Outer Continental Shelf Units-Fire and Explosion Analyses, 25139-25141 [2014-10010]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 79, No. 85 / Friday, May 2, 2014 / Notices required to be closed pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 552b(c)(1)(A). The second agenda item, the discussion of potential NSTAC study topics, will address areas of critical cybersecurity vulnerabilities and priorities for Government. Government officials will share data with NSTAC members on initiatives, assessments, and future security requirements. The data to be shared includes specific vulnerabilities within cyberspace that affect the Nation’s communications and information technology infrastructures and proposed mitigation strategies. Disclosure of this information to the public would provide criminals with an incentive to focus on these vulnerabilities to increase attacks on our cyber and communications networks. Therefore, this portion of the meeting is likely to significantly frustrate implementation of proposed DHS actions and is required to be closed pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 552b(c)(9)(B). Dated: April 25, 2014. Helen Jackson, Designated Federal Officer for the NSTAC. [FR Doc. 2014–10024 Filed 5–1–14; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE P DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY Coast Guard [USCG–2013–0316] Outer Continental Shelf Units—Fire and Explosion Analyses Coast Guard, DHS. Notice of recommended interim voluntary guidelines. AGENCY: ACTION: As part of its continuing response to the explosion, fire and sinking of the mobile offshore drilling unit (MODU) DEEPWATER HORIZON in the Gulf of Mexico on April 20, 2010, the Coast Guard is providing recommended interim voluntary guidelines concerning fire and explosion analyses for MODUs and manned fixed and floating offshore facilities engaged in activities on the U.S. Outer Continental Shelf (OCS). DATES: The recommended voluntary guidelines in this notice are effective May 2, 2014. Documents mentioned as being available in the docket are part of docket USCG–2013–0316 and are available for inspection or copying at the Docket Management Facility (M–30), U.S. Department of Transportation, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12–140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with NOTICES SUMMARY: VerDate Mar<15>2010 00:23 May 02, 2014 Jkt 232001 Washington, DC 20590, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. You may also find this docket on the Internet by going to http://www.regulations.gov, inserting USCG–2013–0316 in the ‘‘Keyword’’ box, and then clicking ‘‘Search.’’ FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: If you have questions on this notice, call or email LCDR John H. Miller, U.S. Coast Guard, Office of Design and Engineering Standards, Lifesaving and Fire Safety Division (CG–ENG–4), telephone (202) 372–1372, email John.H.Miller@uscg.mil. Background The ‘‘Report of Investigation into the Circumstances Surrounding the Explosion, Fire, Sinking and Loss of Eleven Crew Members Aboard the Mobile Offshore Drilling Unit (MODU) DEEPWATER HORIZON in the Gulf of Mexico, April 20–22, 2010,’’ (hereinafter referred to as ‘‘Report’’), and related Commandant’s Final Action Memo, dated September 9, 2011, contain a number of recommendations for OCS safety improvements that are presently being evaluated for further regulatory action. (These documents may be found in the docket for this action, as indicated under ADDRESSES). Recommendations 1D, 1E, 2B, 2C, 2E, and 3A in the Report urged the Coast Guard to evaluate the need for fire and explosion risk analyses to ensure an adequate level of protection is provided for accommodation spaces, escape paths, embarkation stations, and structures housing vital safety equipment from drill floor and production area events. The Report highlighted the following considerations as areas not specifically addressed by current regulations: • Minimum values are needed for explosion design loads for use in calculating the required blast resistance of structures; • Explosion risk analysis of the design and layout of each facility should be performed to identify high risk situations; • H–60 rated fire boundaries between the drilling area and adjacent accommodation spaces and spaces housing vital safety equipment may be necessary dependent on the arrangement of the facility; • Uniform guidelines for performing engineering evaluations to ensure adequate protection of bulkheads and decks separating hazardous areas from adjacent structures and escape routes for likely drill floor fire scenarios are necessary; • Performance-based fire risk analysis should be used to supplement the PO 00000 Frm 00047 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 25139 prescriptive requirements in the MODU Code; such analysis should use defined heat flux loads to calculate necessary levels of protection for structures, equipment, and vital systems that could be affected by fires on the drill floor; • Maximum allowable radiant heat exposure limits for personnel at the muster stations and lifesaving appliance launching stations in anticipated evacuation scenarios should be implemented. To implement these recommendations, a future Coast Guard rulemaking will address fire and explosion risk analyses for MODUs and manned fixed and floating offshore facilities engaged in OCS activities. Comments will be invited in connection