As IMCA informs a person got struck when anchor wire end pulled free of drum clamps. After the accident, IMCA provided lessons learned.
person was seriously injured when he was struck by the end of a 58mm anchor wire. The incident occurred when crew were working on replacing out several 58mm anchor wires.
The injured person was walking behind an anchor winch which had a single turn of wire remaining on it. The vessel moved off the quay. Tension came on the wire, which was connected to a spooler ashore.
The stoppers in use failed, and the wire end pulled free of the already loosened clamps, whipping over the drum. He was struck across the shoulders/lower neck and suffered several skull fractures when he was pushed into an adjacent bulkhead by the impact, before falling to the deck semi-conscious.
- A generic ‘mooring operations’ risk assessment was being used. Toolbox Talks had been conducted and documented, but these were based around a clearly inadequate risk assessment (and nobody questioned it during the TBT);
- The stopper arrangement was inadequate. Wires must only ever be stoppered to a suitable strong point using chain stoppers, as detailed in the Code of safe working practices for merchant seafarers (COSWP) 2021;
- Safety chains had not been deployed behind the winch. At that stage of the operation, there was a ‘Line of Fire’ hazard (an alternative route would only have taken about twenty seconds more);
- Insufficient attention was being paid to the tension on the wire by the spooler operators;
- Perceived time pressures and fatigue may also have been factors.
- More thorough planning and more thorough risk assessment would have eliminated most of the several factors which contributed to this incident.
- Adequate time and resources should be allowed in operational plans to allow for effective risk assessment; both vessel crew, project crew and shore-based management have responsibilities in this respect.