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THOME OME Document No.

014
SHIP MANAGEMENT PTE LTD Bunker Management and Operations

however this would differ based on the construction of the tank and the location of the
sounding / air pipes.
• Topping off rates should be agreed with bunker supplier during pre-bunker transfer meeting
and should be mentioned in bunker safety checklist OME Doc 014, Section 1
• When such deviation is deemed necessary- vessels shall load excess bunkers (from 90% to
95%) as per above mentioned topping off rate regardless of remaining quantity to be
received.
• Final topping off should be carried out under direct supervision of the Chief Engineer, with a
responsible person monitoring the loaded tanks soundings.
Additional guidance shall be given on case to case basis by vessel manager/marine HSSEQ Supt. as
office response to Risk Assessment.

14.6.10 DURING BUNKERING

Continuous observation and monitoring


The rate of bunkers being loaded and onboard quantities must be continuously monitored throughout
the whole operation. The engineers assigned to this task will not release or hand over this duty to
their assigned relieves before being assured that all the required handover information has been duly
transmitted and understood and the Chief Engineer has been informed accordingly.
For ships that don’t have high level alarms in their bunker tanks, two man sounding system to be
strictly enforced.
The Deck Watch shall pay due attention to the bunker barge moorings and pilot ladders must be
rigged (no Jacobs ladder) with adequate lighting in order to avoid unnecessary risks to bunkering
personnel. All main deck scuppers shall be plugged throughout.
Proper tightness of scupper plugs to be regularly checked during repetitive checks by pulling up the
scupper plugs by hand.

Ullages
Tank ullages must be regularly monitored and recorded during the bunkering operation using a
sounding tape in addition to any readings obtained from any remote gauging system.
Maximum interval for tank soundings / ullaging during bunkering operation should not exceed 30
minutes.
Record of the tank sounding / ullaging is to be maintained.
A comparison between sounding tape readings and remote gauging system readings should be
made regularly.
Any unexpected ullage or any uncertainty regarding ullages must be reported to the Chief Engineer
immediately.

Self-Closing Sounding Pipes


Sounding pipes located in the engine room, steering flat and other enclosed spaces are usually fitted
with self-closing devices.
On no account must these ever be locked or tied in the open position.

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Temperatures, density and flow meter


Temperature and density will be measured during the bunkering operation according to the stated
procedures as defined by the Chief Engineer. The results will be compared with figures given by the
supplier. If hydrometer is not available on board, the Chief Engineer must requisition hydrometers for
measurement of densities in the range of densities - 0.8 to 1.1.
If any difference between supplier’s and ship’s figures is noticed, the Master must issue a letter of
protest in a format according to charterer’s or operators standing instructions. When a flow meter is
used, the meter readings are to be verified by the Chief Engineer both before commencement and on
completion of bunkering. The figures must be checked against ship’s figures.

Temperature Limits
When loading bunkers into ship’s tanks which are in service, fuel oil temperature shall not exceed
140°F (60°C) or a maximum temperature of 10°C below flash point or fall below a temperature at
which viscosity increases above the easy pumping limit. In each case bunkering shall be stopped.
U.S.C.G. and SOLAS regulations including Class rules do not permit a flash point of less than 60°C.
Refer to Appendix 3 – 46CFR 35.25 – 10 Requirements for fuel oil

Topping Off and Completion


When the bunkering nears completion, tank ullages should be verified continuously. The responsible
engineer will keep the Chief Engineer advised and will comply with the agreed stop procedure. The
rate of transfer must be slowed down as agreed with the supplier when the tanks reach 85% of their
capacity.
Upon completion of the bunker transfer the responsible engineer shall ensure that all valves used are
closed, only after consulting with, and upon receipt of the order from, the Chief Engineer.
The Deck Watch must keep the master updated about the expected completion of the bunkering
operation.