with that rulemaking. Currently, there is no requirement in the current OCS regulations, in Title 33 of the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), that requires a fire and explosion analysis that would implement the recommendations from the Report. Furthermore, while Section 9 of the 2009 IMO MODU Code contains some recommendations on the parameters of fire and explosion risk analysis, we believe that these recommendations are not sufficiently specific to adequately and consistently address these recommendations from the Report on their own. We believe that the recommendations from the 2009 IMO MODU Code are insufficiently specific for several reasons. Section 9.3.1 of the 2009 MODU Code provides, ‘‘In general, accommodation spaces, service spaces and control stations should not be located adjacent to hazardous areas. However, where this is not practicable, an engineering evaluation should be performed to ensure that the level of fire protection and blast resistance of the bulkheads and decks separating these spaces from the hazardous areas are adequate for the likely hazard.’’ This requirement is not specific enough to consistently ensure the protection of safety-critical spaces and elements aboard MODUs and manned fixed and floating offshore facilities engaged in OCS activities, and needs to be supported by guidance to better define what the ‘‘engineering evaluation’’ should include and what performance criteria should be met to ensure ‘‘adequate protection’’ is provided. Safety-critical spaces and elements refers to any accommodation or work area, equipment, system, device, or material, the failure, destruction, or release of which could directly or indirectly endanger the survivability of the facility and the personnel onboard. These safety-critical spaces and E:\FR\FM\02MYN1.SGM 02MYN1 25140 Federal Register / Vol. 79, No. 85 / Friday, May 2, 2014 / Notices elements can include, but not be limited to, control stations, accommodation areas, vital safety equipment, escape routes and survival craft launching areas, and other equipment with escalation potential (e.g., fuel storage). Survivability refers to the event threshold determined by the company for the purposes of fire and explosion. This normally includes the specification of a sufficient period of time to maintain the habitability of safety-critical spaces and escape routes, temporary refuge, and muster areas to allow for emergency response and boarding of survival craft and subsequent evacuation of the facility. Additionally, Section 9.4.5 of the 2009 MODU Code also requires that, ‘‘Consideration should be given by the Administration to the siting of superstructures and deckhouses such that in the event of fire at the drill floor at least one escape route to the embarkation position and survival craft is protected against radiation effects of that fire as far as practicable.’’ This requirement is not specific enough to consistently ensure the protection of escape routes aboard MODUs and manned fixed and floating offshore facilities engaged in OCS activities, and needs to be supported by guidance to better define what level of ‘‘radiation effects’’ to personnel and safety equipment is acceptable. The Coast Guard believes the fire and explosion analysis guidelines set forth below are needed to uniformly implement the recommendations in paragraphs 9.3.1 and 9.4.5 of 2009 MODU Code, and address recommendations 1D, 1E, 2B, 2C, 2E, and 3A of the Report. It is the Coast Guard’s belief that following these recommendations would yield significant safety improvements. These guidelines were developed based on industry standards, technical expert advice, and fire protection engineering references. These guidelines are intended for use in the design phase of new facility construction; however, they may be useful in assessing and increasing the safety of existing facilities. Interim Voluntary Guidance mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with NOTICES (a) Introduction As an interim measure pending a Coast Guard future rulemaking, owners/ operators of MODUs and manned fixed and floating offshore facilities operating on the U.S. OCS are urged to consider voluntary compliance with the guidelines laid out below, to the extent appropriate and practicable. VerDate Mar<15>2010 00:23 May 02, 2014 Jkt 232001 The intent of the recommendations set forth below is to provide a consistent approach for adequate protection of personnel and safety-critical spaces and elements located on MODUS and manned fixed and floating offshore facilities against potential fire and explosion events following a catastrophic failure such as loss of well control. This approach should consider all facility operating modes including startup, maintenance periods, crew turnover, etc. (b) Recommendations (1) Engineering Evaluation The engineering evaluation of fire and blast loads in the design of offshore facilities should follow an established and widely accepted approach, normally based on the fire and explosion risk of hydrocarbon fuel sources. An engineering evaluation should identify hazards and the potential damage of major accident events. This evaluation should consist of a methodology that may include the following: hazard identification, consequence evaluation, adequacy of control and mitigation measures, and final risk assessment. The evaluation should be completed by a Registered Professional Fire Protection Engineer with experience