The incident

When a Hong Kong registered bulk carrier was berthed alongside at port, an assistant electrical officer bought a bottle of vodka from shore.

He consumed the alcohol with other crew in an oiler’s cabin during their rest period.

Thereafter, the assistant electrical officer went outside the accommodation for reason unknown.

About 1 to 2 minutes later, he was found fallen overboard and rescued back to the vessel for first aid treatment. But he was declared dead later due to drowning.


Probable causes

The investigation revealed the contributing factors to the accident are as follows:

  • the assistant electrical officer under the influence of alcohol, might have lost his balance and fell into the sea from the shipside; and
  • the vessel failed to implement the alcohol policy set by the company.


Lessons learned

It is important that masters, all officers and crew on board ships should strictly follow the alcohol policy set by the company even during rest hours,

...Hong Kong MARDEP advised after investigating this incident.


See also: