One of the greatest perils to life and property encountered in the process of building and using boats, yachts, rafts, ships, and other vessels, whether at water or on land, is fire. Submarines and underwater technology constructions can be affected by fire as well, and there were such cases with devastating consequences.


A person can hardly imagine scope of devastation or speed of spreading of fires, but consequences are grave and hard each and every time. Blaze devours everything it comes across above the water level. Regardless of the fact that water is present everywhere around us, human life and property are always in jeopardy in case of a fire. For that reason, there are internatio-nal laws, state laws, river and marine laws, regulations, prevention and safety rules, which are all compulsory and have to be applied.

The most important and the safest method to be applied on the spot in mari-nas, harbours, shipyards, on vessels, plants or platforms on water is fire preven-tion, including taking direct measures on prevention of fire from braking out in the first place.

The fire prevention and safety measures should be taken by crew members, skipper, passengers, as well as by shipyards and owners, as we all share respon-sibility and obligation not to allow a fire to break out in any place at any time.

Firstly, it is necessary to raise awareness of everyone who spends time on any vessel, as even a small fire can turn into a raging fire and jeopardize people’s lives and property.

It is of utmost importance for everyone to be informed about danger zones on each location, where fire can break out easily, and the prevention measures are used to avoid that.

The most important prevention measures that passengers should know and apply in practice:

  1. Prior to commencement of sailing on smaller vessels and yachts, passen-gers should be informed and shown where life-saving and fire-extinguishing equipment is located. In case the skipper forgets to show that, passengers have the right to insist on that.

  1. It is desirable to wear reflecting protection suits, jackets or vests, or the ones with reflex strips.

  1. Should anyone notice any spark or smoke, cable damage, or heating device damage during their stay aboard a boat or a yacht, they should immediately inform the skipper or a crew member.

  1. Switching off appliances, lighting and heating appliances is obligatory when leaving any space. Pay special attention and caution in kitchen when preparing food, as the sea and rivers are unpredictable and the vessel may easily rock, which can cause spilling of cooking oil over heated surfaces, leading to strong flame or fire.

  1. Staff-only and crew-only spaces are not to be entered, especially engine ro-oms, as there are obligatory measures of safety at work to be applied prior to entering.

  1. Cigarettes, matches, lighters, or any other potential ignition sources should not be used in the vicinity of fuel or other flammable substances; they may be used only on specially designated places.

  1. It is forbidden to play with fire from lighters or matches on vessels or in marinas.

  1. Should anyone sense thick smoke, burning, gas, or should fire break out on a vessel, it is obligatory to leave the space without any delay, to move to the safest part of the boat and to wait on the deck for a rescue team to arrive, or to board a lifeboat or a life-raft.

  1. Should an uncontrolled flame appear for any reason close to passengers, and there is a fire extinguisher nearby, immediately activate and apply the fire extinguisher and put out the fire.

  1. It is forbidden to use water to put out a fire on electrical installations.

Skippers and professional staff are obliged to take the following measures of prevention:

  • to have solid knowledge of safety rules and regulations for fire and of emer-gency plan,

  • to warn passengers prior to getting aboard a vessel on protection measures against fire and show them the relevant places,

  • be familiar with operating of emergency alarm system, detectors, and fire emergency system checks,

  • make regular checks and maintenance of the vessel, installations, as well as of the fuel equipment and greasing equipment,

  • make regular thermovision checks of electrical installations and sources of heat,

  • run gas installation checks and use gas appliances correctly,

  • implement regular maintenance of the engine room and its cleanliness,

  • implement procedures on protection measures against fire and on measures to be taken in case of fire,

  • constant high caution when using fuel and flammable substances,

  • while working on a vessel it is important to implement all measures and acti-ons correctly and to take constant care about passengers.



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