Scottish builder unveils new range of feed barges with improved safety features

Photo: Gael Force Group

Scottish builder the Gael Force Group has revealed a series of safety features and enhancements on its extended feed barge range, encompassing modernised concrete and steel designs.

Adding to Gael Force’s existing range of 150-tonne to 300-tonne steel barges, and 600-tonne steel barge, are the newly launched range of 400-tonne and 500-tonne steel barge designs, and the company’s concrete barge range now comprising standardised models with 150-tonne, 200-tonne, and 350-tonne feed load capacities.

The barges are designed and built in accordance with NS9415 by an in-house team based in Scotland.

The incorporated safety features include the following:

  • Freeboards designed to be significantly greater than the requirement as set out in the NS9415 standards for Hs 5-6 rating
  • Load line markings clearly marked on the barge hull to indicate minimum working freeboard, light ship and fully laden levels to the operator
  • A smart new hatch alarm system that is connected to all external hatches, doors, or openings. If any hatches are left open, the alarm system will notify the operator with a combination of audible and visual alerts both inside and outside the barge, meaning operators will not be able to leave the barge without knowing that a hatch or opening has not been closed correctly. This is additional to existing automated bilge alarm systems.
  • Robust DNV-compliant watertight doors and hatches, increasing segregation between rooms throughout the lower levels of each barge
  • Watertight cable glands to ensure all cable transitions through walls keep each void watertight
  • A new heat venting arrangement so that any heat generated from the plant inside the lower levels of the barge is now vented directly outside thus removing any source of heat build-up. As a result, the inside of the barge is kept close to ambient seawater temperature, and this benefits the plant on board and ensures that feed retains its quality in the best available environment.
  • Space to allow installation of optional hybrid systems

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