in fire and explosion analysis, or by a recognized class society (under 46 CFR part 8) with similar equivalent experience. This evaluation should include establishment of accepted performance criteria to demonstrate that appropriate mitigating measures have been implemented to ensure survivability of the facility and personnel. The Coast Guard recommends the use of American Petroleum Institute (API) Recommended Practice (RP) 2FB for conducting an engineering evaluation. We note that there are other standards available that can be used for the engineering evaluation. We chose API RP 2FB because it contains thorough coverage of the elements which are important to an engineering evaluation and because the Coast Guard actively participates in the API committee process. We do note that there are alternative approaches that have been widely accepted by the oil and gas industry meeting the intent of this recommendation. (2) Explosion Protection Maximum allowable values for explosion design loads should be determined based on accepted industry standards and used to calculate the required blast resistance of structures for each particular arrangement. PO 00000 Frm 00048 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 Explosion design load means a nominal, peak overpressure that has been defined in industry standards based on a limited data set for a number of platform concept types (nominal values are determined from acquired experience or physical conditions). In cases where vulnerabilities are noted, facility arrangements should be modified or additional protective measures provided. We recommend use of the unmodified nominal explosion overpressures by facility type and load modifiers listed in API RP 2FB, Tables C.6.3.1–1 and C.6.3.2–1, where appropriate. As described in the guide, load modifiers should be used to account for the higher or lower pressures that may be associated with specific facility arrangements or operations. We do note that there are alternative explosion design loads that have been widely accepted by the oil and gas industry meeting the intent of this recommendation. (3) Fire Protection The radiant heat flux produced by particular hazards should be prescribed and calculations completed to assess the effects on safety critical spaces and elements. Radiant heat flux means the rate of heat transfer per unit area perpendicular to the direction of heat flow; normally expressed in kilowatts per meters squared (kW/m2) or British Thermal Units per second foot squared (Btu/(s*ft2)). Radiant heat flux is a measure of the potential for injury, damage or fire spread (e.g., most common combustibles ignite when exposed to a radiant heat flux of 0.9–1.8 Btu/(s*ft2) or 10–20 kW/m2). The radiant heat flux from typical drill floor fire sources should be approximated from the following: (i) As specified in API RP 2FB, jet fires may give rise to radiant heat flux levels on the order of 300 KW/m2 in open conditions and up to 400 KW/m2 in confined areas. Jet fire refers to a high-pressure release of any flammable fluid or gases in a solution that forms a jet which is ignited, and in which the flame burns back against the flow towards the release point; (ii) As specified in API RP 2FB, pool fires may give rise to lower radiant heat flux levels on the order of 100–160 KW/ m2. Pool fire refers to a body of fuel that is confined by physical boundaries (e.g., obstructions on the floor will limit a fuel release to a smaller area than the potential unconfined spill area). Where the safety-critical spaces and elements are exposed to a radiant heat flux up to 100 KW/m2, a passive structural fire protection equivalent E:\FR\FM\02MYN1.SGM 02MYN1 Federal Register / Vol. 79, No. 85 / Friday, May 2, 2014 / Notices mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with NOTICES rating of A–60 should generally be considered sufficient for the surface facing the source of the radiant heat flux. For radiant heat flux levels 100 KW/m2 and above, H–60 rated protection should be considered as a minimum. In either case, the protection should continue on the adjacent sides of such structures for a minimum distance of 10 feet (3 meters) from the surface facing the source of the radiant heat flux (SOLAS II–2/9.2.4.2.5). This overlapping of protection on adjacent areas is necessary to prevent the radiant heat from ‘‘wrapping around’’ to expose an inadequately protected area. The Coast Guard recommends use of the following references for calculating the radiant heat flux at a target from a fire source (i.e., pool or jet fire). (i) The SFPE Handbook of Fire Protection Engineering, Fourth Edition (Section 3, Chapter 10); (iii) API Recommended Practice 2FB. We do note that there are alternative baseline radiant heat flux levels and calculations that have been recognized by the oil and gas industry meeting the intent of this recommendation. (4) Heat Exposure The maximum radiant heat exposure to personnel should be evaluated at the assembly/muster stations and survival craft launching stations as well as along the normal escape routes from the accommodation and service areas to those areas. The maximum allowable radiant heat flux exposure for personnel at the muster stations and survival craft launching stations should be low enough to prevent injury when exposed for the period of time needed to embark and launch the survival craft (normally around 2.5 KW/m2 for approximately thirty minutes on bare skin). The Coast