21st June 2019

Over the last week, Intertek Lintec has tested a number of fuel oil bunker samples from vessels that have taken fuel in PALMA, with tested flash points below the ISO 8217:2005 / 2010 / 2012 / 2017 minimum requirement of 60°C.

The flash point of a fuel is the temperature at which flammable vapours ignite when an external flame is applied. The minimum flash point for fuel in the machinery space of a merchant ship is governed by international legislation and the value is 60°C.

SOLAS (Safety of Life at Sea) regulations state – “except as otherwise permitted by this paragraph, no oil fuel with a flashpoint of less than 60ºC shall be used;

Refer to the Recommended procedures to prevent the illegal or accidental use of low flashpoint cargo oil as fuel adopted by the Organization by resolution A.565(14).

Vessels that have been supplied with low flash point bunkers will need to store the fuel with extreme caution as follows:

a) The ambient temperature of the space in which the fuel is stored should not be allowed to rise within 10°C of observed flash point.

b) Avoid hot working or any other heat source in the immediate area of the fuel oil storage tanks and vents.

If your vessel recently bunkered in PALMA or the surrounding areas we would strongly recommend that you have knowledge of the quality of the fuel prior to use.

Ensure that the samples are taken correctly together with the supplier at the custody transfer point (Barge Manifold / Receiving Vessel Manifold) and witnessed by the ship’s crew. The seal numbers of the samples drawn on the basis of the contract of supply must be recorded on the Bunker Delivery Note (BDN).
If you wish to discuss any of the points highlighted in this bunker alert, please feel free to contact our technical team on +44 (0)1325 390183 or email lintec.results@intertek.com.