20th July 2006

Vessel was doing tank cleaning & demucking operation prior to dry docking.

On that fateful morning the 4th engineer gave me a call saying 2nd engineer is hurt badly. On reaching the engine room, found 2nd engineer had fallen through the ventilation ducting while trying to repair a holed section. The 2nd engineer had sustained a head injury and was taken to upper deck and later air-lifted by helicopter to hospital for medical care.

The port side ventilation ducting to the engine room, motor & fan had already been removed and landed. There was a section badly holed and temporary repairs needed to be carried out. A ladder was put for man-entry.

The fitter had already complained of inadequate lighting to the 2nd engineer. No safety net had been put around the holed portion, and no safety harness was used for entry.

The fitter had entered with the 2nd engineer overseeing from the outside, and he fell through, and when 2nd engineer entered to check the situation, he too fell through the holed portion into the engine room.

Unfortunately his head hit the IG impeller which had been opened up a few days back and was now lying on the floor plate. The man had fallen from a height of about 10 to 12 ft.

Suffice it to say that if proper safety precautions had been taken the accident could have been easily avoided.