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Step change: cargo operations offshore causing damage

UK Step Change in Safety has published a safety alert regarding a number of incidents which have taken place during cargo operations offshore causing damage to vessels, the cargo, and/or the offshore installation crane.

The incidents included:

  • A CCU was being back loaded from an installation when it hit a container already back loaded. The impact on the CCU caused it to then swing into a safe haven where it caught on the anti-snag bar and damaged the bar;
  • A drill pipe back loaded from an installation swung inside a safe haven doorway, the lifting slings broke and the pipe fell overboard (illustrated below)
  • A PSV without anti snag bars and no ‘tiger stripe’ highlighting the cargo rail tops suffered several snagging incidents, causing damage to the vessel, cargo and offshore crane.

Step Change highlighted the following good practice guidance:

  • Vessel Masters should satisfy themselves that all potential cargo snagging areas on the cargo deck have cargo snag bars fitted. The anti-snag bars should be regularly inspected to ensure they remain ‘fit for purpose’;
  • Vessel Masters should satisfy themselves that the cargo top rails are sufficiently highlighted to ensure crane operators looking down from height can easily identify potential snagging areas;
  • Offshore crane operators should be made fully aware of the significance of the highlighted areas on the vessels top cargo rails and when/where possible avoid loading small CCU’s against these areas.

A Safety Moment prepared by Step Change can be seen at

Safety Event

Published: 28 March 2017
Download: IMCA SF 07/17

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