Shut Downs
Any incident resulting in an unacceptably elevated risk, whether by inadequacy of procedures or by
violation and / or failure to comply with procedures, will be reported and investigated in accordance
with Company Health, Safety, Security, Environment and Quality(HSSEQ) Management System
requirements.
Oil transfer must be stopped if the risk cannot be managed.
A standard shut-down is to be considered to be identical to an `emergency shut-down' in terms of the
process involved and is to be carried out with an appropriate degree of urgency.
• A `SHUT DOWN ' is considered to mean that the liquid flow is stopped and valves
are progressively shut to normal pre-operation isolation status.
If necessary, disconnection and blanking will take place.
• A SHUT DOWN will be initiated if there is any change in the situation which alters the
status of any item on the Bunkering Safety Checklist resulting in an unacceptably
elevated risk situation.
• A SHUT DOWN will be initiated if there is any change in the parameters used in
compiling the Bunkering Plan, or which could lead to change in expected outcomes,
or exceed the calculated values used in the Bunkering Plan.
• A SHUT DOWN will be initiated if there is any doubt or reason to consider that a spill
has or is likely to occur.
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• After a SHUT DOWN the bunkering operation is not to be re-commenced until the
stated SHUT DOWN criteria have been cleared and the Chief Engineer has given
permission to resume the bunkering operation.

Post-Operation Review and Debriefing


A post-operation review and debriefing of the bunkering team will be carried out to identify:
• Any inappropriate acts that may have occurred
• Any near misses, hazardous occurrences or any non-conforming incidents
• Any areas of potential improvement to the operation
This review will be signed off by the Master and Chief Engineer, to indicate that the operation is
completed and the requirements of this procedure have been complied with.

Quantities loaded
The tank ullages and temperatures recorded by the responsible engineer will allow the Chief
Engineer to verify the quantity received onboard which is to be compared with information given by
the supplier.
On occasions owner and / or charterer will appoint a surveyor to perform a quantity survey.
When no surveyor has been appointed, and assuming safe access between ship and terminal or ship
and bunker barge, the Chief Engineer or responsible engineer nominated by the Chief Engineer will
measure both the supplier’s and ship’s tanks before and after the bunkering operation.
Bunker Receipts can only be signed by the Master and / or the Chief Engineer for quantities received
at average temperature.
Any paper or document presented by the supplier and which purports or implies indemnity to a
bunker supplier or his representatives must never be signed.
If the supplier’s quantity exceeds the ship’s quantity by 0.5% or if the bunkers contain an excessive
amount of water (maximum 1% by volume) a Letter of Protest shall be presented to the supplier’s
representative and the TSM technical department must be notified immediately.

14.7 RECOMMENDATIONS TO BE OBSERVED


Inspection of Bunker tanks
CE must request for and ensure that a ship’s engineer gauges the bunker barge’s tanks before and
after bunkering.
This must be done even if an independent Bunker Surveyor has been appointed.
(In case of a dispute, the 3rd party Bunker Surveyor will just absolve himself of all responsibility & the
entire responsibility of any shortage or other dispute will be solely the CE’s).

14.8 SPECIAL OBSERVANCE REQUIRED / CAPPUCCINO EFFECT


Sign of Irregularity
During Bunkering, be alert and observe any signs of the barge pumping in air which will result in froth
in the oil. Signs to be noted:-
• Bunker hose jerking or whipping around.

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• Gurgling sound when standing in vicinity of bunker manifold.


• Fluctuations of pressure indication on manifold pressure gauge.
• Fluctuations of level indication gauge of bunker tank (if fitted).
If any such symptom is observed, please ask the barge Master to desist from such erratic operation.
If frothing is suspected in the bunkers received in ship’s tank - Pour a bucket of MDO into the
sounding pipe before taking sounding. The froth will subside immediately. Readings obtained after
pouring MDO will be almost true reading of tank. In most cases – the barge operator will notice the
MDO bucket near the sounding pipe and will not fool around any further – knowing full well that we
know how to tackle the subject issue.
Howsoever, if the operations persist, ask barge master to stop bunker operation completely and call
your Technical Superintendent.

