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Near miss: load lifted without notice putting crew in the line of fire

What happened

During cargo operation at an offshore installation, the deck foreman on the installation noticed that a sling was twisted while starting to heave up a cargo. An AB on deck was asked to remove the twist, when the crane operator started lifting the load without proper notice, which placed the AB between the cargo and a 20’ container. This could have resulted in a fatality or severe injury. The operation was stopped immediately; there were no injuries.

What went wrong

  • The crane operator had poor visibility on deck;
  • Poor communication:
    • The deck foreman on the offshore installation rejected the officer of the watch’s request  to disconnect the crane before sending the AB;
    • Nothing was done to secure the safety of the AB in charge of untwisting the sling;
    • The crane operator started to lift with no instructions nor signal.

Lessons learned

  • When the situation deteriorates, STOP. Become extra vigilant, remain aware of what is going on around you, ensure good communication between all stakeholders;
  • Ensure clear deck policies and stop work policies are followed;
  • Don’t take short cuts, don’t hurry, don’t assume that everything is OK.

Members may wish to refer to

Safety Event

Published: 21 December 2022
Download: IMCA SF 29/22

Relevant life-saving rules:
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