August 2021 Newsletter

The Marine Chemist Association held an Executive Board meeting via Zoom on August 17, 2021.

A summary of the meeting and a general discussion follows.

On July 19, 2021 a virtual annual meeting was held. An overview of the Association activities and upcoming seminars was presented along with a budget review. During the budget review a motion to eliminate the 2022 sectional dues was passed. This was a result of the lack of in person seminars during 2020/2021 where the funds were not expended.

One of the major items discussed during the meeting was the change to the MCA By-Laws. The Board had the By-Laws reviewed by an attorney who specializes in non-profits in Connecticut where our Association has its legal headquarters. The attorney made several comments and pointed out several areas where the Association did not meet either federal or state regulations. Through a lengthy process the By-Laws were revised and presented to members. Several members made comments prior to presenting them to the membership for approval. These comments were provided to the attorney and changes were made and the By-Laws altered.

At the annual meeting the revision to the By-Laws were accepted by a 2/3 membership vote. The new By-Laws are posted in the Members Only section of the website.

Also, during the annual meeting new sectional delegates and alternates were elected. (The Pacific section had already completed this) The Board of Directors (BOD) is as follows;

a. Executive Committee (BOD)
Michael Schmidt, Chairman, Term expires 7/22 (Late)
Brian Axelrad, Past Chairman, Term expires 7/22
Philip Giles, Chairman Elect, Term expires 7/22
Donald Raffo, Secretary/Treasurer (Serves at pleasure of Board)

b. Board of Directors (BOD)
Peter Raffo, Atlantic, Term expires 4/22
Austin Montanti, Atlantic, Term expires 4/23
Bryan Berna, Pacific, Term expires 4/23
Vince Pempeit, Pacific, Term expires 4/22 (Absent)
Tom Govey, Gulf, Term expires 4/22
Toby Turcotte, Gulf, Term expires 4/23

c. Sectional Alternate Directors
i. Lucas Kuebler, term starts 7/22
ii. Brent Campbell, term starts 7/22
iii. Brian Axelrad, term starts 7/22
iv. Pacific alternate Jeff Hanson
v. Atlantic alternate Robert Albert
vi. Gulf/Inland alternate Gary Snell

MCA Annual Virtual Seminar 2021

The MCA Annual Seminar will be virtual this year. It will be held on September 17th from 1200 to 1600 EST and on September 18th from 0800-1200 EST. You must attend both sessions via video to obtain credit. Calling in only by audio will not receive credit. The agenda is as follows;

Introduction. Don Raffo/Mike Schmidt 9/17 1200
Overview of Recent MGHCP Activities. Joe Cox, 9/17 1210
Overview of Recent OSHA Activities. Amy Wangdahl, 9/17 1245-1315
MCQB, Their Role in the Marine Chemist Program. Larry Russell, 9/17 1330-1500.
Update on the use of the New EMCC Program. Brian Axelrad 9/17 1500- End
Incidents and Occurrences. Larry Russell 9/18 0800-0900

LEL Sensors update, Bob Henderson, GFG 9/18 0900-1000

Considerations in Cleaning and Over Pressurization. Josh Marshall/Franklin Li, 9/18 1000-1030

Next Edition of NFPA 306 Draft Proposals. Don Raffo 9/18 1030-End
Connection information is on the website. There is no charge for members to attend. Non-members will be charged a $78.00 fee payable on the website, once payment is made please send an email to and the information to join will be sent.

The Second 2021 Sectional Seminar

The next sectional seminar will start at 0900 EST on October 23, 2021. There is no charge for MCA members or associates to attend. Non-members will be charged a $78.00 fee payable on the website, once payment is made please send an email to and the information to join will be sent.

Log on information for members can be found on the forum site. If you attended the spring sectional seminar you are welcome to attend this seminar but, you will not get credit for this seminar.

Topics and presenters are as follows.

Cleaning a tank to meet the Safe for Hot Work Standard Safety Designation (SSD) Joshua Marshall CMC 721

  • What cleaning is required to meet the Safe for Hot Work Requirement?
  • How are pipelines handled?
  • How are adjacent spaces handled?
  • Cleaning perspectives from a cleaning company.

Inspection of a Tank to meet the Safe for Hot Work SSD. Lamar Labauve CMC 576, Retired.

  • What does a chemist look for?
  • What does a chemist look for in pipelines?
  • How do you test pipelines?
  • What do you look for in adjacent spaces
  • What do you test for (hot work only)

Issuing a Safe for Hot Work Certificate. Don Raffo CMC 668.

  • What is required on a certificate?
  • How do you list the test result?
  • Best practices?
  • How do you write a good SFHW certificate?

While the MCA had hoped to have an in-person annual seminar this year the level of uncertainty involved in scheduling in person group meetings created too many obstacles.