Reducing risks on ships: mitigating the risks and effects of fires on ships was the theme of the recent Fires on Ships seminar in London. FIRE looks at how risk based design and human behaviour modelling can help save lives and reduce damage.(Seminar Report)

Risk Based Design

Gordon Milne, Head of Risk Assessment and Marine Consultancy Services spoke on mitigating the risks and effects of fire by employing the latest design approaches.

The risk based design is required, he stated, because prescriptive rules are clear and accepted, build processes are understood and there is little need for unfamiliar analysis. A specific design is needed, he urged, because generic rules "probably don't cover your specific ship", and generic rules do not cover all aspects of operations.

Alternative designs can then be introduced, he suggested, which can enhance safety levels. He advised that rules can be broken, "as long as the outcome is acceptable", as he informed, a change in the marine culture accommodates a risk based approach.

Pressing for design safety as a design goal, rather than a design constraint, is essential, Mr Milne said. …

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