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Published on 15/08/2023

The Crucial Importance of Regular Equipment Servicing for Vessels 

In the intricate maritime world, vessels serve as vital components for the global transportation of goods. Behind the scenes, a multitude of complex equipment and systems work tirelessly to ensure the smooth functioning of these vessels. Among these, regular equipment servicing emerges as a cornerstone of operational efficiency and safety. In this article, we delve into the significance of servicing your vessels’ fixed equipment and systems regularly whilst looking at a real-life case from one of our systems in North America, highlighting the critical consequences of neglecting maintenance.

The Martek Canadian Expedition: a glimpse into the consequences of neglecting regular servicing

One Sunday, one of our engineers was urgently dispatched to Canada to address faults plaguing a gas sampling system aboard a Chemical Tanker. The ship had been detained due to a series of issues, with the gas sampling system malfunctions at the forefront. This case vividly showcases the serious consequences of postponed equipment maintenance and checks and its impact on maritime operations. 
The gas sampling system’s main screen failure was merely the tip of the iceberg. The engineer’s checklist revealed a long list of faults, including the need to clear sample lines, replace failing solenoid valves, service or replace pump diaphragms, replace and calibrate an additional H2S sensor, calibrate the flame sensor, and renew the pneumatic circuit comprising valves and tubing. All of these issues are the result of neglecting regular servicing over a long period of time.  

With not so much of a surprise, as the engineer delved into the vessel’s history, a striking revelation emerged – the last servicing had been conducted in 2019, a staggering four years ago. As a maritime safety solution provider, we did our best to encourage service in the last 4 years; however, despite the multiple attempts to emphasize the importance of consistent maintenance over the years, the ship’s management had approved servicing only when the vessel’s operations were jeopardised, leading to an emergency detention without being able to sail until these issues are rectified.

The Importance of Regular Servicing:

We’ve given you a clear picture of why it’s important to conduct regular service, but just so you don’t fall into the negative habit of neglecting your critical fixed systems checks, here are some key factors to keep in consideration about why you should service your equipment periodically. 

1. Preventive Maintenance: regular servicing ensures early detection and resolution of issues, preventing them from becoming critical problems that can disrupt operations and lead to emergencies. 

2. Enhanced Safety: properly maintained equipment reduces the risk of accidents, ensuring the safety of crew members, cargo, and the environment. 
3. Operational Efficiency: well-maintained equipment operates optimally, minimising downtime and maximising productivity. This will ensure your equipment is running at optimal performance and won’t let you down when you most need it. 
4. Cost Savings: timely servicing prevents unplanned expenses; the need for extensive repairs or replacements, resulting in significant cost savings in the long run.  
5. Regulatory Compliance: regular servicing ensures vessels remain compliant with stringent maritime regulations, preventing potential legal and financial repercussions to ensure you are ready to set sail with peace of mind after every inspection. 
The Chemical Tanker case serves as a stark reminder of the pivotal role that regular equipment servicing plays in the maritime industry. It’s vital to also remember that the consequences mentioned above don’t apply only to Chemical tankers, no matter the vessel you own, neglecting maintenance may endanger the vessel’s operational integrity and jeopardises the safety of crew members, cargo, and the environment. To ensure the safety and efficiency of your maritime operations, it’s crucial that you prioritise regular equipment servicing. This will help you avoid any potential issues and keep everything running smoothly.  

Let’s work together to maintain a secure and reliable maritime business for everyone. Shipowners and operators need to prioritise the well-being of their vessels and crew members through diligent and regular servicing practices. Don’t wait until something goes wrong; schedule your check-up on your Martek fixed equipment today with a Martek trained engineer! Get in touch at [email protected] 

Get More Than Just Servicing: 

We go beyond servicing your systems. Our expert engineers will provide proper maintenance training to your crew, empowering them to handle routine procedures effectively. Additionally, you’ll have access to free 24-hour troubleshooting and remote support, enhancing the reliability and uptime of your equipment. 

Our servicing and training include the following Martek fixed systems: 

For more information on our fixed systems, visit this page.