Guard recommends use of the following references for calculating the radiant heat flux exposure to a target and the limits on personnel exposure: (i) The SFPE Handbook of Fire Protection Engineering, Fourth Edition (Section 2, Chapter 6; Section 3, Chapter 10); (ii) Fire Protection Handbook, Twentieth Edition (Section 6, Chapter 2); (iii) API Recommended Practice 2FB. We do note that there are alternative methods for calculating radiant heat flux exposure to personnel and exposure limits which meet the intent of this recommendation. (5) Mitigation Where the explosion design load, radiant heat flux and radiant heat exposure values calculated for the VerDate Mar<15>2010 00:23 May 02, 2014 Jkt 232001 facility exceed the recommended performance standard of the equipment in place, mitigation measures, such as venting, increased structural strength of blast-walls, bulkheads and decks, passive fire protection, re-arrangement and shifting of structures, or other viable and analyzed mitigation measures should be incorporated. Authority; Disclaimer This document is issued under the authority of 5 U.S.C. 552(a), 43 U.S.C. 1331, et seq., and 33 CFR 1.05–1. The guidance contained in this notice is not a substitute for applicable legal requirements or current Coast Guard and Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement regulations, nor is it itself a regulation. It is not intended to nor does it impose legally binding requirements on any party. It represents the Coast Guard’s current thinking on this topic and may assist industry, mariners, the general public, and the Coast Guard, as well as other Federal and State regulators, in instituting lessons learned from the Report. Dated: April 28, 2014. J.G. Lantz, Director of Commercial Regulations and Standards, U.S. Coast Guard. [FR Doc. 2014–10010 Filed 5–1–14; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 9110–04–P DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services [CIS No. 2542–14; DHS Docket No. USCIS– 2014–0001] RIN 1615–ZB25 Extension of the Re-registration Period for Haiti Temporary Protected Status U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Department of Homeland Security. ACTION: Notice; Extension of reregistration period. AGENCY: On March 3, 2014, the Secretary of Homeland Security (Secretary) extended the designation of Haiti for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for a period of 18 months by notice in the Federal Register. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) established a 60-day reregistration period from March 3, 2014 through May 2, 2014. DHS is extending the re-registration period through July 22, 2014 through this Notice, to maximize re-registration opportunities for those eligible to re-register. SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00049 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 25141 DHS extended Haiti TPS on March 3, 2014. The re-registration period that was to expire on May 2, 2014, will be extended with a new reregistration filing deadline of July 22, 2014. DATES: FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: • For further information on TPS, including guidance on the application process and additional information on eligibility, please visit the USCIS TPS Web page at http://www.uscis.gov/tps. You can find specific information about the extension of the TPS designation for Haiti and the extension of the reregistration period by selecting ‘‘TPS Designated Country: Haiti’’ from the menu on the left of the TPS Web page. On the Haiti TPS Web page, there is a link to the Federal Register notice at 79 FR 11808 (March 3, 2014) that provides detailed information and procedures to re-register for Haiti TPS. • You can also contact the TPS Operations Program Manager at the Family and Status Branch, Service Center Operations Directorate, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Department of Homeland Security, Mail Stop 2060, Washington, DC 20529– 2060; or by phone at (202) 272–1533 (this is not a toll-free number). Note: The phone number provided here is solely for questions regarding this TPS notice. It is not for individual case status updates. • Applicants seeking information about the status of their individual cases can check Case Status Online, available at the USCIS Web site at http:// www.uscis.gov, or call the USCIS National Customer Service Center at 800–375–5283 (TTY for the hearing impaired is at 800–767–1833). Service is available in English and Spanish only. • Further information will also be available at local USCIS offices upon publication of this Notice. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: When did the Secretary extend the TPS designation for Haiti? On March 3, 2014, the Secretary extended the TPS designation for Haiti for a period of 18 months by notice in the Federal Register. See 79 FR 11808. The extension is effective from July 23, 2014 through January 22, 2016. Why is the Secretary extending the reregistration period for Haitian TPS beneficiaries? DHS is extending the re-registration period through July 22, 2014 in order to maximize re-registration opportunities for those eligible to do so. As of April 20, 2014, USCIS had received a low proportion of the expected number of E:\FR\FM\02MYN1.SGM 02MYN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 79, Number 85 (Friday, May 2, 2014)]
[Notices]
[Pages 25139-25141]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2014-10010]


