Emergency Response to the Release of Chemical Cargoes at Sea

  • D. Cormack
Conference paper


This paper proposes an approach to the categorisation of chemicals both bulk and packaged, which may be released to the sea, as a basis for decision making at incidents. Three Search and Recovery Categories are proposed for lost packages based on allocation of chemicals according to GESAMP ratings for the marine pollution aspect and according to the IMDG code for hazard to human life. With regard to the release of volatile bulk chemicals the approach depends on calculations of pool spreading and evaporation rates, followed by calculation of atmospheric concentrations at varying downwind distance. Then by reference to fire and explosion concentration limits, and the various measures of hazard to human life, it is proposed to categorise such chemicals for treatment as for crude oil spillage, Category 1, or as requiring additional precautions by operators on scene and the issue of warnings to others at distance from the scene, Category 2. A similar approach to soluble chemicals is proposed and indications given as to how the UK proposes to proceed from here in the elaboration of the categories and the allocation of chemicals to them.


American Petroleum Institute Pollution Hazard Threshold Limit Value Downwind Distance Vapour Cloud 
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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1988

Authors and Affiliations

  • D. Cormack
    • 1
  1. 1.Warren Spring LaboratoryStevenage, HertsUK

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