For over a century, lifeboats have been the traditional means of ensuring safety in emergencies at sea. However, when evacuating a large number of passengers, a more effective solution is needed.
Marine Evacuation System (MES) – an optimal solution in the maritime industry – plays a crucial role in ensuring the safety of passengers and crew on ships during emergency situations. Nonetheless, many people still have questions about how MES works and its features. In this article, we will address common questions related to ship evacuation systems.
What is the marine evacuation system?
Marine evacuation system is a vital component on passenger ships, facilitating mass evacuation through inflatable evacuation chutes that are automatically deployed. Passengers can quickly evacuate directly into ready-to-use life rafts.
Components of the system
A typical system comprises five components:
- Control Unit: Used to initiate the system in emergency situations.
- Stowage box: Contains essential evacuation equipment, such as sliding chutes, fixed fixtures like seats, and rails.
- Slide Chute: Attached to the ship and life rafts, these chutes are compactly stored within the container. They are made of nylon fabric coated with polyurethane for durability. The height of the slide chute can reach up to 13.6 meters, with single or dual evacuation slides depending on the ship’s size.
- Liferaft: These life rafts are used to hold people in emergency situations. Depending on the MES system, each container may hold from 1 to 4 life rafts.
- Winch: Used to transport life rafts from the ship to the water.
Why should you use a marine evacuation system on ships?
MES takes up minimal space on the ship’s deck, typically located at the ship’s bow and on both sides. It requires less time and resources for installation and operation, making it highly advantageous in cases of large-scale emergency evacuations. MES systems are designed to evacuate up to 700 people from the ship to life rafts within 30 minutes.
How does the marine evacuation system work?
MES is a system that provides mass evacuation capabilities through inflatable escape slides and automatically deployed chutes, allowing passengers to evacuate swiftly into life rafts.
MES requires only 1-2 personnel for deployment during emergencies. In such situations, the chute automatically descends into the water, where the life rafts are ready for use (automatic inflation is triggered by a hydrostatic release unit). The entire process takes about 90 seconds. Once the life rafts are ready, everyone is instructed to jump into the life rafts through the slide chute.
How should MES systems be maintained?
- Daily inspection: Perform a daily check to ensure that the system is not damaged. This includes checking the structure, coverings, and other critical components of the system.
- Regular inspections: Conduct regular inspections according to the prescribed schedule. This may include inspecting the pump system, valves, straps, and other safety equipment to ensure that the system functions correctly.
- Maintenance: Perform scheduled maintenance to replace any worn or damaged parts. According to SOLAS requirements, MES must undergo an annual inspection to ensure the system is always ready for effective operation in case of need.
Where can you find a reputable maintenance service for marine evacuation systems in Vietnam?
When searching on social media platforms, you will come across numerous companies providing maintenance services for marine evacuation system. So, which company can you trust before making a decision?
With nearly 20 years of experience in the maritime industry and a commitment to service quality, GOTCO is one of the leading companies in the maritime sector, ready to meet all customer requirements:
- 7 maritime service stations spanning from the North to the South of Vietnam, allowing customers to quickly resolve any issues.
- A team of highly trained and GOTCO-certified technicians ready to provide the best solutions to our customers.
- The quality of GOTCO’s services is strictly controlled according to ISO 9001:2015 standards