-----------------------------------------------------------------------

DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY

Coast Guard

[USCG-2013-0316]


Outer Continental Shelf Units--Fire and Explosion Analyses

AGENCY: Coast Guard, DHS.

ACTION: Notice of recommended interim voluntary guidelines.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: As part of its continuing response to the explosion, fire and 
sinking of the mobile offshore drilling unit (MODU) DEEPWATER HORIZON 
in the Gulf of Mexico on April 20, 2010, the Coast Guard is providing 
recommended interim voluntary guidelines concerning fire and explosion 
analyses for MODUs and manned fixed and floating offshore facilities 
engaged in activities on the U.S. Outer Continental Shelf (OCS).

DATES: The recommended voluntary guidelines in this notice are 
effective May 2, 2014.
    Documents mentioned as being available in the docket are part of 
docket USCG-2013-0316 and are available for inspection or copying at 
the Docket Management Facility (M-30), U.S. Department of 
Transportation, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, 1200 New 
Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., 
Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. You may also find this 
docket on the Internet by going to http://www.regulations.gov, 
inserting USCG-2013-0316 in the ``Keyword'' box, and then clicking 
``Search.''

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: If you have questions on this notice, 
call or email LCDR John H. Miller, U.S. Coast Guard, Office of Design 
and Engineering Standards, Lifesaving and Fire Safety Division (CG-ENG-
4), telephone (202) 372-1372, email John.H.Miller@uscg.mil.

