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Health and safety

MAIB report on Dutch vessel container loss puts focus on crew and securing arrangements

4 May 2022

A UK Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB) report into the loss of containers from a Netherlands-registered vessel, has suggested that a combination of crew and equipment factors contributed to the loss.

The cargo vessel, Francisca, was feeling the affects of severe weather near Duncansby Head, in the North Sea, when 34 containers fell overboard.

MAIB found three areas at fault in its investigation, which it has advised the technical manager of the ship (VMS Ship Management BV) and the charterer (Longship BV) to improve.

MAIB found that the ship did not have a protective breakwater at its bow, which would have protected cargo when the poor conditions caused the ship to lose control and slow.

Further to this, the report states that the crew underestimated the conditions due to the frequency of their trips between Iceland and the Netherlands in poor conditions.

Finally, MAIB adds that corrosion on the equipment securing the containers meant the loss was particularly large.


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