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Roof

Tilting and product overflow in MS Floating Roof Tank


12metrediax11mtsheight(1000KL)externalfloatingrooftank(doubledeck)wasinoperationina POLterminal.Intheaftermathofheavyrainfall,theroofwasfoundtohavetilted.Duetothetilt, MSwasexposedononepartoftheroof. The location suspended all operations of the tank, applied AFFF foam for blanketing the exposed product and subsequently, tried to evacuate the tank fully by transferring the product to suitable adjacenttankbydrawingofproductfromthewaterdrawoffnozzle. Evacuationofproductfailedtoimprovethetiltandnonsubmergedpontoonswerefilledwithwater to counter the tilt while simultaneously withdrawing the product from the tank. After filling two pontoonswithwater,thetilteddeckgotunstuckandcamebacktoitsnormalposition.Thereafter, thetankwasemptiedout. TheOMCinvestigationintheincidentrevealedthat: Thefillingheightofthetankwasrestrictedto700cminviewofsweatingobservedinthe shellabovethislevel. 2. Thegrossdiplevelatthetimeofincidentwas335cmsandthetankwasrestingontheshort legsafterthetilt. 3. The entire deck moved towards the submerged section and further movement was obstructedbythedipwellactingasahinge.Themovementoftheroofbentthedippipe andabout600mmgapwascreatedbetweentheshellandtheroof.Therollingladderwas alsotwisted. 4. Fourofthe13pontoonsnearthedipwellpipewerepartiallyfilledwithproductandwater mixandtherestofthepontoonswerefullysubmerged. 5. Somedegreeofdeformationoftheshellwasalsoobservedintheformofdrippingfromthe tankbodyoutletnozzlebetweentheshellandthebodyvalve. Theprobablecausesfoundoutduringtheinvestigationare:
1.

The tank roof got flooded with rain water consequence to the heavy rain fall in the three daysprecedingtheincident. 2. Theaccommodatedrainwaterontheroofgotitswaytothepontoonsthroughtheheavily corrodedtopdeckhavinglargecorrosionholes. 3. Theaccumulationinthepontoonscausedtiltandsubsequentrotationagainstthedipwell pipe displacing the weather shields and distorting the secondary shield, thus creating the gapbetweentheroofandtheshellthroughwhichtheproductfloodedtheroof. Thelearningfromthisincidentisasfollows:
1.

1. Whensweatingwasobservedonthetopstrakesoftheshell,necessaryinvestigationshould havebeenconductedonthematerialintegrityoftheroofastheroofismoreexposedtothe elementsthantheshell.

2. Inspite of the tank roof having developed corrosion holes, the tank was neither decommissionednorwasfurthermaintenanceworktakenup. 3. Routineroofinspectionofthistankwasnoteffectiveotherwisethelevelofcorrosioncould nothavereachedthislevel. 4. RoutinemonsoonprecautionsandSOPsforfloatingrooftanksafterheavyrainfallswerenot followed.