Background

    The ``Report of Investigation into the Circumstances Surrounding 
the Explosion, Fire, Sinking and Loss of Eleven Crew Members Aboard the 
Mobile Offshore Drilling Unit (MODU) DEEPWATER HORIZON in the Gulf of 
Mexico, April 20-22, 2010,'' (hereinafter referred to as ``Report''), 
and related Commandant's Final Action Memo, dated September 9, 2011, 
contain a number of recommendations for OCS safety improvements that 
are presently being evaluated for further regulatory action. (These 
documents may be found in the docket for this action, as indicated 
under ADDRESSES).
    Recommendations 1D, 1E, 2B, 2C, 2E, and 3A in the Report urged the 
Coast Guard to evaluate the need for fire and explosion risk analyses 
to ensure an adequate level of protection is provided for accommodation 
spaces, escape paths, embarkation stations, and structures housing 
vital safety equipment from drill floor and production area events. The 
Report highlighted the following considerations as areas not 
specifically addressed by current regulations:
     Minimum values are needed for explosion design loads for 
use in calculating the required blast resistance of structures;
     Explosion risk analysis of the design and layout of each 
facility should be performed to identify high risk situations;
     H-60 rated fire boundaries between the drilling area and 
adjacent accommodation spaces and spaces housing vital safety equipment 
may be necessary dependent on the arrangement of the facility;
     Uniform guidelines for performing engineering evaluations 
to ensure adequate protection of bulkheads and decks separating 
hazardous areas from adjacent structures and escape routes for likely 
drill floor fire scenarios are necessary;
     Performance-based fire risk analysis should be used to 
supplement the prescriptive requirements in the MODU Code; such 
analysis should use defined heat flux loads to calculate necessary 
levels of protection for structures, equipment, and vital systems that 
could be affected by fires on the drill floor;
     Maximum allowable radiant heat exposure limits for 
personnel at the muster stations and lifesaving appliance launching 
stations in anticipated evacuation scenarios should be implemented.
    To implement these recommendations, a future Coast Guard rulemaking 
will address fire and explosion risk analyses for MODUs and manned 
fixed and floating offshore facilities engaged in OCS activities. 
Comments will be invited in connection with that rulemaking.
    Currently, there is no requirement in the current OCS regulations, 
in Title 33 of the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), that requires a 
fire and explosion analysis that would implement the recommendations 
from the Report. Furthermore, while Section 9 of the 2009 IMO MODU Code 
contains some recommendations on the parameters of fire and explosion 
risk analysis, we believe that these recommendations are not 
sufficiently specific to adequately and consistently address these 
recommendations from the Report on their own.
    We believe that the recommendations from the 2009 IMO MODU Code are 
insufficiently specific for several reasons. Section 9.3.1 of the 2009 
MODU Code provides, ``In general, accommodation spaces, service spaces 
and control stations should not be located adjacent to hazardous areas. 
However, where this is not practicable, an engineering evaluation 
should be performed to ensure that the level of fire protection and 
blast resistance of the bulkheads and decks separating these spaces 
from the hazardous areas are adequate for the likely hazard.'' This 
requirement is not specific enough to consistently ensure the 
protection of safety-critical spaces and elements aboard MODUs and 
manned fixed and floating offshore facilities engaged in OCS 
activities, and needs to be supported by guidance to better define what 
the ``engineering evaluation'' should include and what performance 
criteria should be met to ensure ``adequate protection'' is provided. 
Safety-critical spaces and elements refers to any accommodation or work 
area, equipment, system, device, or material, the failure, destruction, 
or release of which could directly or indirectly endanger the 
survivability of the facility and the personnel onboard. These safety-
critical spaces and

[[Page 25140]]

elements can include, but not be limited to, control stations, 
accommodation areas, vital safety equipment, escape routes and survival 
craft launching areas, and other equipment with escalation potential 
(e.g., fuel storage). Survivability refers to the event threshold 
determined by the company for the purposes of fire and explosion. This 
normally includes the specification of a sufficient period of time to 
maintain the habitability of safety-critical spaces and escape routes, 
temporary refuge, and muster areas to allow for emergency response and 
boarding of survival craft and subsequent evacuation of the facility.
    Additionally, Section 9.4.5 of the 2009 MODU Code also requires 
that, ``Consideration should be given by the Administration to the 
siting of superstructures and deckhouses such that in the event of fire 
at the drill floor at least one escape route to the embarkation 
position and survival craft is protected against radiation effects of 
that fire as far as practicable.'' This requirement is not specific 
enough to consistently ensure the protection of escape routes aboard 
MODUs and manned fixed and floating offshore facilities engaged in OCS 
activities, and needs to be supported by guidance to better define what 
level of ``radiation effects'' to personnel and safety equipment is 
acceptable.
    The Coast Guard believes the fire and explosion analysis guidelines 
set forth below are needed to uniformly implement the recommendations 
in paragraphs 9.3.1 and 9.4.5 of 2009 MODU Code, and address 
recommendations 1D, 1E, 2B, 2C, 2E, and 3A of the Report. It is the 
Coast Guard's belief that following these recommendations would yield 
significant safety improvements. These guidelines were developed based 
on industry standards, technical expert advice, and fire protection 
engineering references. These guidelines are intended for use in the 
design phase of new facility construction; however, they may be useful 
in assessing and increasing the safety of existing facilities.

