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New marine safety system launched

Posted on Wed, May 25, 2016

Safety_Management_System_training.jpgExecutive management from Naknek Barge Lines, Bering Marine Corporation and Alaska Marine Lines met in Seattle earlier this year for the first training session to launch the joint Marine Safety Management System (SMS).  They were joined by Jim Maltby, Lynden Director of HSSE, and Rheagan Sparks, Lynden’s Marine Risk Manager.  Their objective: to educate participants about the internal audit processes within the SMS and to prepare them to conduct field audits aboard Lynden vessels during the 2016 operating season.

The first day of the training, led by Lynden Consultant Dione Lee of QSE Solutions, consisted of classroom learning and goal identification.  Participants took their newfound skills into the field on day two by conducting mock vessel audits aboard the Naknek tugboats Crosspoint and Polar Wind (see photo).  The group took turns in the roles of auditor and crew.

 Implementation of a formal Safety Management System is a growing trend in the maritime industry, according to Rheagan. “Since the acquisition of Northland Services in 2013, the three primary Lynden maritime companies have been working to consolidate their pre-existing procedures into a more coordinated format,” she says. “The SMS allows the companies to standardize and document their procedures.  This is part of a continually evolving process of improvement that reduces the likelihood of accidents and promotes a culture of safety.”  The new SMS system is endorsed by Lynden’s maritime liability insurer, Steamship Mutual P&I Club, positioning Lynden as an elite operator within the maritime industry.

 Captains from Naknek, Bering Marine and Western Towboat Company gave positive feedback about the January training.  “The SMS manual mostly reflects what we already do, but now it’s documented and accessible for everyone,” says Tim Kinkopf, Naknek General Manager. Future training sessions for vessel crews are scheduled later this year.

Tags: Bering Marine Corporation, Alaska Marine Lines, Safety, HSSE

New barge ramps in Ketchikan, Petersburg

Posted on Wed, May 18, 2016

After 30 years of service, Alaska Marine Lines’ Ketchikan barge ramp has moved to Petersburg. In its place is a new port cargo ramp constructed by Western Towboat. “We are excited to have a new ramp in Ketchikan and also happy to provide Petersburg with the first cargo ramp ever installed at that port,” says Southeast Alaska Marine Operations Manager Ricky Morgan. Removing the old ramp and installing the new one was a two-week process and included seven days of repairing and repainting the existing floatation tank system.New_barge_ramp_-_AML_Ketchikan.jpg

Both ramps are 120 feet long and 24 feet wide. The Ketchikan ramp operates by an onshore air supply system which supplies air to a flotation tank bolted to the ramp. The beach end pivots at the abutment connection. “The new ramp has a refined and stronger barge end transition design,” Ricky explains. “The old design put the ramp surface about 16 inches above the barge deck when the ramp was set in place on the barge. This required an additional wedge transition piece to be set in place to allow forklift access.” The new design has closed that gap to only 4 inches and it features a small transition plate, fixed to the end of the ramp by a hinge.

Petersburg’s ramp project was completed in April. The Petersburg crew is working on repairs and fabricating modifications to change it from a flotation support to an A-frame design. The ramp will also be sandblasted and painted.

According to Ricky, the Petersburg operation has been a “pass/pass” operation for many years. “With the cargo ramp installation, we have to reconfigure the dock face pilings and install a pedestal and electrical system for the A-frame.” A large concrete abutment must also be installed to anchor the ramp into the beach. “Having a fully operational cargo ramp in Petersburg should greatly increase productivity and operational efficiencies,” he says.

Ricky recognized the Ketchikan and Petersburg operations groups for their assistance with the project as well as Western Towboat for fabrication of the new ramp and A-frame. He also commended the Ocean Navigator Crew for their assistance with transporting both ramps to their new homes. “Special thanks to Gary Peterson, Rick McKinley, Rex Mansfield and Tom Sheehan, our expert team of crane operators, who executed safe precision while removing and installing the extremely heavy ramp system in Ketchikan,” he added. “And to Gordon Lindblad, who orchestrated every detail of this project, from start to finish, safely and efficiently.”

Tags: Alaska Marine Lines, barge service, Alaska, Ketchikan, Petersburg

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