Skip to content

Metrex M3610 multimeter incident

We have recently learned of an incident using a multimeter whilst a technician was investigating the 440 volt supply to an ROV. When he placed the instrument test lead across the 440v terminals, the instrument immediately short-circuited, causing him burns and eye-flash.

The 440v supply to the ROV shut down and interrupted the electrical supply to the drilling operation, since the main fuse blew in the control room.

The technician was testing for a 440v supply on the control circuit of the supply alternator for the ROV. The instrument arced between the terminal inputs of the meter. The probes of the instrument were placed approximately 4cm apart when the instrument flashed over. There was no damage to the probes and the instrument was set on the correct scale.

On investigation it was found that the instrument had been contaminated internally with seawater and an oily substance.

Safety Event

Published: 1 January 2000
Download: IMCA SF 01/00

IMCA Safety Flashes
Submit a Report

IMCA Safety Flashes summarise key safety matters and incidents, allowing lessons to be more easily learnt for the benefit of all. The effectiveness of the IMCA Safety Flash system depends on Members sharing information and so avoiding repeat incidents. Please consider adding [email protected] to your internal distribution list for safety alerts or manually submitting information on incidents you consider may be relevant. All information is anonymised or sanitised, as appropriate.

IMCA’s store terms and conditions ( apply to all downloads from IMCA’s website, including this document.

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.