Interim Voluntary Guidance

(a) Introduction

    As an interim measure pending a Coast Guard future rulemaking, 
owners/operators of MODUs and manned fixed and floating offshore 
facilities operating on the U.S. OCS are urged to consider voluntary 
compliance with the guidelines laid out below, to the extent 
appropriate and practicable.
    The intent of the recommendations set forth below is to provide a 
consistent approach for adequate protection of personnel and safety-
critical spaces and elements located on MODUS and manned fixed and 
floating offshore facilities against potential fire and explosion 
events following a catastrophic failure such as loss of well control. 
This approach should consider all facility operating modes including 
startup, maintenance periods, crew turnover, etc.

(b) Recommendations

(1) Engineering Evaluation
    The engineering evaluation of fire and blast loads in the design of 
offshore facilities should follow an established and widely accepted 
approach, normally based on the fire and explosion risk of hydrocarbon 
fuel sources. An engineering evaluation should identify hazards and the 
potential damage of major accident events. This evaluation should 
consist of a methodology that may include the following: hazard 
identification, consequence evaluation, adequacy of control and 
mitigation measures, and final risk assessment. The evaluation should 
be completed by a Registered Professional Fire Protection Engineer with 
experience in fire and explosion analysis, or by a recognized class 
society (under 46 CFR part 8) with similar equivalent experience.
    This evaluation should include establishment of accepted 
performance criteria to demonstrate that appropriate mitigating 
measures have been implemented to ensure survivability of the facility 
and personnel.
    The Coast Guard recommends the use of American Petroleum Institute 
(API) Recommended Practice (RP) 2FB for conducting an engineering 
evaluation.
    We note that there are other standards available that can be used 
for the engineering evaluation. We chose API RP 2FB because it contains 
thorough coverage of the elements which are important to an engineering 
evaluation and because the Coast Guard actively participates in the API 
committee process. We do note that there are alternative approaches 
that have been widely accepted by the oil and gas industry meeting the 
intent of this recommendation.
(2) Explosion Protection
    Maximum allowable values for explosion design loads should be 
determined based on accepted industry standards and used to calculate 
the required blast resistance of structures for each particular 
arrangement. Explosion design load means a nominal, peak overpressure 
that has been defined in industry standards based on a limited data set 
for a number of platform concept types (nominal values are determined 
from acquired experience or physical conditions). In cases where 
vulnerabilities are noted, facility arrangements should be modified or 
additional protective measures provided.
    We recommend use of the unmodified nominal explosion overpressures 
by facility type and load modifiers listed in API RP 2FB, Tables 
C.6.3.1-1 and C.6.3.2-1, where appropriate. As described in the guide, 
load modifiers should be used to account for the higher or lower 
pressures that may be associated with specific facility arrangements or 
operations.
    We do note that there are alternative explosion design loads that 
have been widely accepted by the oil and gas industry meeting the 
intent of this recommendation.
(3) Fire Protection
    The radiant heat flux produced by particular hazards should be 
prescribed and calculations completed to assess the effects on safety 
critical spaces and elements. Radiant heat flux means the rate of heat 
transfer per unit area perpendicular to the direction of heat flow; 
normally expressed in kilowatts per meters squared (kW/m\2\) or British 
Thermal Units per second foot squared (Btu/(s*ft\2\)). Radiant heat 
flux is a measure of the potential for injury, damage or fire spread 
(e.g., most common combustibles ignite when exposed to a radiant heat 
flux of 0.9-1.8 Btu/(s*ft\2\) or 10-20 kW/m\2\).
    The radiant heat flux from typical drill floor fire sources should 
be approximated from the following:
    (i) As specified in API RP 2FB, jet fires may give rise to radiant 
heat flux levels on the order of 300 KW/m\2\ in open conditions and up 
to 400 KW/m\2\ in confined areas. Jet fire refers to a high-pressure 
release of any flammable fluid or gases in a solution that forms a jet 
which is ignited, and in which the flame burns back against the flow 
towards the release point;
    (ii) As specified in API RP 2FB, pool fires may give rise to lower 
radiant heat flux levels on the order of 100-160 KW/m\2\. Pool fire 
refers to a body of fuel that is confined by physical boundaries (e.g., 
obstructions on the floor will limit a fuel release to a smaller area 
than the potential unconfined spill area).
    Where the safety-critical spaces and elements are exposed to a 
radiant heat flux up to 100 KW/m\2\, a passive structural fire 
protection equivalent

