Warehousing company fined £166,000 and the director jailed for twelve months
1st September 2016
Construction firm fined £144,000
2nd September 2016

MAIB report published on fire in the engine room the Arco Avon

This reports the Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB)’s investigation into a fire in the engine room of the dredger Arco Avon while the vessel was loading a sand cargo approximately twelve miles off Great Yarmouth, UK. The fire claimed the life of the vessel’s third engineer, who was attempting to repair a failed fuel pipe when fuel, under pressure in the pipe, ignited.

Safety Issues

  • The third engineer’s decision to act autonomously without informing either the Officer of the Watch was contrary to documented standing orders but was commensurate with the onboard culture of regular lone working
  • The fact that sparks generated by using fixed and portable angle grinders produce a hot work hazard is not currently acknowledged in marine industry guidance
  • The contents of International Maritime Organization (IMO) circular MSC. 1/Circ.1321, which recommends a 6 monthly inspection of fuel system pipework to be included in a vessel’s SMS, had not been formally promulgated to the UK shipping industry
  • Merchant Shipping Notices relating to personal protective equipment in engine rooms are inadequate, suggesting that cotton garments could provide fire protection
  • The Ship Captain’s medical guide gave confusing and inconsistent advice on the treatment of serious burns