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Britannia P&I Club: double fatality resulting from confined space entry

The Britannia P&I Club, as part of their BSAFE campaign have published a case study into a double fatality resulting from confined or enclosed space entry. 

What happened

 A bulk carrier was loading logs, and the Chief Officer entered a cargo hold which contained logs. Upon entry he rapidly lost consciousness and fell from the entrance ladder.  A fellow crew member who tried to rescue the Chief Officer suffered the same fate. They were later both pronounced dead due to asphyxia.

 It had been noted that a rubber seal on the hold access door needed replacing. The Chief Officer descended into the cargo hold and after only a few steps suddenly fell onto the logs below.  The bosun immediately alerted fellow crew members standing at the gangway, then made his way to the aft mooring station to get a rope. The Second Officer was at the gangway and alerted the master by radio. He then fetched a breathing apparatus (BA) set and also oxygen from the ship’s hospital.  An Able Seaman, having alerted the Third Officer, returned to the hold and started to climb down into the hold with another crew member about to follow. The Bosun managed to prevent the latter from entering but the Able Seaman collapsed and fell.

The two men were retrieved from the hold, not without some difficulty, but both were pronounced dead at the scene. 

Photo: Britannia P&I Club

Members can review further information as follows:

Safety Event

Published: 20 May 2021
Download: IMCA SF 14/21

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