New Zealand’s Transport Accident Investigation Commission has released an interim report of its independent inquiry into the grounding of the containership Rena on Astrolabe Reef, in the Bay of Plenty, at 2.14am on 5 October 2011.
The incident is said to have led to the worst oil spill in New Zealand’s history.
The report sets out facts of the accident that have been able to be verified to date but does not contain analysis of why events happened as they did or say what could change to help prevent a recurrence. These matters will be covered in the Commission’s final inquiry report.
Today’s report describes how the Rena left Napier and deviated from its intended course as it headed to a 3.00am meeting with the Tauranga pilot boat. The report details how the ship was navigated, including the use of its autopilot, GPS positions, and charts. At 1.50am, the report says, the Rena was on a direct track for Astrolabe Reef.