[[Page 25141]]

rating of A-60 should generally be considered sufficient for the 
surface facing the source of the radiant heat flux. For radiant heat 
flux levels 100 KW/m\2\ and above, H-60 rated protection should be 
considered as a minimum. In either case, the protection should continue 
on the adjacent sides of such structures for a minimum distance of 10 
feet (3 meters) from the surface facing the source of the radiant heat 
flux (SOLAS II-2/9.2.4.2.5). This overlapping of protection on adjacent 
areas is necessary to prevent the radiant heat from ``wrapping around'' 
to expose an inadequately protected area.
    The Coast Guard recommends use of the following references for 
calculating the radiant heat flux at a target from a fire source (i.e., 
pool or jet fire).
    (i) The SFPE Handbook of Fire Protection Engineering, Fourth 
Edition (Section 3, Chapter 10);
    (iii) API Recommended Practice 2FB.
    We do note that there are alternative baseline radiant heat flux 
levels and calculations that have been recognized by the oil and gas 
industry meeting the intent of this recommendation.
(4) Heat Exposure
    The maximum radiant heat exposure to personnel should be evaluated 
at the assembly/muster stations and survival craft launching stations 
as well as along the normal escape routes from the accommodation and 
service areas to those areas.
    The maximum allowable radiant heat flux exposure for personnel at 
the muster stations and survival craft launching stations should be low 
enough to prevent injury when exposed for the period of time needed to 
embark and launch the survival craft (normally around 2.5 KW/m\2\ for 
approximately thirty minutes on bare skin).
    The Coast Guard recommends use of the following references for 
calculating the radiant heat flux exposure to a target and the limits 
on personnel exposure:
    (i) The SFPE Handbook of Fire Protection Engineering, Fourth 
Edition (Section 2, Chapter 6; Section 3, Chapter 10);
    (ii) Fire Protection Handbook, Twentieth Edition (Section 6, 
Chapter 2);
    (iii) API Recommended Practice 2FB.
    We do note that there are alternative methods for calculating 
radiant heat flux exposure to personnel and exposure limits which meet 
the intent of this recommendation.
(5) Mitigation
    Where the explosion design load, radiant heat flux and radiant heat 
exposure values calculated for the facility exceed the recommended 
performance standard of the equipment in place, mitigation measures, 
such as venting, increased structural strength of blast-walls, 
bulkheads and decks, passive fire protection, re-arrangement and 
shifting of structures, or other viable and analyzed mitigation 
measures should be incorporated.

Authority; Disclaimer

    This document is issued under the authority of 5 U.S.C. 552(a), 43 
U.S.C. 1331, et seq., and 33 CFR 1.05-1. The guidance contained in this 
notice is not a substitute for applicable legal requirements or current 
Coast Guard and Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement 
regulations, nor is it itself a regulation. It is not intended to nor 
does it impose legally binding requirements on any party. It represents 
the Coast Guard's current thinking on this topic and may assist 
industry, mariners, the general public, and the Coast Guard, as well as 
other Federal and State regulators, in instituting lessons learned from 
the Report.

    Dated: April 28, 2014.
J.G. Lantz,
Director of Commercial Regulations and Standards, U.S. Coast Guard.
[FR Doc. 2014-10010 Filed 5-1-14; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 9110-04-P