OPERATIONAL MARINA SAFETY
With pre-season planning underway, a large national marina management company announced that they had acquired the services of a high-tech training firm to develop and oversee their corporate marina safety program. Whether you own one or dozens of marinas across the country, comprehensive operational marinaÂ safety planning is a vital component in your pre-season planning.
Previously, we covered safety programs geared towards boaters and water enthusiasts. Now weâ€™re focusing more on the operational aspects of marina safety.
OSHAÂ (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) is a good start for safety enforcement in the workplace â€“ addressing safety issues required by law. OSHA will provide training and outreach for compliance for marina safety.
Even with a marina safety program in place, will it pass muster? Answer the following questions in various operationalÂ categories to make sure you have all safety measures in place:
- Do your employees know where to find PPG/PPE (Personal Protection Gear/Equipment) to protect against blood borne pathogens?
- Do you provide a map of your marina showing first aid kits, spill kits, life rings, safety/rescue ladders, evacuation routes, and no swimming areas?
- Are your no swimming signs prominently posted?
- Are your marinaâ€™s life rings Type IV as required by the U.S. Coast Guard?
- Do you have signage advocating the use of PFD (Personal Flotation Device)?
- Do you effectively address slippery decks and materials?
- Are Emergency Numbers clearly posted?
- Are you compliant with mandated NEC Standards?
- Are you spot checking for electrical leakage frequently enough?
- How regularly are your power pedestals checked for wear and damage?
- Do you provide appropriate ground fault protection?
- Are you and your employees trained to spot ESD (Electric Shock Drowning)?
- In the event of a fire, do you have a plan for whom, how, and to where boats will be moved?
- Are your employees trained in the use of a fire extinguisher?
- Can your employees recognize the different types of fires and how to put them out?
- Do youÂ have more than one exit route in case of a fire?
- Is the emergency fuel cut-off clearly marked?
- Do you know who is legally responsible for disconnecting in the event of an emergency?
- Do you know the five most common causes of fires at a marina?
- Do you have an active float plan for your customers?
- Do all your employees know where your emergency spill response and first aid kits are located?
- Have you recently practiced a Man Overboard Drill?
- Do you offer your customers a Pre-departure Checklist?
- Do your boaters know the legal requirements for safety equipment?
- Do you and/or your employees perform daily manager walks to mark out safety hazards?
- Have you recently performed safety drills for fires, floods, or inclement weather?
- Do you appropriately implement your PFD policy for children and adults?
- Do you properly address customer-caused safety hazards?
- Is somebody assigned the responsibility for enforcing safety procedure and practices?
- Are you due for your insurance company to do a walk-through with you to identify potential liabilities?
- Do you adequately enact clear walkway policies with your customers and employees?
- Do you have an effective state-of-emergency communications plan for your guests and employees?
- Do you have a lock-out / tag-out policy?
- If emergency response has to be called (fire, ambulance, police), is somebody assigned responsibility?
- Do you have a policy for non-slip deck shoes and eyewear?
- Do you have a golf-cart policy?
- Do youÂ have any company certifications in your training program (i.e., who is allowed to move boats, handle certain equipment, etc.)?
- Is yourÂ repetitiveÂ training program regularly scheduled?
- Do you have an adequate number of monthly fire drills?
- Do you have special training for new hires?
- Do all appropriate individuals have CPR training and defibrillator training?
- Are your employees trained to detect the early signs of heat exhaustion?
- Do youÂ have a policy that determines when equipment needs to be removed for maintenance?
- Do youÂ have your fire extinguishers examined and certified frequently enough?
- Are cracked tiles and splintered wood decking addressed regularly?
- Are trash receptacles emptied and cleaned out routinely?
- What visible checks do you perform on your pump-out station?
- Are outlets for non-potable water posted clearly?
- Are restroom facilities cleaned and maintained routinely?
Feel confident? Not sure? Donâ€™t know where to go?
Without having to acquire the services of a national training service, you can find good sources online like the following:
- The Association of Marina Industries publishes the Marina Operations Manual. Â A summary of contents can be found here.
- The AMI has also released the Best Management Practices for Marina Electrical Safety.
- TheÂ National Water Safety Congress provides free Guidelines for the Safe Operation and Maintenance of Marinas, which can be found on the Army Corps Of Engineers website.
- Marina Dock Age also has safety related articles.
- MYMIC offers interactive training for their marina customers. You can try a sample course on their website.
Additional safety articles: