F/V Northern Jaeger Outside Emerald Marine Products

F/V Northern Jaeger Visits Emerald Marine Products

Every once in a while we are pleased to see a vessel sailing up Puget Sound past the Emerald Marine Products office that is a customer of ours. We were pleased to see the F/V Northern Jaeger sail by last Saturday. The Northern Jaeger proudly uses the ALERT418 Man-Overboard Alarm System to protect the crew working near the stern of the ship.

American Seafoods has been a great customer of the Emerald Marine Products MOB awareness product line for many years. Recently they upgraded the ALERT2 system to the ALERT418 system which provides the ship with additional information in the event of a Man-Overboard incident.

We strongly believe that all commercial fishing vessels, especially the smaller family-owned fleets would benefit from the life-saving capabilities of the ALERT Man-Overboard Alarm System. From automatic alert within seconds, to engine-kill capabilities to entended alerting capabilities, the ALERT Man-Overboard Alarm Systems is the best choice for commercial fisherman. For further information contact us.


Commercial Fisherman with ALERT2 MOB Device

Commercial Fisherman Need a Man-Overboard Alerting Device

Lore and TV Shows showcase the danger involved in making a living as a commercial fisherman. It’s that time of the year when commercial fishermen leave their loved ones to provide a decent working wage fishing.

Whether you’re a solo fisherman or part of a crew, your exposure to the dangers of the high seas. Long hours, rouge waves, misplaced objects, improperly placed stowage, are all opportunities to create a man-overboard situation. If you or a crew member falls overboard and no one knows about it, a fatality is sure to occur. A fatality that affects loved ones emotionally and finacially for generations.

The ALERT Man-Overboard Alarm System protects crews and solo fisherman who wear the lightweight and durable Transmitter. This device is automatically activated in the event of a fall-overboard, and its Spray-Tight Pouch will protect from false alarms when working in wet conditions. Should a simple mistake take a person over the side of a boat, the ALERT System will instantly notify the vessel. If you are a solo fisherman, the boat can be wired for engine-kill which could give you the opportunity to swim back to the boat.

We encourage you to take a look at our line of Man-Overboard Alerting Devices made with industrial-grade products for years of lasting protection. Your loved ones will be glad you took the time and made the investment to save your life.


marine Engine kill device

Wired for Engine-Kill

The phrase, “Wired for engine-kill” has a very serious tone to it. And It should. The practice of killing an engine at an appropriate time can save a life. A kill switch or emergency cutoff switch is a safety mechanism used to shut off machinery in an emergency. Kill switches or emergency cutoff switches are manufactured in many forms for uses within different industries. For explanation purposes, we refer to the marine industry’s use of a kill switch as an engine-kill switch.

Emerald Marine Products has been manufacturing a man-overboard alarm which includes the technology to turn off an engine since 1996. The ALERT Man-Overboard Alarm System effectively works as a kill switch for the boat’s engine, hence the term “engine-kill.”

The Benefit of Engine-Kill Technology

Engine-kill technology is one of the most important tools for man-overboard boat safety. A boat underway encounters various circumstances that could cause the pilot to be ejected from the boat. If the person ejected is the sole occupant, or the only person capable of maneuvering the boat, it’s a matter of life or death that the person can make it back to the boat. On average, using our ALERT Man-Overboard products, a quick engine-kill from a fall overboard can stop a boat within seven seconds. Making it possible to swim back to a boat. Another life-saving reason for an engine-kill on the boat is to prevent the “Circle of Death” a maneuver by an unmanned boat that will cause it to cruise in circles that could actually “run over” the person in the water.

Marine Circle of Death

Here is a video highlighting the “Circle of Death” issue. https://www.passagemaker.com/trawler-news/uscg-requires-engine-cutoff-switches-on-more-boats?jwsource=cl

Installing Engine-Kill Technology is Easy and Required by Law

Since the 1970’s the United States Coast Guard (USCG) has investigated the risks of cruising solo with engine-kill technology installed on a boat. As the years have passed, technology to install engine-kill capability in a boat has evolved, making the installation and use of this life-saving technology easier, more affordable and less obtrusive. In December 2018, Soundings Trade Only Today magazine reported “in December (2018 Congress) passed the Frank Lobiondo Coast Guard Authorization Act of 2018, which includes a provision requiring boat and engine manufacturers, distributors and dealers to install engine cutoff switches on new boats “less than 26 feet overall in length and capable of developing 115 pounds or more of static thrust.”