Once Irregularity is suspected / confirmed


Request for and make a photocopy of the Barge’s sounding table relevant page - once at start / once
at stop. (Cheating barge operators maintain 2 sets of sounding table – one for start of bunkers / one
for end of bunkers). In Singapore, the MPA has a copy of the barge’s "official sounding table” on their
records. Our photocopy can be compared with MPA records – in case of dispute.
In any case – once we request for photocopy of barge tables – Barge operator will tend to not fool
around further.
The Technical Superintendent in coordination with Charterer/ Owner will request for an investigation
by an independent Bunker Surveyor. Superintendent will then advise vessel further course of action.
Do not disclose the received quantity to the barge officer or to any independent Surveyor till all final
calculations are completed. Do not sign the BDN unless a clear understanding and confirmation of
the received quantity is reached
In case of severe and brazen case of threatening the CE to force his signature on BDN – Inform the
Barge operator that our office has asked Coast Guard to board the vessel – we are awaiting their
arrival before we will sign the BDN – usually the crooked barge operators will accept the CE’s figures
and disappear quickly from the scene.
We understand that in general remarks on the BDN are not acceptable. However it becomes very
difficult to pursue the matter at a later date if the figure shows the complete quantity entered as
‘received’ in the BDN and no comment of any dispute is noted. Kindly note that a BDN is a negotiable
instrument hence action can be initiated based on BDN.
At the very least a LOP must be issued, and immediately sent to the Superintendent & to the
Charterer/Owner who has nominated the bunker supply.

How to confirm irregularity – (Cappuccino Effect)


Whenever there is a doubt of air entrapment one needs to allow about 2 ~ 3 hrs, between initial and
2nd ullaging. There will be a trend in change of ullage that will give a clear indication of bunkers
settling down as the bubbles are dispersed to vent.
In case of doubts of air entrapment, CE must advise the Master immediately that the vessel will need
to wait for a period of time to reconfirm the quantities received. In this case the Master will contact
TSM VM and the Charterer to confirm the delays to the ship.
For a quick confirmation if air bubbles are present, please open the bunker tank manhole and lower a
20 litre bucket to take sample from the top, the froth will be pronounced in the sample. The difference
in liquid and froth can be visually confirmed by pouring into a transparent glass bottle. In a deep tank

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the froth level can be up to 1 meter. Typically the cappuccino effect may take up to 48 hours to settle.
For a high viscosity grade at lower temperatures, the effect will take longer to clear.
If the rate of transfer of the bunkers is high there is a potential for build-up of pressure within the
receiving tank which can produce an erroneous higher level of fuel within the sounding pipe.
Pressure build up within the tank may also be due to the bursting of the entrapped air bubbles from
the cappuccino effect. Sufficient time should be allowed for the pressure within the receiving tank to
subside to atmospheric pressure in order to obtain a correct reading.
Bunker tank vent pipes are fitted with flame arrestors made of wire mesh. Due to degradation in
service the mesh tends to rust which can cause blockage and choking. A reduction of the
permeability can cause pressure build up within the tank. It is recommended to clean/replace the wire
mesh at 6 monthly intervals.
The importance of accurately declaring the exact quantity of Bunker ROB at arrival in the relevant log
books cannot be overemphasized.
Under NO CIRCUMSTANCES should there be any extra or “UNOFFICIAL ROB”. These figures will
support our case at the time of a bunker dispute resolution – otherwise the quantities measured by a
3rd party surveyor will not match the ship’s log book figures and undermine our case.

Remember
The idea of air blow at the end of bunkering is to remove all remnants of oil from the bunker hose.
Please note that this is only done at the end of bunkering operations and there is a distinct gurgling
sound of air flowing through the pipe, and the pipe at the manifold will vibrate or sway during this
operation.

14.9 OPERATION WITH MASS FLOW METER


This section is meant for guidance to ship staff receiving bunkers from tankers equipped with
approved Mass Flow Metering Systems.

