• Part Number:
  • Part Number Title:
    Safety and Health Regulations for Longshoring
  • Subpart:
    1918 Subpart E
  • Subpart Title:
    Opening and Closing Hatches
  • Standard Number:
  • Title:
    Handling hatch beams and covers.
  • GPO Source:

Paragraphs (f)(2), (g), and (h) of this section apply only to folding, sliding, or hinged metal hatch covers or to those hatch covers handled by cranes.


When hatch covers or pontoons are stowed on the weather deck abreast of hatches, they shall be arranged in stable piles not closer to the hatch coaming than three feet (.91 m). Exception: On the working side of the hatch, hatch covers or pontoons may be spread one high between the coaming and bulwark with no space between them, provided the height of the hatch coaming is no less than 24 inches (.61 m). Under no circumstances shall hatch covers or pontoons be stacked higher than the hatch coaming or bulwark on the working side of the hatch.


On seagoing vessels, hatch boards or similar covers removed from the hatch beams in a section of partially opened hatch during cargo handling, cleaning or other operations shall not be stowed on the boards or covers left in place within that section.


Hatch beams shall be laid on their sides, or stood on an edge close together and lashed. Exception: This paragraph (b) shall not apply in cases where hatch beams are of such design that:


The width of the flange is 50 percent or more of the height of the web; and


The flange rests flat on the deck when the hatch beam is stood upright.


Strongbacks, hatch covers, and pontoons removed from hatch openings and placed on the weather deck shall not obstruct clear fore-and-aft or coaming-to-bulwark passageways and shall be lashed or otherwise secured to prevent accidental dislodgement. Dunnage or other suitable material shall be used under and between tiers of strongbacks and pontoons to prevent them from sliding when stowed on steel decks.


Hatch covers unshipped in an intermediate deck shall be placed at least three feet (.91 m) from the coaming or they shall be removed to another deck. Strongbacks unshipped in an intermediate deck shall not be placed closer than six inches (15.24 cm) from the coaming and, if placed closer than three feet (.91 m), shall be secured so that they cannot be tipped or dragged into a lower compartment. If such placement or securement is not possible, strongbacks shall be removed to another deck.


Any hatch beam or pontoon left in place next to an open hatch section being worked shall be locked or otherwise secured, so that it cannot be accidentally displaced. All portable, manually handled hatch covers, including those bound together to make a larger cover, shall be removed from any working section, and adjacent sections, unless securely lashed.


The roller hatch beam at the edge of the open section of the hatch shall be lashed or pinned back so that it cannot be moved toward the open section.


Rolling, sectional or telescopic hatch covers of barges that open in a fore and aft direction shall be secured against unintentional movement while in the open position.


Hinged or folding hatch covers normally stowed in an approximately vertical position shall be positively secured when in the upright position, unless the design of the system otherwise prevents unintentional movement.


Hatches shall not be opened or closed while employees are in the square of the hatch below.


All materials such as dunnage, lashings, twist locks, or stacking cones shall be removed from the hatch cover or be secured to prevent them from falling off the cover before the hatch cover is moved.


When a hatch is to be covered, hatch covers or night tents shall be used. Any covering that only partially covers the hatch, such as alternate hatch covers or strips of dunnage, shall not be covered by a tarpaulin. Exception: A tarpaulin may be used to cover an open or partially open hatch to reduce dust emissions during bulk cargo loading operations, if positive means are taken to prevent employees from walking on the tarpaulin.

[62 FR 40101, July 25, 1997; 65 FR 40944, June 30, 2000]