The requirement pertains to inboards, outboards and sterndrives. The switches must meet American Boat and Yacht Council standards.” Click here for the full article. 

At Emerald Marine Products, we believe this technology is also essential for a solo fisherman and single-hander,regardless of boat size and date of manufacture.Even more important that someone who is operating a boat alone, is protected and safe in the event of a fall overboard. We also believe that the need to install an engine-kill technology increases as the value of the occupants increase. Any commercial fisherman should have engine-kill technology installed on their boat, as highlighted by one of our customers https://emeraldmarineproducts.com/testimonial/cruising-home-at-16-knots/

Emerald Marine Products has been providing life-saving technology to the maritime industry for over twenty years. We were one of the first to market engine-kill technology in our products. We would be happy to discuss what system might work for your particular circumstances. Recreational or Commercial. Contact us using our contact page or simply call us at 800-426-4201 and we will have an honest conversation on what technology will work best for you to protect yourself and your crew.


Man-overboard protection continues during COVID-19 crisis

Man-Overboard incidents continue, so we are continuing operations

We hope that you and your teams are healthy and safe.

On March 22, 2020, Washington Governor Insley issued Proclamation 20-25 requiring Washitonians to stay at home, closing specified retail businesses, and requiring social distancing measures and other restrictions. We want to let you know that Emerald Marine Products is not included in the list of businesses prohibited from operating.

Emerald Marine Products’ diverse customer base in marine transportation, commercial fishing, water rescue personnel, and terminal services qualifies us as an Essential Critical Infrastructure Workforce. The Man-Overboard Alerting devices we provide to our customers are critical for maintaining the continuity of safety products to Critical Infrastructure Sectors as defined by Homeland Security and CISA.

Now might be a good time to inspect your ALERT Transmitters

Occasionally we receive ALERT Transmitters to inspect and repair. We are pleased to see well-worn transmitters. It shows that they are being used in heavy industrial applications protecting employees. It also shows the reliability of our man-overboard transmitters, as some of these transmitters are in their fifth or sixth or even longer year of service.

If your company is experiencing a slow-down due to the Coronavirus, or weather, this might be a great time to inspect your ALERT Man-Overboard Alerting products to make sure they are functioning properly. For testing procedures and other important videos on maintaining your ALERT products, click here.

This may also be a good time to make sure the batteries in the unit are at the voltage they should be. For ALERT2 Transmitters make sure the unit has 3.6-volt lithium batteries. Never put 1.5-volt Alkaline batteries in the unit. The alkaline batteries may produce enough power to provide a positive test of the unit but do not provide the needed voltage for transmission strength and longevity. For proper placement of batteries for ALERT2 Transmitters, click here.

Do not hesitate to reach out to us with questions and to communicate any impacts this situation may be having on your operations.


Coronavirus and Emerald Marine Products

The maritime industry is grappling with safety issues never imagined a few months ago. We are already witnessing the impact of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) on world trade, international travel, and our economy. Emerald Marine Products, like all of our industry partners, take the impact of Coronavirus very seriously. As a manufacturer of man-overboard alerting devices, we are ensuring that our manufacturing supply chain and distribution are operating in accordance with the CDC. More than ever, as crews are limited and people are social distancing, we need to ensure that every person working near or on the water is protected in the event of a fall overboard.

Emerald Marine Products is working with our suppliers and testing stations to ensure all products are sanitized. Our preferred shipping vendor, United Parcel Service (UPS) had also written of their continued efforts to make sure products shipped through their service are compliant with procedures to limit the spread of the Coronavirus. You can view UPS response here: click here.