Prior Bunkering
Bunker Tanker shall provide copy of following documents for verification and signing by Chief
Engineer and Bunker Surveyor (if engaged):
a) Bunker Requisition Form (Mass Flow Metering)
Chief Engineer should confirm the Quantity, Grade of Bunkers, sequence of bunkering,
bunkering rate etc. Bunkering rate should be within the calibrated flow range for the Mass
Flow Meter System of the bunker tanker (as stated on the stamping plate of the meter).
Meter Calibration certificate should be available on board the bunker tanker, for verification,
upon request.
b) Mass Flow Metering System Seals Checklist
The Metering System Diagram and all Sealing Points shall be checked and confirmed to be
intact. In the event of any discrepancies (if any seal is missing or broken or seal number not
matching), the matter shall be reported immediately to the Implementing Authority. The meter
shall not be used for the custody measurement of bunker transfers until the missing or
broken seal is replaced and approved for use by the Implementing Authority.
c) Meter Reading Record Form (Delivery)
Opening meter reading shall be checked and recorded before commencement of bunkering
operation. It should be set to zero, wherever resettable totalizer meters are fitted.

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During Bunkering
Bunker Tank Gauging is still important for verification, close control of bunker tank filling levels and
timely action to prevent oil spill, and as a contingency / back up in case MFM System breaks down.
Flow rate should be maintained within the calibrated flow range of the Mass Flow Meter
All stoppages should be recorded, with details.

Tank stripping and line cleaning


Tank stripping and line cleaning should only be conducted at the end of the bunkering operations.
After pumping operation is completed, Cargo Officer of the bunker vessel shall notify the Chief
Engineer and Bunker Surveyor (if engaged) prior to the commencement of line clearing operation.
No air compressors or air bottles shall be used by the bunker tanker for the line clearing process.
It should be carried out by closing the discharge valve after the pump, building up the pressure in the
pipeline using pump, opening the discharge valve for the remaining bunker in the bunker hose to be
cleared into the vessel’s tank. The line clearing process shall not be repeated more than twice after
the completion of the pumping operation.

After Bunkering
Bunker Tanker shall provide copy of following documents for verification and signing by Chief
Engineer and Bunker Surveyor (if engaged):
a) Mass Flow Metering System Seals Checklist
The Metering System Diagram and all Sealing Points shall be checked and confirmed to be
intact (not tampered) in the course of bunkering.
b) Meter Reading Record Form (Delivery)
Closing meter reading & quantity of the bunker delivered shall be checked and recorded after
bunkering operation.
c) Bunker Metering Ticket shall be printed at the end of delivery and filed for reference.
It should contain information on Name of bunker tanker and craft licence number (SB no.);
Meter Unique Identification Number; Bunker start date & time; Bunker end date & time; Print
time; and Mass in Air.
d) Bunker Delivery Note (BDN)
The BDN shall comply with the IMO regulation 18(3) of Annex VI MARPOL 73/78. All relevant
and applicable columns of the BDN shall be filled in, and “NA” (Not Applicable) shall be
inserted in those blank columns. Any cancellation or amendment on the BDN shall be
endorsed and stamped by the Cargo Officer and the Chief Engineer.

Quantity Dispute
In the event of any dispute at the end of the delivery with respect to the quantity of bunkers delivered,
Chief Engineer and the Bunker Surveyor (if engaged) should act as follows:
a) Re-witness the meter totalizer readings.
b) Re-check all sealing points based on the sealing plan and confirm all seals listed in the seal
verification report are intact.
c) Confirm that all relevant lines have not been modified from that as stated in the piping
diagram.

