TOILET TRIP LED TO COLLISION
16th May 05
Once when I was working as a Chief Engineer on a General Cargo vessel a collision took place.
Our vessel came out from dry dock around 17.30 hrs. The controls were checked and everything was found satisfactory.
Around 12.30 hrs the next day a big bump was felt. I went to the Engine Room. From the 3rd Engineer who was at work I came to know that when he was standing near the entrance door of ER on the main check he noticed one ship was crossing very near to our forecastle. Then he stopped the main engine and our ship just touched the after part of the other ship. I confirmed the same from the Captain, and the captain further added that there was a big dent on port side.
The ME was restarted and the voyage resumed. Later I came to know from the 2nd officer who was on duty that he went to the toilet and there was no seaman on duty. The moment he came back on the bridge he found a ship crossing very near to our bow. Then he immediately attempted to alter the course but it was too late.
An enquiry later in to the incident pointed to negligence of the second officer. He should have called somebody to relieve him before he left the bridge.