When a Queen Should Give Way To Pride

 close call, close quarters  Comments Off on When a Queen Should Give Way To Pride
Mar 112008

MAIB has published it’s preliminary investigation into a close call between the QE2 and the Pride Of Kent:

At 2200 UTC on 15 December 2007 in light winds and good visibility a close quarters situation occurred between Queen Elizabeth 2 and Pride of Kent.

Queen Elizabeth 2, on passage from Zeebrugge to Southampton, was south west bound in the Dover Strait Traffic Separation Scheme. Her track was biased to the starboard side of the traffic lane. Pride of Kent departed Dover for a scheduled voyage to Calais, observing the voluntary separation scheme established for ferry operators. As the vessels approached, a close quarters situation developed in which Queen Elizabeth 2 was required to give way.

When it became apparent that no avoiding action was being taken by Queen Elizabeth 2, Pride of Kent reduced her speed allowing Queen Elizabeth 2 to pass 0.6mile ahead of Pride of Kent.

There were no injuries to personnel and no pollution.

Action taken:

Following the accident, the Chief Inspector of Marine Accidents has considered the actions taken by both the companies and is satisfied with the steps they have taken to prevent future accidents.

Cunard Line will:

  • Send a letter to the fleet that describes the incident, identifies lessons learnt and provides actions to prevent future recurrence.
  • Provide further development of company specific Bridge Resource Management training.
  • Implement their recently rewritten, and currently trialled, Bridge Resource Management Procedures.

P&O Ferries will:

  • Carry out an internal investigation that will result in a review of bridge procedures throughout the fleet and identify actions to avoid similar situations in the future.

Give Us A Wave!!!

 rogue waves  Comments Off on Give Us A Wave!!!
Oct 092007

You won’t many of these to the pound. Long thought to be just a seafarers myth, rogue waves of 20 metres, and sometimes much more are now being seriously studied and know to be much more frequent than once thought, that’s to radar imagery from the European Space Agency.

It’s hardly surprising that as many as 200 ships have been sunk over the past 20 years by these watery behemoths.

Read Karsten Petersen’s account of the wave that nearly tore the chemcial tanker Stolt Surf apart. A wave that he had to look UP at from a deck already 22 metres above waterline.

Such a wave broke windows on the 10th Deck of the 92,250 gross tonnes cruise ship Norwegian Dawn in April 2005 and the bridge on the 6,753 Bremen in 2001.

Something similar took a whole chunk out of the bow of the Norwegian tanker Wilstar:

And here’s another arer photo from the Bay of Biscay:

In 1995 The QE2 met a 29 metre wave in the North Atlantic, around 50 years after the Queen Mary was almost capsized by a rogue wave.

And here’s a wave that swept across the super tanker Esso Languedoc in 1980.

Freak wave © Philippe Lijour

These are not always triggerd by a storm, and shouldn’t be confused with tsunami waves. These monsters can come out of nowhere.