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d) Obtain and examine photocopies of the relevant pages of the bunker tanker’s Meter Totalizer
Log showing all the totalizer movements related to the bunker delivery.
e) Examine and obtain copies of certificates / documents listed below:
• Meter Calibration Certificate
• Metering System Diagram and Sealing Points
• Meter Seal Verification Report
• Meter Zero Verification Report
• Cargo System Piping Diagram
• Mass Flow Metering Procedure for Bunkering endorsed by Implementing Authority
• Mass Flow Metering System Approval Letter from Implementing Authority for
Custody Transfer
• Copy of Enhanced bunker Cargo Officer Course certificates accompanied with photo
identity of the Cargo Officer.
• Last certificate of quality or equivalent document by the cargo provider (terminal or
ship)
f) If any of the preceding steps are disallowed, the reasons shall be recorded in a note of
protest by the Chief Engineer and Statement of Facts by the Bunker Surveyor (if engaged).
g) The Bunker Surveyor (if engaged) shall record all the relevant details and findings of the
dispute in a Statement of Fact. This document should be completed and acknowledged by
the Chief Engineer and / or Cargo Officer of bunker vessel.
h) If the dispute remains unresolved, the Chief Engineer shall raise a Note of Protest and get it
signed by the Cargo Officer of the bunker vessel.

14.10 RECORDS
The Chief Engineer notes all information regarding bunkering operations in the engine room log book
(chronology of events and quantity of bunkers loaded).
This same information plus movements of the supply barge are filled in by the officer on watch in the
cargo or Port Log Book.
Bunkering operations must be recorded as per MARPOL instructions in the Oil Record Book Part I.
Other documents:
• Bunker Delivery Notes
• Bunker Sample Record or Log Book
• Bunker Operations Checklist
• Bunkering Plan
• Record of Training
• Minutes of Pre – Transfer Conference
• Shore Analysis Documentation
• Letters of Protest
• Sounding Books

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• Request to Witness Sampling


• Minutes of Post – Operation Review
All relevant documents are to be filed.

14.11 QUALITY AND SAMPLING


14.11.1 GENERAL
TSM have concluded with a Fuel Analysis Vendor nominated for your vessel a contract for bunker
sample analysis.
The bunker analysis results will be advised to the vessel and the company.
The vessels under contract with Fuel Analysis Vendor are equipped with the sampling kit and empty
plastic bottles for the special samples.
Inform TSM Technical Department when the sampling bottles are out of stock, TSM will do the
necessary to deliver new ones.
TSM Technical Department should be informed each time samples have been taken, mentioning how
many samples have been sent for analysis, thus enabling follow up.

14.11.2 SAMPLING REQUIREMENTS


Annex E and Annex F stipulates comprehensive sampling requirements.

14.11.3 SAMPLING PROCEDURES


The custody transfer sample shall be taken at the manifold (thereby ship’s manifold is the point of
custody transfer) of the vessel. The sample collected in this manner shall constitute the
representative sample of the bunker operation.
Annex G shall be consulted upon for guidance.
The Chief Engineer shall ensure that the sampling container is clean and with transparent wall so
that continuous drip is visible.
Sampling instructions shall be followed meticulously.
Ensure that the Line Sampler is ready for use with a new collection container.
Complete a ‘Request to Witness Sampling’ form, and give top copy to the supplier or supplier’s
representative. Retain copy for the ship’s file. If the supplier or supplier’s representative declines to
attend the witnessing of sampling, this fact shall be recorded in the ship’s logbook.
Take sample by adjusting the Line Sampler flow valve to give a slow continuous drip throughout the
bunkering period. Use the security seal facility to prevent tampering. Ensure that approximately 5
litres is collected from each barge or over the bunkering period if from one source.
Once the sample has been collected, seal the container and shake vigorously to mix the sample
thoroughly, then fill 4 sample bottles, and making several passes, fill to indicator line, and seal.
NB: Security seals must have a unique identification number.
Cap and seal the sample bottles recording unique security seal numbers in the Chief Engineers
report form and in the ship’s logbook.
Complete sample bottle labels and sign for then in front of, and together with, the supplier or
supplier’s representative. Fix label to bottle.

