Management of simultaneous operations during demobilisation

A member has reported a serious incident onboard a barge during demobilisation in port.

During the demobilisation, a member of the crew undertaking ‘routine’ disconnection of cables on deck was hit by a steel beam dislodged by operations that were taking place overhead on a higher deck. The steel beam was dislodged by an object being lifted. The person received very severe injuries resulting in a medical evacuation and long-term hospitalisation.

The investigation team noted the following:

  • Owing to the layout of the site, the crane driver, banksman and rigger could not see the crew member working on the deck below;
  • An unexplained sideways movement of the lifted object touched the beam, which had been removed from the structure and was not secured, causing it to fall on to the crew member eight metres below.

The company involved recommended that procedures for managing activities during demobilisation should properly specify:

  • lines of communication;
  • planning;
  • risk assessments and hazard identification;
  • work force involvement;
  • management of change.