Mars Reports 2014

Mars-Report The Nautical Institute has issued Mars Report No. 11 regarding an accident on board in which a crew member headed back down to the tug to help land the load on the deck of the vessel and he then fell feet first to the deck resulting in broken foot.

Some crew were in engaged in moving a washing machine from a barge to the tug. The washing machine was positioned on the port side stern of the barge and the tug stores crane was being used to move the washing machine to the deck of the tug. One crew member was on the controls of the crane while the other two were on the barge securing the washing machine to the crane lifting hook. Once the washing machine was rigged, one crew member headed back down to the tug to help land the load on the deck of the vessel.

He first descended the pigeon holes in the barge to a platform with a ladder approximately 1.5 metres off the deck of the tug. He later stated that there was no rush to get down and that he was taking his time. While stepping down from the platform his right foot slipped on approximately the third step of the platform. He then fell feet first to the deck, and was later diagnosed with broken bones in his right foot.

As part of the investigation the following items were looked at:

  • The platform, steps, and tug deck were found to be in good condition, clean and dry.
  • Decks on the barge were checked for moisture that might have coated the tread of the work boots - no moisture or slick surfaces found.
  • The crew member was wearing all the required PPE including work boots, FRC, hard hat and safety glasses.
  • The crew member's rest hours were checked (from the incident to 96 hours prior) and he was compliant for this period of time.

Mars Report advise masters to hold a safety stand down with their crew to advise them of this injury and generally heighten awareness. Also, crew are to review safety requirements when transiting the notch.

There do not appear to be any unsafe conditions associated with this seemingly innocuous incident. However, it is a good example of how even a fall of less than two metres, in the best of conditions, can have serious consequences. It can be used as an example to sharpen crew awareness and reduce complacency when
undertaking mundane or routine tasks at any height.

View relevant photos by clicking atMars Report 201411 issued by The Nautical Institute

Source: The Nautical Institute/ Mars Report

The Mariners' Alerting and Reporting Scheme (MARS) is primarily a confidential reporting system run by The Nautical Institute to allow full reporting of accidents (and near misses) without fear of identification or litigation.

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