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If offered a sample by the barge crew, and you have not witnessed correct sampling procedures,
ensure that it is stamped ‘For Receipt Only – Source Unknown’. In addition, sample labels presented
before bunkering operations commencement, must not be signed.
Forward samples as per test laboratory instructions, including one to the supplier or supplier’s
representative. If the supplier or suppliers representative discards the sample this fact shall be
recorded in the ships’ logbook.
The 2 ship’s samples shall be retained onboard in a secure location.
Where fuel delivered is found to be unsuitable for use, TSM Technical Department must be informed
immediately and a report submitted as soon as practical. The aforementioned actions are of the
utmost importance in that the terms and conditions under which bunker fuels are supplied normally
contain strict time limits for the notification of claims.
Typical time limits are:

Quantity claims and disputes 7 days

Quality claims and disputes 7 days

Other claims and disputes 28 days

Apart from the laboratory sample, at least three additional representing ship samples of about 1 litre
are to be taken of each fuel quality supplied.
These samples are to be distributed as follows:
• 1 set to be kept on board for a period of at least 12 months
• 1 set for fuel supplier
• 1 set to be kept onboard as MARPOL 73/78 Annex VI fuel oil sample for a period of
at least 12 months
• Also: 1 set for surveyor (when applicable)

14.12 SOUNDING OF FUEL OIL TANKS


Thome emphasizes vessels to keep factual records. Vessel must never report over or under
quantities of the bunkers.
Regardless of whether or not vessels are equipped with fuel oil flow meters, tanks must be surveyed
/ soundings taken manually on daily basis (weather permitting) to ascertain the quantity of fuel oil.
Chief Engineer shall prepare the report and notify Master in his daily noon report.
In addition to daily checks, all fuel oil tanks shall be surveyed / soundings taken manually on
following occasions,
• Weekly report to TSM, VM.
• On arrival in port immediately after F.W.E.
• Within three to four hours prior departure from port
• Prior to and upon completion of bunkering operations.

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• During handing over /taking over of Chief Engineers as per TSM 078 – Incoming C/E
shall personally verify/witness soundings and prepare bunker survey report for all
fuel/diesel tanks.
In order to curb malicious practices on-board TSM Managed vessels, unannounced bunker
surveys shall be initiated from TSM office.
Such surveys shall be conducted by visiting vessel manager, marine superintendent or
internal auditor on instructions from the Environment Compliance Manager or FGM.
Report of such bunker survey shall be sent to: FGM, ECM and COO.

14.13 ANNEX VI OF MARPOL 73/78


Although fuel oil quality is a matter between owners, managers, charterers and suppliers, under
Annex VI of MARPOL 73/78 it has also become a statutory matter.
In addition to requirements limiting the sulphur content of oil fuel, Annex VI contains requirements
preventing the incorporation of potentially harmful substances, and in particular waste streams (e.g.
chemical waste), into fuel oils.
Annex VI of MARPOL 73/78, Regulation 18 specifically requires that fuel oil supplied to ships is to be
free from inorganic acids or chemical wastes that could jeopardise the safety of the ship, be harmful
to ships' personnel, or which would contribute overall to additional air pollution.
The addition of small amounts of additives intended to improve performance is however permitted.

14.13.1 BUNKER DELIVERY NOTES


It is a requirement of Annex VI of MARPOL 73/78, Regulation 18 that any fuel oil for combustion
purposes delivered to and used onboard shall be recorded by means of a Bunker Delivery Note
(BDN).
This implies that a bunker delivery note shall be presented for every barge delivery and every grade.
Bunker Delivery Notes are required to contain all specific information as follows:
• Name and IMO number of receiving ship
• Bunkering Port
• Date of commencement of bunkering
• Name, address, and telephone number of marine fuel oil supplier
• Product name
• Quantity (metric tons)
• Density at 15 °C (kg/m3)
• Sulphur content percentage by mass (% m/m)
• A declaration signed and certified by the fuel oil supplier's representative that the fuel
oil supplied is in conformity with regulation 14 and 18 (I.e. that the fuel supplied has a
sulphur level below 3.5% and that the fuel is free from inorganic acid, does not
include any added substance or chemical waste which either jeopardizes the safety
of ships, adversely affects the performance of the machinery, is harmful to
personnel, or contributes overall to additional air pollution).
Further, Resolution MEPC.96(47) recommends that the seal number of the associated MARPOL
Annex VI fuel sample is included in the BDN’s for cross reference purposes.

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