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Dropped object awareness

The MSF has published safety alert 16-19 on dropped object awareness. The contents of the safety alert are based on a submission from one vessel owner.

The issue of dropped objects and potential dropped objects remains a persistent problem within the offshore, renewables and marine contracting industries. This vessel owner noted that during the whole of 2015, they had received 19 dropped or potential dropped object incidents. However, by mid-Q3 2016, the same vessel owner had already received a total of 18 reports – and this increase took place in spite of reduced exposure due to the downturn.

Members may wish to look closely at cargo and loading operations and reiterate that there can be no relaxing of vigilance against complacency. The following pictures are all items from back-loaded cargo and all are over the weight necessary to cause a fatal injury if they were to fall and strike a crew member.

Actions taken/recommendations:

  • Continued observance of the highest standard of good seamanship in remaining well clear of lifts in a safe area until the cargo is landed on the deck and it is clear to approach;
  • All dropped or potential dropped objects should be reported as soon as identified;
  • Continued sharing of lessons and engagement with all stakeholders to encourage proper identification of causes of dropped object incidents.

The full MSF safety alert can be found at Further information on dropped objects is also available from:

IMCA publishes safety promotional material on dropped objects, including a pocket safety card, poster and DVD.

Safety Event

Published: 24 October 2016
Download: IMCA SF 29/16

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IMCA makes every effort to ensure the accuracy and reliability of the data contained in the documents it publishes, but IMCA shall not be liable for any guidance and/or recommendation and/or statement herein contained. The information contained in this document does not fulfil or replace any individual’s or Member's legal, regulatory or other duties or obligations in respect of their operations. Individuals and Members remain solely responsible for the safe, lawful and proper conduct of their operations.