Nov 202014
 
FVliberty

Sooner or later the chances were that someone was going to be killed aboard the 13.32 metre Irish registered FV Liberty. Given the long list of safety issues uncovered by Ireland’s Marine Casualty Investigation Board, MCIB, and the fact that an earlier incident involving an injury went unreported so the conditions that resulted in the death of a seafarer on 14 February 2013 went undetected, tragedy was inevitable and preventable.

In port at Dunmore East prior to the voyage, one of the trawl nets on the vessel, supplied by the owner, was swapped for a used net supplied by the skipper. The skipper’s net had been kept in storage and had not been used since October 2012. The net was apparently changed because
it was deemed to be more suitable for the intended fishing grounds  where the vessel was going to fish. Continue reading »

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Oct 142014
 

wildeMost of us like to push the limits often because our experience tells us we can do so safely. Just because we can does not mean we should, a lesson from Ireland’s Marine Casualty Investigation Board in its report into the collision between two ro-ro ferries: Stena Europe and Oscar Wilde in the port of Rosslare.

At 17.45 on 26 October 2012  as Stena Europe approached Rosslare the vessel’s master took over as OOW and the Mate/Master briefed the bridge team on the intended approach to the berth. The OOW called Rosslare Harbour Port Control and confirmed a wind direction of 028° (T) and a wind speed between 29 and 35 knots. The fact that the vessel had the use of only 3 out of four engines was not reported to port control.

Another source for information on wind speed and direction Information of wind speed and direction was also available from an instrument installed by Stena Line on the breakwater; this transmitted the information by
radio to displays on the bridge wings of the Stena Europe. Continue reading »

Jan 072013
 
Rambler-100. The front stayed on but the keel fell off.

Rambler-100. The front stayed on but the keel fell off.

One might not normally compare tugs and racing yachts but both have a knack for capsizing, or girting, fast often with tragic results for the crew. Some of the lessons and suggestions from the investigation into the capsize of Rambler 100 by Eire’s Marine Casualty Investigation Board may equally apply to tugs and similar vessels.

While manoeuvring, part of the Rambler-1oo’s keel snapped off, not uncommon in one-off built yachts. Within 15 second she was laid on her side and turned turtle

in less than 60 seconds. Fortunately her crew survived. While tugs girt for different reasons the challenges of surviving capsize are very similar.

MCIB’s conclusions and suggestions are:

Continue reading »

Aug 192011
 

SOLAS B equipment pack

Crabber Léim an Bhradán, with two crew aboard, had every thing required for emergency communications: flares, EPIRB, VHF as well as a liferaft but none of it worked when she capsized at about 1400 on the morning of Saturday 30th October 2010. The incident serves as a cautionary tale whatever size vessel you’re on.

Her inflatable liferaft sat unsecured in a cradle atop the wheelhouse. It was not equipped with a hydrostatic release or weak-link that would result in the liferaft opening automatically and the painter was not attached to the vessel. The two crew then found themselves faced with trying to open the canister while it floated free.

One of the two men was able to cut the canister straps with a key.

Meanwhile the vessel’s EPIRB went down with the boat. It was in the wheelhouse, not in an external float-free holder, so could not float to the surface and activate.

The men finally boarded the SOLAS equipment pack in the liferaft and fired off two red parachute flares but there were no other vessels around to see them. An hour later they saw a Coast Guard helicopter and fired an orange smoke flare which was not seen by the helicopter, which was on a training flight. Continue reading »

Sep 242010
 
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Victim's position

Marijus Rudakov fell overboard from the FV Alma Amy and drowned. He was not wearing a life jacket.

Just another one of those sad tiny tragedies doom themselves to a watery death and their families to grief by not wearing a lifejacket.

Ireland’s Maritime Casualty Investigation Board points out in its report “It is a statutory obligation for fishermen whilst on the deck of a fishing vessel to wear suitable lifejackets”.

Wearing a lifejacket is arguably also a fisherman’s obligation to his family.

Why Mr. Rudakov fell overboard is unknown. He can’t tell because he wasn’t wearing a lifejacket.

The harrowing attempts to save Mr. Rudakov are outlined in the MCIB report:

Continue reading »