Winter 2012 Issue


With honor and gratitude I write to express my deepest appreciation to everyone for your contin-ued encouragement and support.

It is your kindness and patience that allowing me the opportunity to serve our Association, its pre-cious members, Shipyards and the Marine Industry at large. Additionally, I owe it to the past and pre-sent leadership in our Association, MCQB, NFPA and OSHA, whom with a plethora range of experi-ence, expertise, advice and their unlimited will-ingness to share.

There have been many significant developments in and around our mist and many Marine Chemists are still very much the nucleus of this constant evolution. Your collective dedication, contribution as well as personal sacrifices are immeasurable and it is important that you all be acknowledged and appreciated. I would like to point out just a few projects, the rest I defer to the Secretary’s Newsletters:

–Final Rule: OSHA 29 CFR 1915 Subpart F– “General Working Conditions” is being put into effect;

–NFPA-306 is in its 2012 revision cycle and proposed changes are due in by 5 PM November 25, 2011;

–NFPA-306 Technical Committee is gearing up for a ton of proposed changes and revisions to complex and confusing issues;

–MCQB recently ruled that the ACGIH’s 2011 Hy-drogen Sulfide TLV-TWA of 1 ppm, STEL of
5 ppm must should be followed by all CMCs; –MCQB also recommended various Certificate writ-ing exercises–based on actual occurrences–to be used in training seminars;

–MCA/Executive and Educational Committees are working on revamping the training seminars with specialized topics, selected speakers/presenters, and to be more applicable and educational–both in depth, intensity and professional quality;

–NFPA is finalizing the new Electronic Marine

Chemist Certificate (EMCC) to be fully implemented by the first quarter of 2012. Final field-testing of this program is in progress and it is believed to be very user-friendly. Once the field-testing is completed, groups of 25 CMCs will be issued their “EMCC Toolkits” for immediate implementation;

–Marine Gas Hazard Control Program/NFPA met in San Diego this past July and appropriated funding through the NFPA to supply turn-key/easy-to-use “EMCC Toolkits” to all CMCs. At no expense to CMCs, this great incentive should trigger a quick adoption of the EMCC program with ease;

–Each “EMCC Toolkit” will include a portable lap-top computer, electronic certificate-writing soft-ware/database and a printer–fully functional and ready for CMCs to issue official Certificates on the job. Hard copies may be printed as well as .pdf ver-sions available for emailing or archival purposes. Names and company’s logos may be custom tailored for each CMC. Additional details will be available soon;

–NFPA and MCA websites for CMCs are beautifully redesigned and updated with useful information
such as modules for Trainees, Rules, References, NFPA Standards, News and Seminars, Calendar of Events, Special Topics, and other relevant links;

–Rules for Certification and Re-Certification were revised this year and posted on the websites;

–”Recommended Certificate Writing Style” has also been revised to promote consistency, uniform format and reduction of omissions or errors. Eventually this guidance document will become less significant as
the adoption of the EMCC increases;

–MACOSH 2011-2012 Charter (Maritime Advisory Committee for Occupational Safety and Health) has two CMCs on board and diligently working on developing OSHA QuickCards, FactSheets, and Guidance documents including topics relating to Hot Work, Fire Watch, Fire Protection, Ventila-tion, Hollow and Enclosed Structures, CHTs En-try/Tank Cleaning/Hot Work, etc. These docu-ments may be in bi-lingual (Engish-Spanish) and should be very useful for training and distribution purposes.

Parallel with these accomplishments, the total number of Certificates issued by all CMCs around the country this year is projected to hit an all-time record high – again! Unfortunately, the number of our active CMCs is dwindling down to below 90 for the first time in decades…with the average age hovering around 56. There are at least half a dozen of CMCs at or above the legal retirement age of 65…Maybe it’s an indication that we should start looking and grooming a few capable Trainees in the very near future.

I believe that the safety of the ship-repair industry will continue to rest in the capable hands of each individual Marine Chemists and we should be maintained as the best-possible safety profession-als in terms of capabilities, competency and avail-ability. It is of utmost importance that we continue to do our job safely each day as well as continuing the tradition and motivation to become even better. We need to work smart and be cautious, diligent and considerate. The vigorous pursuit of excel-lence in terms of safety, health, strength and suste-nance, as well as being environmentally responsi-ble should be on every Chemist’s daily agenda. We are the pillar, standing on an enduring foundation, supporting the continue survival of our profession and the success of ship repair operations.

Although it is not always possible to have “Fair Winds and Calm Seas”, I wish you the smoothest and safest sailing possible in your daily functions as NFPA Certified Marine Chemists and continued success in all of your business endeavors.

As we take care of ourselves, our loved ones and our clients, we also respect our elders and nurture our young.

Philip Dovinh, MCA Chairman Elect.