The Philippines has a long history of fatal maritime accidents. This time, SAFETY4SEA focuses on the deadly sinking of the ‘Princess of the Orient’. The ferry sank off Fortune Island, near the provinces of Cavite and Batangas, on September 18, 1998, claiming the lives of 150 people. Extreme weather conditions, along with ‘’erroneous maneuvering of the vessel by the captain’’, were the immediate causes of the accident.
hazardous weather at sea
The Hellenic Coast Guard conducted a rescue operation on Wednesday, December 4, to evacuate 14 crewmembers from the Liberian-flagged general cargo “New Leo” as the vessel was seriously listing, posing great risk for the seafarers onboard.
NTSB issued a Marine Accident Brief on the flooding and sinking of the fishing vessel ‘Aaron & Melissa II’ while 70 nm southeast of Portland, Maine, in November 2018. The key cause of the sinking was a combination of the Captain’s decision to proceed in heavy weather and of a clogged bilge system.
The Captain of the Vietnamese-flagged general cargo ship Toan Phat 68 died after the ship reportedly sank in South China sea, a few nautical miles off the Qui Nhon port in central Vietnam, in the morning hours of Saturday.
In the latest Safety Digest, UK MAIB focuses on the importance of the weather forecasts for the avoidance of relevant accidents; UK MAIB advises that if severe weather is forecast, all options available should be considered and all relevant precautions should be taken to establish the safety of the crew.
Taking lives of over 1,000 people, the sinking of the RoRo ferry Al-Salam Boccaccio 98 remains a good example of study as poor emergency procedures resulted to deaths of over 1,000 people and spurred widespread criticism of the crew, as well as the owner company.
Petty Officer Michael Kelly, a rescue swimmer with the United States Coast Guard, received the 2019 IMO Award for Exceptional Bravery at Sea during this year’s IMO Awards ceremony, on 25 November, after rescuing four survivors from a life raft from a sinking fishing vessel in heavy weather.
IMO and the World Meteorological Organization conducted their first joint Symposium on Extreme Maritime Weather, focusing on the challenging weather conditions and how they affect the shipping industry, where WMO discussed the best practices and enhanced services for safety and risk reduction, emergency response, sustainable shipping practices and greater collection and sharing of ship observations.
Weather charts, also known as surface pressure or synoptic charts, provide useful information on weather and sea conditions. Safe Skipper’s Simon Jollands recommends to mariners to always study weather charts and estimate how the weather is likely to evolve in the area they plan to sail in.
The removal of the Northguider trawler that grounded in early 2019, in a in the Hinlopen Strait, has been postponed for next year as announced by the Norwegian Coastal Administration, as the salvage company found out that the grounded vessel suffered more damage than what they initially expected.
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