ship handling

Home page|| Tanker Notes || Container Ship Operations || Ocean Navigation ||



Guideline for Oil transfer system on board ship

Liquid cargo is nowadays usually transferred using an articulated arm loading/discharge systems, and groups of arms are often found on a shore refineries or on offshore loading facilities. It connects to the tanker’s manifold usually located near the centre of the ship.

Before commencing fuel oil transfer operation, chief engineer shall post cargo information as described .


Oil transfer system


A line diagram of the vessel’s oil transfer piping including the location of each valve, pump, control device, vent and overflow. The location of the shut-off valve or other isolation devices that separate all bilge or ballast system from the oil transfer system.
cargo transfer system for oil tanker
Fig: cargo transfer system for oil tanker


Cargo piping – tankers

Cargo piping in tankers is usually mild steel and is protected from rusting by external painting. Most large oil tankers have a ring main system that allows increased operational flexibility but with the penalty of reduced segregation.

Tankers fitted with deep-well pumps in cargo tanks have dedicated piping. Each tank will have its own pump, pipe and cargo manifold. Stainless steel piping is invariably used with stainless steel tanks. On chemical tankers, cargo pipes must be joined by welding. Flanged connections are allowed on oil tankers, as well as on chemical tankers at valve connections and for fitting portable spool pieces, which are removable short lengths of pipe used for segregation of piping. Regular pressure testing of cargo pipes is essential to detect weak points before they fail.

Hydraulic piping systems

Hydraulic pipes are high-pressure pipes. Hydraulics are used for:
It is a requirement that hydraulic systems for steering, pitch control and watertight doors have dedicated piping and pumps.
Some hydraulic fluids are highly flammable. As a result, hydraulic equipment and pipework must be kept clear of hot surfaces.
Alternatively, hot surfaces must be protected by spray shields. It is important to prevent the external corrosion of hydraulic piping located on deck. Hydraulic pipes operate at very high pressure and corrosion-induced weakness frequently causes hydraulic pipes to burst. A high standard of cleanliness is necessary when working with, or replacing, hydraulic piping. Check the systems regularly for leaks, corrosion or mechanical damage.
Use only good-quality and clean hydraulic fluid.


Oil discharge containment and procedures for emptying the oil containment.


33CFR155.320
The oil discharge containment is a metal box welded to the deck under or around each fuel oil, bulk lubricating oil tank vent, overflow, and filling pipe in accordance with 33CFR155.320. Drop the oil into fuel oil tank using the by-pass valve or transfer into the fuel oil tank by other methods.

Oil Discharge Monitoring And Control Equipment

Vessels fitted with equipment for monitoring the discharge of effluent from slop tanks must ensure that this equipment is operational before any discharge is made. The operation of this equipment must be in accordance with the approved “Oil Discharge Monitoring and Control Systems Operation Manual”.

The ODME shall be calibrated in accordance with the manufacturer's recommendations as necessary to conform to manufacturer’s specifications, but in no case shall the interval between calibrations exceed 5 years. The ODME shall be self-tested before each use. A test according to the manufacturer’s manual is to be carried out at intervals not exceeding one month. Printed records from the monitoring equipment must be retained on board for inspection by surveyors.


Number of personnel on duty


More than two crew members (at least one engineer) shall be on duty to conduct the oil transfer operation.Each crewmember engaging in the oil transfer operation shall familiarize himself with the line diagram of the piping, valves, tanks and etc.


Chief engineer


Chief engineer shall inspect each equipment and confirm them normal condition and give adequate instructions to the person in charge. The person in charge shall aid the chief engineer and operate valves and check ullage.

Engine hands

Engine hands shall engage in oil transfer operation under the command of chief engineer and the person in charge.


Procedures for tending the vessel’s mooring


The person in charge of oil transfer shall assure that the vessel is securely moored and the moorings are being tended as necessary through consultation with the deck officer on duty. Each deckhand on duty shall watch ship mooring and report to officer on duty and operate the mooring winch, if necessary.

Operations at SBM, CBM / MBM and Tandem Moorings (F(P)SO’s)

Environmental and operating conditions will vary from terminal to terminal and working practices are developed accordingly. When operating at a SBM, CBM or a terminal utilising tandem mooring the terminals operational requirements shall be carefully reviewed and strictly complied with. Any abnormal condition shall be immediately reported to the Loading / Mooring Master as appropriate.

Environmental conditions – wind / sea / swell conditions and currents / tidal streams (as appropriate) shall be monitored throughout and appropriate actions taken as agreed with the terminal in the event of unexpected changes or operating conditions deterorating to close to operating limits. Weather forecasts shall be obtained from all available sources. In all cases the hose string shall be carefully monitored for product leakage. If the terminal hoses / lines are to be flushed with seawater on completion of operations this should be properly addressed.