Emerald Marine Products is aware that the current situation of the Coronavirus has the full attention of a company’s Health, Safety, and Environment (HSE) department. We recognize the main concern of these departments is keeping employees healthy and having evacuation procedures in place in the event a crew member becomes sick on a vessel. We would like to recommend a variety of resources to support your organizations:

For the most up-to-date information regarding Coronavirus and the maritime industry, we suggest visiting the American Waterways Operators (AWO) Coronavirus (COVID-19) website: https://www.americanwaterways.com/covid19.

Another great source for HSE Departments is Fusion Technology’s Pandemic Plan Template which steps through the various stages and processes to monitor and have in place procedures to protect your employees:https://www.pandemicreadinesstoolkit.fusionrm.com/s/.

In response to the current COVID-19 crisis, Emerald Marine Products wants to assure our current customers and other companies doing more with less, that we are staffed and supplied to support your man-overboard alerting needs quickly and efficiently. At this time of social distancing and less staff, We urge you to ensure your employees are protected in the event of a fall overboard. Emerald Marine Products is committed to working as quickly as possible to find solutions for your crew members and shore side workers to be protected and safe.  Setup and procedures for our ALERT Man-Overboard Alarm System are quick and easy. We are available to assist with any questions you might have about our fall overboard alerting devices, training dummies and MOB retrieval products. Further information on our life-saving products can be found at www.emeraldmarineproducts.com.

As the Coronavirus impact changes daily, we are all working to mitigate the further spread of this virus, protecting our employees and our way of doing business. The Maritime industry is vital to the health of our country and international trade. We are proud of the hard work maritime companies, and their most valuable asset, their employees are accomplishing to keep our economy strong during these unsettled times. We at Emerald Marine Products are grateful for the industry’s efforts and hope to be of continued service protecting employees from fall overboard fatalities through this crisis and for years to come. Plan, protect, stay safe.


SCF Lewis & Clark Fleeting have excellent MOB procedures and testing in place!

When Deckhands or Shore-Side Workers go Missing

We are not addressing work stoppage, strikes or just plain no-show incidents. We are addressing when a worker who executes their job on or near water suddenly disappears. Potentially into the water!

Any company that has employees working on or near water grapples with the concern of a Fall Overboard or MOB incident. It’s in the back of their safety-conscious mind every day. Does it keep them up at night? Hopefully not. The truth is most companies that work on or near water have a plethora of safety issues to deal with. In Emerald Marine Products’ experience, a MOB is one of those “put it on the back shelf” concerns. Statistically, it’s not a top safety concern but the implications of an MOB are far greater than a fall, collision, or medical issue.

A non-fatal MOB will most certainly cause a work stoppage, a potential medical issue and possibly a lawsuit. A fatal Mob will most certainly cause a work stoppage, an investigation by law enforcement, a potential medical issue and most certainly a lack of confidence from the employees and a lawsuit. The financial cost of a non-fatal or fatal MOB can be drastic. “That’s what we have insurance for” is not a defense for not having awareness of MOB issues and address the concern. Insurance may take care of some financial aspects of an MOB incident, but damage to the employees’ confidence, the company’s reputation and the soul retching guilt of the incident can be caustic to the companies future. On the last point alone, we have heard of a non-fatal MOB cause a suicide because the person in charge of the person who fell in the water (but survived) felt so guilty they didn’t better protect them.

You know MOB awareness, protection and rescue needs to be addressed, but where do you begin? As with any procedural change in an organization, change begins with education. Educate yourself and all stakeholders on what a MOB situation is. How vulnerable are your employees to such an incident? If your employees work on or near water, of course, the potential is there. But is the potential of a MOB increased due to; long work shifts, employees out-of-sight from other employees, weather extremes, inexperience, etc? As the potential grows, the implementation of a MOB plan is essential. What’s next?

