In our previous article, we explain the difference between weathertight doors and watertight doors. We also showed pictures of both types of doors and their locations.
On this articles, we will like to discuss the proper ways to carry out weathertight and watertight doors maintenance. By now, I strongly believe you understand the basic purposes and/or functions of these doors.
But if NO, let me use this opportunity to enlighten you the basic functions. Weathertight doors are those fitted above the free-board structure of the main deck of a ship. They also prevent or maintain events such as Water tightness, Fire integrity, and Security gate of the ship. As per SOLAS requirements, the thickness and strength have to be equal to the vessel bulkhead (wall). The opening door opens manually with the help of a knob.
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Unlike weathertight door, onboard ships are also provided with watertight doors, which prevent the flood from spreading to other compartments by maintaining proper sealing and strong enough to withstand water force. This type of door normally open with the help of the hydraulic mechanism, which operates it towards the direction (vertically end to end or horizontally end to end) designed for it to move.
Watertight doors can be found in vessel compartments below the main deck eg Shaft tunnels, Engine room, and all accesses manholes or hatches leading to cargo holds and/or tanks, etc.
Having said that, lets now take a look at how to properly maintain them, in other to serve its purposes.
How to maintain weathertight and watertight doors?
Since this two types of doors almost serve same purposes, the simple way to maintain them is to make sure all mechanisms are inspected periodically to verify that there are no improper penetrations (check sealing gaskets), unprotected openings, and smooth running of knobs or bearings attached to them.
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Also, the door must regularly check and clear the corrected area and surfaces. Sometimes the gaskets may be too hard to compress to the normal closure, it’s important to change as required. This will enable proper closing and sealing.
SOLAS regulation about watertight and weathertight doors
During the IMO sub-committee session 16-20 about ship design, which was held in February 2015, the topic as published in IMO official website stated the plans in which shipbuilder most follow in terms of watertight doors positioning. This includes but not limited to the determination of the impact of opening, technical standard, Illustration of application of the flowability assessment during an emergency, etc.
Note, all class surveys, always check these doors functionality. In case its found faulty or improper up keeping, it can lead to declining of the hull certificate.
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