Safety concerns have been raised over loopholes in maritime legislation which is allowing investigations into major incidents in Scotland’s seas to be controlled by foreign nation states thousands of miles away, reports the Herald.
Lack of enforcement and protection in Scottish waters
Calls have been made for a review of the arrangements as fears rise over a lack of enforcement and protection in Scottish waters because jurisdiction for foreign drilling vessels and rigs serving the oil and gas and growing offshore wind farm industries lies overseas.
Local concerns have surfaced into one incident that threatened a “disaster” near the Hunterston B nuclear plant two years ago which were led by the authorities in the Republic of the Marshall Islands – over 8000 miles away. The probe came after the 748ft long drill ship Valaris DS4 with eight crew aboard broke from its mooring and began to drift without power amidst high winds.
Absence of port regulations
Locals told the Herald on Sunday at the time it was only a “miracle” that prevented this from being “an absolute catastrophe with multiple loss of life” near the Hunterston B nuclear plant.
It emerged that authorities in the Republic of the Marshall Islands investigated found that was a mooring failure and made a list of recommendations, without, it said, apportioning blame or liability. But it raised concerns that there was a “lack of comprehensive flag state regulations intended to ensure the safety and security” of laid-up vessels in ports and harbours.
They also found a lack of requirements for Marshall Islands-registered vessels in lay-up to undergo inspections or other types of oversight to ensure they do not pose a safety or security hazard.
It found an absence of port regulations intended to ensure the safety of security of ships laid up in ports and harbours in the UK.
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Source: The Herald