On July 19, 2018, the 'Stretch Duck 07' experienced a storm and sank near Table Rock Lake, Missouri, with 17 people dying. A Coast Guard Marine Board of Investigation (MBI) has been established and will conduct an investigation to determine casual factors that contributed to this tragic incident.
However, the US Coast Guard and amphibious passenger vessel industry do not have to delay until the MBI has completed their investigation before taking action. Under this, USCG recommends all Officers in Charge, Marine Inspection (OCMI), owners, operators, and masters to immediately complete the following:
- Review the routes and conditions listed on the vessel’s Certificate of Inspection (COI). Ensure crews are familiar with and clearly aware of their obligations. Additionally, ensure everyone is aware of all operational limitations of each vessel.
- Review the company’s operations manual recommended by Navigation and Vessel Inspection Circular (NVIC) No. 1-01. If there is currently no operations manual, it is highly recommended that one be developed. Additionally, owners and operators may wish to incorporate programs and procedures characteristic of a Safety Management System to effectively mitigate risk and establish a culture of continuous improvement.
- Conduct crew training and drills in accordance with the vessel’s Emergency Response Plans with a specific focus on: crew duties and responsibilities, inclement weather monitoring and response, flooding, methods and locations for beaching, and vessel evacuations.
- Take a proactive approach to vessel oversight to include frequent communications with the master for hazard monitoring, to include changes in weather conditions.