The National Transportation Safety Board issued a marine accident report for its investigation into the contact of a bulk carrier’s crane with a grain facility in Convent, Louisiana.
On November 11, 2020, about 0910 local time, the bulk carrier GH Storm Cat’s no. 1 crane boom contacted the Zen-Noh Grain Corporation facility in Convent, Louisiana, while the crew was completing corn-loading operations.
Following the contact, the crane’s cable was cleared of the runway, and the payloader was safely lowered to the pier. Before removing the boom tip from the runway, staff on scene completed an initial damage assessment and took measures to temporarily support the runway.
The crane boom remained in place while the ZGC assessed the damage. It was dislodged the following day by the movement of a passing vessel and then stowed by the crew.
There were no injuries reported, and the vessel’s crane was undamaged. The top structural beam of the runway suffered localized deformation where the boom tip made contact. In addition, angle bracing near the area of impact was damaged.
The corrugated tin sheets that enclosed the runway below the point of impact were also damaged. ZGC estimated the total cost to repair the damage was $481,006. The facility returned to operation at a reduced loading rate on November 15 and increased to their normal loading rate two days later on November 17, 2020.
The NTSB determined the probable cause of the contact was the absence of a dedicated signalman, which led to the ship’s crane operator’s misjudgment of the location of the crane boom while lowering the payloader to the pier.
All ship’s lifts—no matter how routine—should be adequately planned and risk assessed. All personnel involved in the lifting operation should be clearly identified and their duties understood before the start of the lift.
…the report said.