You are determined to put an operational procedure in place to train your employees on both the hazards of an MOB and most important a response to a MOB. Emerald Marine Products has been manufacturing MOB alerting products for over twenty years. It is with our partnership with C-Hero, manufacture of MOB retrieval products, that our ability to offer companies a complete solution in awareness and retrieval of MOB incidents is complete. Emerald Marine Products and C-Hero have taken the mystery out of MOB awareness, operational execution and continued compliance.

First, begin with awareness. Outfitting any employee working on or near the water with proper protection such as Personal Floating Device (PFD), head, hand, footgear, VHF radio, personal light beacon, and our ALERT Man-Overboard Transmitter. Train your employees of root causes of potential fall situations (tripping on lines, fatigue, misplace objects). All employees working on or near water should be tested in MOB procedures regularly.

Actual MOB procedures can be easily found and adopted by your company if not already implemented. However, in our research, we have found most implementation is lax and irregular. Demand that all supervisors adhere to strict execution on both the exercise and frequency of the MOB test. Outfitting your company with a life-like victim such as our OSCAR – Water Rescue Training Dummy will provide years of easily maneuvered MOB testing procedures. An MOB drill should not use anything less than a full-grown adult victim in both size and weight. Using any training device not the size and weight of an adult is an affront to both your commitment to properly trained employees and the true readiness in the event an actual MOB occurs.

Realistically, what is the ability of your employees to provide a MOB retrieval in a timely manner? If your operation is shore-side and the water has a fast-moving current, how quickly will the person in the water be out of sight? Out of range of a local retrieval? This is a concern that needs to be addressed quickly. If the retrieval will come from another source, do employees in the rescue process know who to contact? Test it! If a local retrieval is possible (such as the boat the person just fell off of), is the rescuer’s ability to properly navigate the rescue boat and able to get the MOB out of the water in a timely fashion? Again, test it!

C-Hero makes several retrieval products to fit your company’s needs and budget. But in all safety procedures, the budget should not drive the solution. If your operation requires a device to lift a person out of the water, and no device exists on your boat, you need to budget for a lift. If all you need to get the MOB to the area where they can be safely lifted out of the water, then explore what type of retrieval product(s) will work best for the physical abilities of your employee. It is the repeated testing of a MOB drill that you will discover or confirm that your process is effective. If testing is frequent and consistent, you will see the level of confidence grow in your employees. Empowering them to be aware of a fall overboard concern will increase their vigilance of fellow employees’ whereabouts. Increasing the safety net within your company’s safety culture.

What about a safety culture once set and then management changes break down the compliance? C-hero has built a robust training and compliance application that is easy to administer. It allows for a step-by-step approach in MOB retrieval training. Once trained, the employee is video recorded in their participation in the training procedure. The video is then reviewed by management and given an approval rating. Annual compliance of each employee can be easily administered. The process can become the “heavy hand” that further institutes compliance within your company.

If Deckhands and Shore-Side Workers going missing is a concern of yours. If the responsibility of your employee’s well-being is a concern of yours, there are products and plans available to easily implement into your safety culture. Contact Emerald Marine Products to discuss your needs when addressing the issue of your employees working on or near water. Addressing your concerns now; before an unexpected event brings a costly accident to your attention.


Three Missing After Towing Vessels Collide

RC Creppel. File Photo: MarineTraffic.com / Craig Creppel

Please note that the purpose of this article is to educate the maritime industry of our products and the solution they can offer.

As a manufacturer of products specific to fall overboard alerting and retrieval, we monitor the news for fall overboard incidents. Just today we read once again about an incident where a fall overboard product may have helped save lives. Many times, when companies research our product, they are amazed it exists and see it as an affordable solution to head off the tragedy of a fall overboard incident. We don’t want to be the maritime industry’s best-kept secret; we want to be top of mind if protecting your employees from fall overboard situations that may concern you.

It was reported today that three persons are missing after two towing vessels collide on the Mississippi River. G Captain online report stated, “The U.S. Coast Guard says watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector New Orleans received a report at 5:37 a.m. (Sunday, January 26th) that the towing vessel RC Creppel and the towing vessel Cooperative Spirit had collided. Four crew members of the RC Creppel were initially reported missing. One person was recovered from the water by a Good Samaritan. The search for the other three is ongoing.
Local media reported that one person was rescued and taken to the hospital where they are in stable condition. The Cooperative Spirit was reportedly transiting upbound on the river when it entered a barge fleeting area and allied with barges before colliding with the towing vessel RC Creppel, the Coast Guard said in a statement. The cause of the collision is under investigation.”
For the full article, visit gCaptain.

