Skip to main content

Developed and maintained by the NFCC

Control measure

Locate the fire

Control measure knowledge

The incident commander should consider gathering information gathering from the ship's crew to help identify and locate the fire. Ships crews may also be available to act as wayfinders or guides to lead responding fire and rescue service teams to the appropriate scene of operations.

If the vessel's fire defence systems are still live, examining the fire detectors or fixed installations displays in conjunction with the vessel's plans may give a good indication of the location of the fire.

All available information should be confirmed, collected and analysed before confirming the location of the seat of the fire.

Visible indicators of fire locations may include:

  • The presence of flame
  • The presence of smoke, its density and temperature, whether it is being discharged from ventilators or other openings
  • Heat damage
  • Bulkhead or deck head discoloration
  • Blistering or burning off paintwork
  • Steaming off from application of water spray

On-board systems that may also assist with identifying (but are not restricted to) the location of the fire includes:

  • Temperature monitoring equipment
  • Bulkhead thermometers
  • The vessel's temperature monitoring system
  • Fire detection or suppression systems that have activated
  • Closed-circuit television (CCTV)

Strategic actions

Fire and rescue services should:
  • Where a risk is identified, ensure suitable and sufficient training is provided on locating fires on board vessels

Tactical actions

Incident commanders should:
  • Use on-board systems, in liaison with the vessel's personnel, to confirm the location of the fire