Sep 302008

An electronic chart display and better training for manual steering in restricted waters may have prevented the grounding of the general cargo ship Rosethorn in the Drogden Rende in May, says the Danish Maritime Authority, DMA. It is the second report in a month from the DMA in which the master was under the influence of alcohol, although not on watch at the time.

Rosethorn, registered in St. Vincent and Grenadines and classed with the Polish Classification Society Polski Rejestr Statkow, grounded outside the dredged channel  at 0305 on 21st May, 2007 with 1,500 tonnes of fertilizer on board. There was no pollution and the vessel was released from detention on 6th July.

The Chief Officer had taken the watch from the Master at midnight together with an AB. The AB had no training in manual steering in restricted waters and the Chief Officer took on the entire navigational workload. While manually steering the ship he could not see the radar ARPA display.

He became so focussed on collision avoidance that he lost situational awareness, was unclear about the vessel’s position and did not hear warnings that he entering shallows from the Vessel Traffic Service.

DMA believes that an electronic chart display would have helped the chief officer maintain awareness of his position and has recommended that ECDIS be fitted. It has also recommended that the shipowner: ”…introduces procedures on board its vessels, assuring that onboard deck crews are able to perform manual steering in restricted waters.”

Download full report here.

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