When crew members wear a fall overboard alerting device, such as our ALERT Man-Overboard Alarm Transmitter, the automatic water-activated device begins to transmit within seconds that a fall overboard has occurred to the vessel’s ALERT Receiver installed on the boat they just fell off of.
Our products are not to be confused with Emergency Positioning Indicator Radio Beacon (EPIRBs) which are ideal when a person needs to abandon ship. ALERT2 and ALERT418 products work when the abandon ship was totally involuntary, such as a fall overboard induced from a myriad of reasons, a collision from another vessel is one of them.
In the case of the event outlined above the fall overboard alerting would have been just one of many calamities occurring at once. However, ALERT products continue to transmit up to 40 hours. The 418MHz frequency can be heard with a portable direction finder, providing an opportunity to find the FOB before the rescue turns into a recovery.
Our thoughts and prayers go out to the victims and survivors and their families of this latest maritime tragedy. Emerald Marine Products is dedicated to alerting, training and recovery of fall overboard situations. We hope that these types of tragedies can be averted in the future


Confusing terms of man-overboard alerting products.

Confusion About Man Overboard Alerting Devices?

MSLD, EPIRBs, Personal Locator Beacons, are all search terms that define a device to alert of a person unintentionally in the water. Regardless of the term, our product if the most proven and defined Fall Overboard Alerting Product on the market.

There are about a dozen products on the market that are identified as fall-overboard locator beacon products. Two commonly used terms now used to market these devices are “Maritime Survivor Locating Devices (MSLD)” and a more recently introduced term, “Personal Man Overboard Beacons”. They are generally placed in five different categories:

    1. Automatic Identification Systems (AIS)
    2. VHF DSC frequency 156.525 (Channel 70)
    3. 121.5 MHz distress channel
    4. Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon ( EPIRBs) transmitting to the Cospas-Sarsat Satellite
    5. Proximity transmission

In our article that goes into detail about these different type of alerting devices, we hope to clear up some of the confusion. To read the article, click here.

 


United States Coast Guard

United States Coast Guard Issues Safety Alert Reassessing Man-Overboard Risks

On April 24th, The United States Coast Guard released a Safety Alert reassessing man-overboard risks in response to a fatality that occurred while a personnel exchange was taking place at sea. You can read the full Safety Alert here  In the Alert it was stated, The ship’s Boatswain and Ordinary Seaman (OS) were manning the port side shell access port and pilot embarkation space behind a hydraulically operated bi-fold hatch door and were preparing for the pilot’s arrival. The port was located forward of the house and approximately 13-feet above the waterline. The Boatswain and OS were unable to monitor the seas from their position behind the hatch door. As the two crew members were in the process of opening the door, seas unexpectedly struck and violently forced it open, flooding the space. The OS was not wearing a harness or safety line nor a personal flotation device; he was subsequently swept out to sea. The Boatswain was forced onto the deck whereby the pilot ladder fell on him, fracturing his leg. The side shell door also sustained structural damage during the incident. Coast Guard Sector New York launched an extensive search and rescue mission that was terminated with no success after 28 hours. The OS was lost and presumed dead.”

The Safety Alert goes on to state, “This casualty reiterates the dangers of personnel exchanges at sea, especially in heavy weather conditions”. Emerald Marine Products agrees that casualty can occur in heavy weather conditions but we have historically seen casualties and near fatalities relating to man-overboard incidents occurring even in calm weather conditions. As reported in the past, man-overboard incidents are caused from many conditions, such as tripping on misplaced objects, dehydration, exhaustion, poor training. Regardless of weather, actions should be taken by companies to assure their employees are protected.

