This results in the door buckling or flying open and another compartment needlessly flooding. The correct procedure is to
slack off slightly on the dogs adjacent to the hinges where there is a slight amount of clearance around the hinge pins.
As the dogs are loosened, water, if any is present, will begin to trickle between the gasket and the knife edges on that
side. Control is still maintained by the hinges and the opposite dogs. This method cannot be used with quick-acting
doors or scuttles where the hatch dogging devices are interconnected.
Investigators should take no action which might cause loss of control of a watertight fitting, and
all compartments must be re-secured after leaving them. Failure to do so creates a hazard to the
survival of the ship.
As in the case of progressive flooding through damaged or improperly maintained fittings, fire, gas and smoke may be
spread in a similar manner. Open flues such as trunks and ventilation ducts are potential sources of trouble. The latter
are especially dangerous, for if they contain flammable dust or are not properly secured, they will carry fire to other parts
of the ship. Fire has been known to travel along electrical cables, and the heat transferred by metal bulkheads has
caused fires in parts of the ship far distant from the original source. It is necessary to inspect a wide area around the
scene of a fire in order that the damage may be localized. The danger of overheating magazines and ammunition
stowage areas must be avoided. Care should also be exercised when opening watertight hatches or scuttles into the
compartments suspected of containing fire. There is a distinct possibility that heat within the compartment may build an
over-pressure within the space, below the hatch, and belch fire and smoke when the dogs are loosened.
Initial steps of control. After the initial investigation, steps shall be taken to localize and control the
damage, and investigate for hidden or potential damage. Repair party provided with protective equipment, lighting and
ventilating facilities, and other required tools shall take the following general steps:
Crew members must wear an Oxygen Breathing Apparatus (OBA) while fighting fires below
decks and should wear this equipment whenever possible while fighting fires on weather decks
or similar open areas. Failure to do so can cause serious personal injury.
If fire is present, the fire-fighting party must begin operations immediately.