Uncontrolled movement of retractable gangway

What happened?

During lifting up and securing of a vessel’s retractable gangway, the spring latch of the lifting device disconnected causing an uncontrolled release of the holding wire, and the gangway fell.  The hand-crank of the lifting winch began rotating at high speed causing risk of injury to operating personnel.

The gangway was secured using the vessel’s crane.  There were no injuries.

What went wrong?

  • An unsafe gangway had been provided and requests for repair had not been met with any response;
  • The vessel crew did not use “stop work authority”.

What actions were taken?

  • Inspect all lifting appliances for the gangway;
  • Replace damaged parts – spring latch replaced;
  • Modification to gangway to secure it from possibility of uncontrolled fall.