security Council. Each quarterly magazine focuses on a specific theme of interest to the marine industry.
Issue link: http://uscgproceedings.epubxp.com/i/665311
26 Proceedings Spring 2016 www.uscg.mil/proceedings safety culture to address the inherent dangers of this indus- try as well as the potential for human error and omissions. This safety-focused concept was not new to the liquefed gas industry during the late 1990s and early 2000s, when the International Safety Management (ISM) Code and similar U.S. domestic requirements were implemented, requiring safety management systems for all types of deep-draft inter- national vessels and some domestic ships. Commitment from top management, cargo operational and emergency procedures, and regular process reviews on liquefed gas carriers were put into place decades earlier — some even dat- ing back to the principal concepts established in the 1950s by the pioneers of the industry's frst purpose-built liquefed gas carriers — that have been maintained ever since. So why did this industry focus so strongly on safety to achieve an across-the-board "gold standard" from the start? This question can be answered by understanding what a liquefed gas cargo is, the unique hazards associated with it, and the public's concern for the perceived risks these hazards pose on the water. According to the International Maritime Organiza- tion (IMO), a liquefed gas is a gaseous substance at ambient temperature and pressure, but liquefed by pressurization, refrigeration, or a combination of both. 1 The principal liquefed gas cargoes include liquefed natural gas (LNG), liquefed petroleum gas (LPG), liquefed ethylene gas, and a variety of petrochemical gases. Each type of liquefed gas has specifc hazards, some that are common with other hydrocarbons and some that are unique to them- selves and/or other liquefed gases. For more than a half century, the maritime community has been safely transporting liquefed gases over the water throughout the world, providing clean-burning fuel and feedstock to industrialized and developing regions of the globe. Because of the unique properties and hazards associ- ated with liquefed gases, safety at all stages is paramount. Safety First It is this mindset across the industry that has allowed it to maintain such an excellent safety record throughout its more than 50-year history. Much like the key goal of a safety management system (SMS), the liquefed gas commu- nity — including regulators, independent standards orga- nizations, trade organizations, and, most importantly, the industry itself — all seek to maintain an across-the-board Strengthening Our Foundation Fostering an even more robust safety culture within the liquefed gas industry. by CDR JAson smiTh Detachment Chief Liquefed Gas Carrier National Center of Expertise U.S. Coast Guard Vessel Inspections Figure 1: The primary components of raw natural gas, and how the different types of natural gas are utilized in the marketplace. U.S. Coast Guard graphic.