Person injured by mooring lines

A member has reported an incident in which a person was hit by a wire of a warping winch, causing bruises to both legs. On the port side of a crane barge a hopper barge was moored with a spring and two winch wires. During the loading of the hopper barge, the winch wire crawled up along the bollard (see A on Figures 1 and 2).

During this process an employee wanted to transfer on foot from the hopper barge to the crane barge and stepped over the winch wire, whilst conducting a conversation on a mobile phone, at a point between A and B. At that instant, the winch wire jumped over the bollard (see red arrow) and hit the person’s legs. The person fell over and was able to grab the railing of the crane barge, which prevented a fall between the crane barge and the hopper barge.

Figure 1 -Hopper barge seen from crane barge (mooring line shown in grey and red)
Figure 1 -Hopper barge seen from crane barge (mooring line shown in grey and red)
Figure 2 -Plan view of mooring operation (mooring line shown in blue and red)
Figure 2 -Plan view of mooring operation (mooring line shown in blue and red)

The following lessons were drawn from this incident:

  • Personnel should remain alert and watch their surroundings at all times when working on deck;
  • Do not use mobile telephones while embarking/disembarking;
  • Connect the winch wire only via bollard A (rather than via bollards A and B) to guarantee it is secured and cannot slip over;
  • Transfer between vessels moored alongside one another should be conducted in a safe and controlled manner;
  • Ensure safe walkways on deck are properly marked;
  • Do not stand in loops of wires and ropes.