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Safety Recommendation Details

Safety Recommendation M-89-047
Details
Synopsis: ABOUT 2325 ON MARCH 15, 1988, A FIRE OCCURRED IN THE ENGINE ROOM OF THE BAHAMIAN FLAG PASSENGER VESSEL SCANDINAVIAN STAR. AT THE TIME OF THE FIRE, THE SHIP WAS ABOUT 50 NMI NORTHEAST OF CANCUN, MEXICO, EN ROUTE FROM COZUMEL, MEXICO, EN ROUTE FROM COZUMEL, MEXICO, TO ST. PETERSBURG, FLORIDA, WITH 439 PASSENGERS AND 268 CREWMEMBERS ON BOARD. THE MASTER BROADCAST A DISTRESS MESSAGE AND ORDERED THE EVACUATION OF PASSENGERS TO THE FOUR MUSTER STATIONS ON THE SHIP. THE LOSS OF MAIN GENERATOR AND EMERGENCY GENERATOR ELECTRICAL POWER AND THE MALFUNCTION OF THE SHIP'S FIXED CO2 FIRE FIGHTING SYSTEM HINDERED EFFORTS TO FIGHT THE FIRE. THE INABILITY OF CREWMEMBERS TO COMMUNICATE WITH EACH OTHER AND WITH PASSENGERS CREATED CONFUSION DURING THE FIREFIGHTING AND EVACUATION ACTIVITIES. TWO CREWMEMBERS RECEIVED MINOR INJURIES DURING THE EMERGENCY. TWO PASSENGERS WERE MEDI VACED FROM THE VESSEL AND FLOWN TO A HOSPITAL IN ST. PETERSBURG, FLORIDA, WHERE THEY WERE TREATED AND LATER RELEASED. DAMAGE AND REPAIR COSTS WERE ESTIMATED AT $3.5 MILLION.
Recommendation: THE NTSB RECOMMENDS THAT THE U.S. COAST GUARD: PROPOSE THAT THE INTERNATIONAL MARITIME ORGANIZATION AMEND SOLAS '74 REQUIREMENTS FOR PASSENGER VESSELS TO: REQUIRE THAT THE EMERGENCY BATTERY SYSTEM SUPPLY POWER FOR THE SMOKE DETECTION DEVICES, THE FIRE ALARMS, AND THE PUBLIC ADDRESS SYSTEM.
Original recommendation transmittal letter: PDF
Overall Status: Closed - Reconsidered
Mode: Marine
Location: Gulf of Mexico, GM, United States
Is Reiterated: No
Is Hazmat: No
Is NPRM: No
Accident #: DCA88MM038
Accident Reports: Fire on Board the Bahamian Passenger Ship The Scandinavian Star
Report #: MAR-89-04
Accident Date: 3/15/1988
Issue Date: 8/8/1989
Date Closed: 8/21/1991
Addressee(s) and Addressee Status: USCG (Closed - Reconsidered)
Keyword(s):

Safety Recommendation History
From: NTSB
To: USCG
Date: 8/21/1991
Response: Safety Recommendation M-89-47 asked the Coast Guard to propose that the IMO amend SOLAS '74 requirements for passenger vessels to require that the emergency battery system supply power for the smoke detection devices, the fire alarms, and the public address system. We note that the requirements of this safety recommendation are contained in SOLAS Regulation 42, Chapter II-l. Therefore, it has been classified as "Closed--Reconsidered."

From: USCG
To: NTSB
Date: 10/25/1990
Response: I CONCUR IN THIS REC. IN PRINCIPLE. HOWEVER, SOLAS REGULATION 42, CHAPTER II-1 ALREADY REQUIRES A TRANSITIONAL EMERGENCY BATTERY SOURCE FOR THE SMOKE DETECTION DEVICES, THE FIRE ALARMS, & THE PUBLIC ADDRESS SYSTEM IN INSTANCES WHEN THE EMERGENCY GENERATOR FAILS OR EXPERIENCES OTHER DIFFICULTY IN STARTING & PROVIDING POWER.