6th July 2006

This accident happened during pre ISM days.

The ship was a tanker in the lightering service on the U.S.Coast. The busy schedule did not allow maintenance of equipment. Vessel was fitted with two Sulzer generators and one turbo alternator which was not working. So both diesel generators were running continuously for cargo operations arrival / departure port, and arrival / departure double banking.

No 2 generator had the problem of fuel oil mixing with lube oil in crank case. The watch keeping system was 12on/ 12off for 3rd engineer and 4th engineer without motorman or oiler. The oiler was on day work with 2nd engineer on maintenance work.

Next morning the 2nd engineer wanted to quickly to give generator for cargo operation and was pressed for time. He gave an air kick to the generator causing the L.O to splash on the exhaust manifold of the running generator and causing a fire.

Flaps and dampers did not close immediately. Emergency generator tripped as it had a hole in the radiator. The vessel was unable to release foam to fight the fire. The fire died slowly on its own.