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LTI: Feet trapped in motion compensated telescopic gangway

What happened

A crewman got his feet trapped under the sliding step of an Ampelmann motion compensated telescopic gangway. The incident occurred during the hours of darkness when he was using the gangway to walk from a W2W (‘walk to work’) vessel to a normally unmanned installation. He suffered serious but not life-threatening injuries, resulting in a lost time injury (LTI). The emergency response was activated and he was evacuated to hospital.

What went wrong?

This incident is still in the final stages of investigation.

The following observation has been made:

  • The gap between the sliding step and the fixed part of the gangway on this particular system was sufficiently large to trap the steel toecap of a regularly sized safety shoe/boot.
  • What were the causes of the incident?

  • There was no specific design criteria for the gap between the sliding step and the fixed part of the gangway, nor was there an absolute norm for the monitoring of the gap;
  • There was insufficient lighting on the gangway which resulted in a lack of awareness of the location and movement of the sliding step;
  • The gangway induction video did not generate sufficient awareness regarding the potential hazard of the movement of the sliding step and its associated pinch points.

Lessons learnt

Ampelmann has learnt that despite its systems being designed and tested to be safe, more rigorous standards, controls and checks are required particularly for dealing with the risks associated with the sliding step.
The sliding step is well marked, but the markings are not clearly visible at night. Better lighting would increase awareness of the location of the moving sliding step and its associated pinch points.

Actions taken?

  • Immediate check of the gap has been conducted on all Ampelmann gangways of this sort and, where required, corrective action taken;
  • Reassessment of engineering specification of the gap in production, and implement maintenance procedure for regular monitoring of gap;
  • Improve the existing safety video by increasing the emphasis on the sliding step and the associated pinch points;
  • Increase the night-time visibility of the sliding step on both existing and future systems:
    • retrofit gangway lighting to the existing fleet
    • include gangway lighting on future gangway designs.

Members may wish to refer to the following incidents:

Safety Event

Published: 23 January 2018
Download: IMCA SF 02/18

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