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Channel Ferries (Fire Drills)

Volume 174: debated on Monday 18 June 1990

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To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, pursuant to his reply, Official Report, 7 June, column 696, what fire drill practice passengers on cross-channel ferries undergo on each voyage; and what fire drill information they are given in case of fire.

Fire drills are directed at the crew and passengers are not required to participate. A fire in a space used by passengers should be detected by automatic fire detection systems or by fire patrols required by the SOLAS convention. This will activate the measures provided on the vessel for fighting a fire—including the provision of trained crew. In the event of a fire passengers would be instructed on the public address system to muster at specified positions on the vessels in the same way as in any other emergency. These instructions are also required to be posted in cabins and in other spaces used by passengers.