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2017/08

Report on marine accident - Frøy Viking, LG6332, foundered in Edøyfjorden 26 August 2016

The work boat Frøy Viking foundered in Edøyfjorden Friday 26 August 2016. Both crew members managed to abandone the ship and was later taken aboard another vessel that arrived at the accident site.

During transit from Hemnefjorden to Kristiansund, the weather conditions deteriorated and the crew experienced ‘some rough seas’. During the final period before the vessel foundered, the waves were crashing over the bow. At one point, the crew discovered that ‘Frøy Viking’ had started listing and that there was water on the starboard side of the deck. The vessel capsized shortly after that.

The Accident Investigation Board Norway (AIBN) believes that the freeing ports in the bulwarks around the foredeck were too small, which led to the foredeck not draining fast enough. The water that had gathered on the foredeck entered the forepeak through a hatch in the forward starboard side of the deck that was not watertight. The reason why the hatch was not watertight was partly its technical design and partly because of lack of maintenance. Because the bulkheads between the engine room and the forepeak were not watertight, the water was able to spread through the vessel and cause increasing listing. The increasing list also caused the aft deck hatch, which was of the same standard as the forward deck hatch, to gradually become exposed to sea on deck. The increasing list also caused the ventilation openings to the engine room to come under water. The openings were situated too low down and there was no way of closing them. This also contributed to the engine room filling up faster and to the accident developing into a total loss situation.

No regulatory requirements had been established for the construction and fitting out of work boats with a length of less than 15 metres when ‘Frøy Viking’ was built in 2011, but new regulations concerning the construction and supervision of small cargo ships were adopted by the Norwegian Maritime Authority on 19 December 2014. For new vessels, the introduction of these regulations meant that the safety issues that were promiment and that led to the foundering of ‘Frøy Viking’ were largely addressed. Existing vessels built in accordance with the Nordic standard for small vessels in professional use (Nordisk Båtstandard – NBS) also meet many of the technical requirements in the new regulations.

The fact that large parts of the regulations were not made applicable to existing vessels means that the safety of small cargo vessels built before the regulations were adopted did not improve in the same way as for new vessels. This is especially the case if the existing vessels do not meet the NBS requirements either. It is uncertain how many or which existing vessels this applies to.

Based on its investigation, the AIBN submits a safety recommendation to the Norwegian Maritime Authority in which it is recommended, in cooperation with the industry, to identify and implement necessary measures to improve the safety of existing small cargo vessels in areas where the Regulations of 19 December 2014 No 1853 on the construction and supervision of small cargo ships have not been given retroactive effect.

After the accident, the shipping company that operated ‘Frøy Viking’ has implemented operational measures, including internal meetings on the topic ‘Safe navigation’ and upgrading of the safety management system. With one exception, all the company’s vessels with a length of less than 15 metres have been subject to inspection by an approved enterprise for the purpose, among other things, of ensuring that the vessels are satisfactorily maintained. The inspections will include the checking of hatch seals.

Safety recommendation

Safety reccomendation MARINE no. 2017/06T

‘Frøy Viking’ foundered on 26 August 2016 as a result of deficiencies in the vessel’s ability to drain water from the deck, its weathertight integrity, watertight compartments and ability to pump out water from the hull. The Regulations of 19 December 2014 No 1853 on the construction and supervision of small cargo ships set out minimum requirements for new vessels in these safety-critical areas, but the requirements have not been made applicable to existing vessels.

The Accident Investigation Board Norway recommends that the Norwegian Maritime Authority, in cooperation with the industry, identify and implement measures to improve the safety of existing small cargo vessels in areas where the Regulations of 19 December 2014 No 1853 on the construction and supervision of small cargo ships have not been given retroactive effect.

Facts

Location Edøyfjorden
Occurrence date 26.08.2016
Accident category Foundering
Area Norwegian Territorial Waters
Name of vessel Frøy Viking
Accident type Capsize
Vessel type Misc. Ship
Register The Norwegian Ship Register

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