Gas Bottle Rack Near Miss – No Clear Indications

 close call, falling object, maritime safety news, Safety Alerts  Comments Off on Gas Bottle Rack Near Miss – No Clear Indications
Feb 272012

View of bottle rack showing dislodged bottle

Ensure that locking pins on lifting racks have clear indications whether they are locked or not. That the lesson from a recent call incident at an offshore installation.

Details of near miss:

Whilst back-loading of cargo from an installation, it was noticed that an airborne gas rack on its way down to the Supply Vessel had the door swinging open. It was also noticed from the bridge that one of the bottles inside the rack was at an angle.

The Master alerted the Crane Operator who landed the unit without damage or further incident.

The locking pins on the gas rack door were both found to be in the open position and have
now been secured. One of the bottles inside the unit was found to be looseand able to tip backwards and forwards despite there being a ratchet strap around them.

On checking the bottle rack, it was not immediately apparent that the locks were open as there is no clear indication of the open and locked positions; there were no stickers or other form of markings to show the position the handle should be in. The door looked secure, but on physically
checking, it could still be opened.

Investigation findings:
The rack was not of a type that the Installation deck crew were familiar with, and this may have contributed to the incident.
The rack had been made ready for shipment the previous day when the internal retaining bar had been secured with tie wraps and an additional fabric ratchet strop had been used to secure the cylinders in the rack. These prevented any bottles falling to the deck of the vessel, which could have been potentially serious for the vessel deck crew, although the strap was probably a bit too low.

The rack had then been given a visual check and lifted with no incident from a landing area where bottles had been loaded, to the roof to await backload.

On the day of the back-load, the material controller had carried out the Banks-man’s checks and visually checked the door was closed, attached a Banks-man’s label and sent the load down to the boat. With hindsight, a physically check of the door security was not done as it was believed that the door was secure.

1. Banks-man’s checks should include not only visual, but a physical check of security of any opening doors or panels, not only on gas bottle racks, but any back-loaded cargo.


2. The internal retaining bar and application of an additional fabric ratchet strop clearly prevented the bottles falling when the door opening and it is recommended that bottles racks are not moved without these additional precautions being used.

3. Ratchet straps should be fitted in a position which takes into account the likely centre of gravity of the bottles.
4. Suppliers of bottle racks of similar design should be contacted to make them aware of the need to provide clear indication and instruction as to how doors should be secured.

Beware of the Tar, Baby

 MSF, safety alert, Safety Alerts  Comments Off on Beware of the Tar, Baby
Jun 262011

This tar could give you a nasty knock

Some road, somewhere, is missing a lump of tar. We know this because the chunk in question was found inside the forklift pockets of a container. At 1.2 kilos it was heavy enough to give someone a nasty whack, warns Marine Safety Forum, MSF.


Says MSF: During positioning of a container on a rig, a large lump of what appears to be road tar was seen within one of the forklift pockets of the container. The lump measured 30 x 15 x 5 cms and weighed 1.2 kgs.

“The container, which had forklift pockets on all four side, had been round tripped, taken up to the rig and back loaded and taken back up to the rig before the hazard was spotted, some two weeks after its original dispatch.

The investigation could not determine at what point the lump of tar entered the forklift pockets but it could not have been at the supplier nor the supply base, both of which have fully concreted yard surfaces. Therefore it is possible that it was present for some time prior to the container’s original dispatch. Continue reading »

PSA Gets Stroppy On Statoil’s Heavy Drop

 Accident report  Comments Off on PSA Gets Stroppy On Statoil’s Heavy Drop
Apr 162011

Statoil's Njord A Photo: Øyvind Nesvåg / Statoil

Norway’s Petroleum Safety Authority, PSA, is hauling Statoil over the coals regarding the safety of lifting operations following investigation of a potenially lethal incident involving a ‘dropped object’ weighing 23 tonnes.

The lifting incident on Njord A on 18 December 2010 could,  says the PSA, “under insignificantly altered circumstances, have resulted in loss of life and significant material damage.”

Continue reading »

Dangers Out Of The Side Door

 Offshore, Safety Alerts  Comments Off on Dangers Out Of The Side Door
Aug 272010

image Britain’s Health and Safety Executive, Offshore Division, has issued the following alert regarding Failures of manually operated side-door elevators due to unplanned opening of latch mechanism of side-door elevators lifting large diameter well casing from the horizontal position.

Says HSE: “There have been several serious dropped object incidents in offshore Northern Europe, including a near fatality, involving the use of manually operated side-door elevators to lift large diameter well casing. The incidents involved the unplanned opening of the elevators, during tailing-out or lifting of pipe from a horizontal position, allowing the load to fall. Investigation of the incidents has raised concerns about the safety of the latching mechanism.”

Continue reading »

The DO That Didn’t

 maritime safety, Safety Alerts  Comments Off on The DO That Didn’t
May 312010

imageBy its nature, many of MAC’s posts have unhappy endings. The question is: if you were this storeman would you have identified and acted on a hazard to your shipmates?

Sometimes we get so wrapped in getting the job done that we forget to add ‘safely’. Be alert because the life you save may be your buddy’s.

Marine Safety Forum reports the happy tale thusly:

“Whilst working at the starboard lay down area emptying a container the store man noticed, directly underneath the grating, there was a tank hatch open with a ladder leading down inside. This was the entry into the cargo tank which had been opened for repairs at the bottom of the tank.

Continue reading »

Stop The Drop

 news  Comments Off on Stop The Drop
Feb 192010


Gravity can ruin your whole day. It can even make it your last day, which is a matter of concern to the Dropped Objects Prevention Scheme, DROPS, which MAC has mentioned before. Although Full Stop, its monthly newsletter, is targetted mainly at the offshore industry there’s a lot in it for the rest of us, too.

Here’s a list of just some of the hair-raising,or flattening, close-calls recently reported in the UK region:
Two 0.5kg pieces of roller bearing fell 18 metres to the rig floor from the pipe racker upper dolly.

Continue reading »

Dropping Red Light Hazard

 Offshore, Safety Alerts  Comments Off on Dropping Red Light Hazard
Feb 092010

Throwing a little (broken) light on dropped objects

Marine Safety Forum says “A recent report from a Platform Supply Vessel has highlighted a serious incident on board concerning a dropped object from an offshore installation crane. Although no injuries were sustained as a result of this incident, the deck crew were working on the main deck of the PSV at the time and could have been struck by this dropped object.

At 1750 hours, a bang was heard from the top of the PSV’s bridge/monkey island. The second  officer went up to investigate and came down with the remains of a red lamp. This lamp was first believed to be part of the ship’s NUC light but when tested the ship’s NUC lights were found to working.

Continue reading »

Searching For Dropping Rogues

 marine safety forum, maritime safety, maritime safety news  Comments Off on Searching For Dropping Rogues
Nov 092009

imageStill got that lump hammer that nearly clobbered you? The Dropped Object Prevention Scheme, DROPS, wants to know – it might find fame in the organisation’s rogues gallery of things that drop from the sky.

DROPS has already installed a large display of actual and potential dropped object items at an Aberdeen Heliport. Examples include ‘rogue’ tools, equipment and scrap items, many of which could have caused a serious injury or fatality if they had fallen and struck personnel below.

Continue reading »