Procedures for operation the emergency shutdown


When charging fuel oil from shore facility or barge, the emergency shutdown must be provided by the transferring facility. When transferring fuel oil by ship’s pump, engineer in charge shall operate the emergency shutdown button.


Procedures for topping off tanks

When topping off tanks, engineer in charge shall check ullage continuously and request the shore personnel to reduce the loading rate if necessary to avoid the possibility of oil spill.


Communications during oil transfer operation


Chief engineer shall discuss with shore personnel about communications during transfer operation. Communications require that continuous two-way voice communications be possible at all times, ex. walkie-talkie.


Procedures for closing all valves used during oil transfer operation


Chief engineer shall ensure that all valves used during the oil transfer operation are closed after completion of the transfer.


Procedures for closing and opening the vessel’s openings


i) Hatches

ii) Ullage openings

iii) Sounding pipes

No person shall open the abovementioned openings without permission of the chief engineer.


Procedures for reporting oil discharge into the water

In the case of an oil spill, Master shall report to the terminal and the undermentioned

government agency immediately.

The National Response Center(NRC)

Washington,D.C.

Tel.(800)424-8802(24)

Coast GuardGovernment Official

If directly reporting to the NRC is not practicable, reports may be made to the Coast Guard or Government Officials for the geographic area where the discharge occurred.

Contents of Reporting

i) Date and time of discharge

ii) Date and time of reporting

iii) Ship’s name

iv) Company’s name

Where the discharge occurred

i) Kind of oil

ii) Quantity of discharge

iii) Weather

iv) Tide and current

v) Sea condition

vi) Cause of incident

The above facts shall be entered in the Log Book and the Oil Record Book.




Related articles

Ships bunkering guideline- planning, preparation, safety checks & confirmation

Ship to Ship transfer - operational guideline for oil tankers

Controlling oil pollution- emergency measures for ships

Countermeasures against oil spillage onboard

How to report in case of an oil spillage onboard

Bunkering arrangement and safety factors onboard

Bunkering safe procedure and detail guideline for ships

Operational guideline during bunkering

How to keep bunkering record ?

Precautions prior transferring fuel oil into storage tanks






Related articles:

Basic procedure for pumproom management

Ship to ship transferring oil Basic procedure and guideline

Oil pollution control Oil tanker safety guideline

Oil pollution countermeasures Oil tanker safety guideline

Oil cargo loading Preparation and guideline

Oil spillage prevention Oil tanker safety guideline

Disaster prevention in oil tanker Procedure and guideline

Acceptance / rejection of fuel in a quality dispute

Operational guideline during bunkering

Bunker fuel sulfer limit of 3.50 % - Fuel Oil Regulations Frequently asked questions

Ships bunkering guideline- planning, preparation, safety checks & confirmation

Bunkering arrangement and safety factors onboard

Bunkering safe procedure and detail guideline for ships

How to keep bunkering record ?

Precautions prior transferring fuel oil into storage tanks

Treatment of waste oil and oily bilge

Bulk liquid cargo handling - Ship to shore safety checklist

Procedure for oil tankers and how to maintain records

Acceptance or rejection of fuel oil

Heating of fuel oil storage tank

Fuel oil viscosity control

Ships bunkering guideline- planning, preparation, safety checks & confirmation

Tanker vessel safety guideline - inert gas system

Tanker vessel safety guideline - gas freeing procedure

Precautions prior entering freezing zone - Check items in oil tankers operation

Tanker vessel safety guideline Check items in oil tankers operation

Tanker vessel safety guideline - how to prevent oil spillage

Tanker vessel safety guideline - tank cleaning procedures

How to ensure safe working atmosphere onboard?





Related Information

General guidance for oil tankers

Tanker equipment and machinery

Pumproom procedure

Pumproom inspection for tankers

Safe stability guideline for oil tankers Learn basic procedure

Treatment for waste oil or oily bilges

Oil pollution prevention method

General precautions for tankers

Tanker equipment and machinery

General guidance for oil tankers

Crude oil washing for tankers




Other info pages !

Ships Charterparties Related terms & guideline
Stevedores injury How to prevent injury onboard
Environmental issues How to prevent marine pollution
Cargo & Ballast Handling Safety Guideline
Reefer cargo handling Troubleshoot and countermeasures
DG cargo handling Procedures & Guidelines
Safety in engine room Standard procedures
Questions from user and feedback Read our knowledgebase
Home page




ShipsBusiness.com is merely an informational site about various aspects of ships operation,maintenance procedure, prevention of pollution and many safety guideline. The procedures explained here are only indicative, not exhaustive in nature and one must always be guided by practices of good seamanship.

User feedback is important to update our database. For any comment or suggestions please Contact us
Site Use and Privacy - Read our privacy policy and site use information.
//Home //Terms and conditions of use

Copyright © 2015 www.shipsbusiness.com All rights reserved.