The Safety Alert goes on to state; “The Coast Guard strongly recommends owners and operators of deep draft vessels:

  • Review vessel Safety Management Systems, procedural manuals and guidance that relate to pilot transfers and update as appropriate, considering risks revealed by this casualty;
    • Reinforce the importance for crew members to wear personal protection devices and safety lines when working over the side of a vessel, when exposed to the elements or when there is an absence of a barrier that prevents an accidental water entry;
    • Ensure officers and crew identify potential hazards and conduct a risk assessment, to include consideration of weather conditions, prior to opening the side shell port hatches;
    • Ensure crew communications between Navigation Watch Officers and crew are clear and provide suitable supervision of activities, considering sea state and other changing conditions.”

Emerald Marine Products has heard that more Form CG-835V have been issued to companies that don’t fully comply with Management Safety Systems (SMS) or Towing Safety Management Systems (TSMS). In light of this latest Safety Alert, we are sure the US Coast Guard will be actively looking at many companies compliance with SMS or TSMS.

When companies review their SMS or TSMS policies they should seriously look at the ALERT Man-Overboard Alarm System. In the case of the tragedy outlined earlier, the use of the ALERT system would have helped to track the seaman who was swept out to sea. The ALERT Man-Overboard System is recognized as the leading and fastest indicator of a man-overboard situation. Our automatic water activated transmitters report to the wheelhouse or other monitoring station within seconds of a MOB. A visual of a person in the water will assure a quick response and will be integral in the execution of your MOB recovery outlined in your SMS or TSMS. Why not invest in an alerting system that compliments your mandated MOB procedures? The investment is a fraction of your cost to implement a SMS or TSMS and will pay dividends by providing your employees with the confidence that in the event of a man-overboard incident, the crew will be notified within seconds, and tracking in the event that the MOB is lost will help in their quick recovery.

For more information about our products and how we help companies comply with their Safety Management System or Towing Safety Management System procedures, contact Emerald Marine Products via this contact link or call, 800-426-4201.


MOB Rescue with OSCAR - Water Rescue Training Dummy and C-Hero Lift.

Partnership That Saves Lives

Shane Smith, Founder of C-Hero, a manufacturer of life saving products contacted Emerald Marine Products in 2016 with one goal, increase the chances of saving a life of a tug boat crew member. In 2016, Captain Smith was developing a product that within three years would become a certified type-approval. Specific to International Maritime Organization A520(13) operational readiness requirements for vessels with lower freeboards.

Emerald Marine Products worked closely with C-Hero in the development of their C-Hero Lifting Davit and C-Hero VR-12 Reach poll because our products were so closely aligned and Captain Smith’s knowledge and passion for safety. As Captain Smith expressed when he first contacted Emerald Marine Products, “My product gets a person out of the water, quickly and safely. Your product lets the boat know you have someone in the water in the first place. Before you have a rescue you need to have an alert of a man-overboard.” Captain Smith really understood the impact of a total solution to someone falling in the water. First comes the alert, then the training of a crew so they can spring to a rescue effortlessly and quickly. Finally, the retrieval of the person quickly and safely. “Due to the height and reach of a tugboat, rescue products on the market were not adequate for tugboats”, Captain Smith iterated. Though designed for the tugboats, the C-Hero Lifting Davit works with all other types of vessels such as ferries, push boats and ocean supply vessels (OSV), hence the recently certified type-approval to meet SubchapterM requirements. The USCG (SubM) option boats are required to perform a Man –Overboard (MOB) drill for the USCG at the time of Certificate of Inspection (COI). In 137.215 (4) a surveyor has to examine systems in support of drills and training to ensure that it operates as intended.

Emerald Marine Products is proud to be an adjunct to the SubchapterM requirements and a partner with C-Hero. Together, we provide a total Man-Overboard Alert and Rescue solution with our ALERT Man-Overboard Alarm System, OSCAR – Water Rescue Training Dummy and C-Hero’s Lift Davit and VR-12 Reach Pole. For more information about these products contact Emerald Marine Products via this contact link or call, 800-426-4201.