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USCG Policy Letter - Equivalency Determination: Design Criteria for Natural Gas Fuel Systems


Subject:  Guidelines for Liquefied Natural Gas Fuel Transfer Operations and Training of Personnel on Vessels Using Natural Gas as Fuel. 

Author: United States Coast Guard

Total Pages: 17

Summary:  CG-521 Policy Letter No. 01-12, dated April 19, 2012

This letter was announced by the U.S. Coast Guard, via the Federal Register, along with another letter (U.S. Coast Guard Commandant (CG-OES) Policy Letter No. 02-14), seeking public comment.  The public comment period for this document ended on March 10, 2014; the letter remains in draft.  This letter provides voluntary guidance for Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) fuel transfer operations on vessels using natural gas as fuel in U.S. waters, and training of personnel on those vessels.  It also recommends transfer and personnel training measures to achieve a level of safety that is equivalent to that provided for traditional fueled vessels.  It would apply to vessels that use LNG as fuel, but not to vessels that carry LNG as cargo that use boil-off gas as fuel.

This letter establishes design criteria for natural gas fuel systems that provide a level of safety that is at least equivalent to that provided for traditional fuel systems by existing U.S. regulations, since, with the exception of boil-off gas used on LNG carriers, existing U.S. regulations DO NOT address design and installation of natural gas fuel systems on commercial vessels.  This letter does not provide guidance on the operational aspects associated with the use of natural gas as a fuel, nor does it address crew proficiency standards for the handling of natural gas.