Port arrival and berthing mishaps (4)

Port arrival and berthing mishaps (4)

This report should be read in conjunction with Port arrival and berthing mishaps (1), (2) and (3)


CHIRP has received several reports relating to  port  arrival  and  berthing.  The  following  reports cover communication failings, maintenance issues, and operational concerns.

What the Reporter told us (4):

On approach to the port whilst under pilotage, a vessel experienced a blackout approximately two miles NE of the inlet leading to the final port approach. The main engine stopped,  although  steerage  and  emergency  electrical power was maintained. The vessel was proceeding inward bound with a speed of 5 knots. Both anchors were cleared away ready for use. The generators were restarted after two minutes, and  all  electrical  power  and  systems  brought back online. Main engine and bow thruster were tested at   this time. In consultation with the master, it was agreed to resume the approach. The master advised the pilot that the reason for the blackout was the starting of an additional generator.  The  vessel  then  proceeded  to  berth  without further incident.

CHIRP Comment:

The Maritime Advisory Board mentioned the following lessons  to  prevent reoccurrence;

  • Prior to standby it should be ensured that adequate electrical power is available with additional plant engaged as necessary before the pilot boarding ground is reached, to cover all anticipated operations e.g. electro hydraulic winches, bow thruster, lighting, main engine.
  • Anchors should have been cleared beforehand – vessel only two miles off the beach.
  • Are the pre-arrival checks appropriate ‚Äď are they implemented correctly, who checks, and are they confirmed by the company? If the answer is in the negative, managers should then ask, why? (Potential management failings)
  • Some companies conduct machinery drills, which are useful for training staff to respond to such incidents.
  • The incident identifies potential causal factors including but not limited to;
    • Latent Failures – Design, Hardware, Maintenance Management, Procedures, Training.
    • Human Factors – Complacency, Local Practices, Pressure, Fatigue, Situation Awareness.


Report Ends.