Matanuska Ferry/Ocean Beauty Dock Contact: Master Did Not Recognise Error

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Jul 122012

Still from a YouTube video shortly after impact

Alaska’s Department of Transportation and Public Facilities, DOT&PF, and the Alaska Marine Highway System, AMHS, have concluded the internal investigation of the May 7, 2012 incident involving the M/V Matanuska and the Ocean Beauty Seafoods dock in Petersburg, Alaska. The report claims that the master made a navigation error but had too little time to correct it.

“While we regret the mishap ever happened it is the responsibility of AMHS to conduct a thorough investigation so that we may take the necessary steps toward reducing the possibility of any such event reoccurring,” stated Michael Neussl, DOT&PF Deputy Commissioner for Marine Operations. Continue reading »

Sep 242011

At 1524 (UTC) on 26 February 2011, the platform supply vessel (PSV) SBS Typhoon was undertaking functional trials of a newly installed dynamic positioning (DP) system while alongside in Aberdeen Harbour. Full ahead pitch was inadvertently applied to the port and
starboard controllable pitch propellers (CPP), causing the ship to move along the quay.

Contact was made with the standby safety vessel Vos Scout and the PSV Ocean Searcher, causing structural and deck equipment damage.

Ahead pitch was applied to the CPPs because an incorrect pitch command signal was generated by the DP system signal modules. The error was not identified during factory tests or during the pre-trial checks although the system documentation specified the correct
signal values. Actions taken on board to limit damage were hampered by a defective engine emergency stop and because a mode selector switch on the DP system was not moved to the correct position.

The following video appears to have been speeded up:

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ERRV Contact: Master Unaware of Autopilot

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Jul 112011

Following a man-overboard exercise during which an ERRV has drifted farther than expected from an offshore facility the master, apparently ‘subconsciously’, set the vessel on autopilot. Tidal set put the vessel on collision course with the facility but the master, unaware that the vessel was on autopilot, was unable to regain steering and a contact incident resulted.

Says  Marine Safety Forum, MSF, has issued a report into the accident says: “Recently an ERRV made contact with a fixed installation causing some damage to the vessel and minor damage to the installation. Continue reading »

Norman Arrow Contact: Blowing In The Wind Blind

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Jun 122011

Norman Arrow - swift but poorly designed bridge

Repeated contact incidents in Portsmouth and Le Havre involving the high speed ferry Norman Arrow, one of the largest of its kind in the world, were due to poor bridge design, lack of procedures for manoeuvring the high-sided light-displacement craft in strong winds, poor bridge team management and communications and the Maritime and Coastguard Agency’s difficulty in assessing whether the visibility from Norman Arrow’s manoeuvring station met the requirements of the High Speed Craft Code says a Marine Accident Investigation Branch report. Continue reading »

MV Antonis contact: A Bridge Too Far

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Jun 052011

Antonis, a Greek registered bulk carrier, was being manoeuvred stern-first from the port of Liverpool’s Langton Dock to Alexandra Dock with a pilot on board. As she entered the passageway between the docks, her stern started to drift towards the eastern wall under the influence of a north-westerly wind. The pilot was unable to counter the drift, and the vessel’s hull, in way of a topside fuel oil tank, made contact with the sharp edge of a counterweight fitted on the open swing bridge. This caused a 1.5 metre gash in the vessel’s side that resulted in about 330 tonnes of fuel oil spilling into the dock system.

The counterweight had been fitted when the swing bridge had been lengthened. The investigation found that, prior to the accident, the port authority, Mersey
Docks and Harbour Company Ltd, had not identified that the counterweight on
the refurbished bridge was a potential hazard to marine operations, and that
no formal risk assessment had been conducted since the bridge had been
The port authority intends to implement a number of actions designed to enhance the safety of vessels using the Langton-Alexandra passageway.
Mersey Docks and Harbour Company Ltd has been recommended to expedite this work.

Full report here

Djurgården 4 Contact: Disconnected Cable Led To Crush

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Apr 252011

A disconnected cable resulted in the master being unable to put the engine into neutral or astern from ahead and a subsequent hard contact with the jetty at Nybrokajen says the Swedish Transport Agency. Some 24 passengers one injured, including one broken collarbone.

Why the cable disconnected is unknown and no disconnection alarm was fitted. A casual observation would not have revealed the problem because of the cable covering. The incident does highlight the need to initiate critical manouevres with enough time to take appropriate action.

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Apr 112011

ASTORIA, Ore. — The Coast Guard is investigating an allision involving the tugboat Clarkston and the deep draft cargo vessel Genco Marine on the Columbia River near Vancouver, Wash., Thursday.

Coast Guard Sector Columbia River, Ore., received a call at approximately 9:30 a.m., reporting the allision at Columbia River mile marker 102.5, near the Vancouver anchorage, with possible damage to the Clarkston.

Coast Guard Marine Safety Unit Portland, Ore., is currently investigating.

The Genco Marine was at anchor during the time of the allision.

Queen of Nanaimo: Grounding: A Case of Loose Dowel Movements

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Dec 182010

Queen of Nanaimo: Loose Dowels did her in

Two loose dowel pins and poor shipboard communications led to a contact incident  of BC Ferries Queen of Nanaimo on 3 August 2010, says an internal company report obtained through the Freedom of Information Act by the Vancouver Sun.

The incident, in which the vessel hit a dock at 5 knots, resulted in four injuries to passengers and six to employees.

Each of the vessel’s two controlled pitch propeller arrangements include two tapered dowels which secure the auxiliary servo piston and the lever on top of the Kamewa control post which moves the valve rod for the propeller hub.  After the incident the two dowels in the port oil distributor box were missing.

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CFL Patron Contact: CPP Goes Wild – Expect It

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Nov 032010

CFL Patron

Controllable pitch propellers, CPPs, have a habit of belying their own name. Since CCPs often do not fail-to-safe and you could find yourself bucking around in a large vessel in close and crowded quarters so be ready for it when it happens.

That’s the message from the UK’s Marine Accident Investigation Branch, MAIB, in its preliminary report into a contact incident involving CFL Patron in Immingham Docks.

MAIB did not discover why the CPP failed but the Chief Inspector of Marine Accidents has written to the vessel’s manager, CFL Shipmanagement B.V., regarding emergency preparedness for propulsion failures on its vessels; pre-departure testing of propulsion systems; and preservation of evidence and data following an accident.

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