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Mooring: Port operator fined after worker injured by capstan

The HSE has published the following report regarding an injury to a worker during mooring operations for an ocean-going vessel. The incident happened when a three-man team were securing a vessel’s heavy mooring ropes to land in a maritime terminal. One worker suffered a serious injury after his arm became wrapped around a powered capstan.

Investigation found that the port operator had failed to suitably identify and control risk associated with the use of powered capstans at the port. Consequently, there was no safe system of work. Arrangements for instruction, training and supervision of workers using this equipment were found to be inadequate, as were those for audit and monitoring of safety.

Additionally and importantly, the port operator had failed to suitably heed warnings raised by its workers before the incident. Further information can be found at

There is a good deal of training material around regarding mooring incidents. members may wish to refer to the following:

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