After a voyage the vessel crew found one twist lock pocket cover missing from the aft main deck. The cover had washed out during heavy weather before work began at the drilling rig. The vessel was later informed that the cover had been found in the pocket of a five-foot container which had been offloaded onshore.
This in turn caused a serious high potential dropped object scenario to the crew, shore side workers and the general public.
The vessel crew carried out an investigation with the assistance of the responsible technical superintendent and discovered that the rubber which keeps these deck covers in place were in poor condition which had made them to become loose and be washed out.
Some additional observations were made and listed as contributing to this incident:
- Inadequate inspection
- Inadequate maintenance
- Adverse weather and sea condition
A temporary deck cover was made to remove the tripping hazards created by the missing cover. New covers were ordered and delivered on board.
- Check the condition of the covers on a regular basis
- The inspection of the covers must be added as a job in the Planned Maintenance System on-board
After any heavy weather, the deck crew should visually check the deck and when/if a cover is missing, try to locate the cover before discharging any cargo. This helps prevent the possibility of dropped objects.
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Source: Marine Safety Forum