Also from the MSF
Contractors Working on Board
A serious incident occurred while a maintenance contractor was using a gantry crane above a ship’s main engine.
The crane track was fitted with removable end stop pins which allowed the tracks to be arranged in different configurations. The contractor failed to fit the stop pin correctly and this allowed the crane to roll off the end of the track, trapping his hand and causing serious injury. The direct cause of the incident was identified as incorrect fitting of the stop pin.
The investigation has highlighted the need to ensure that contractors are adequately controlled and monitored whilst working on vessels. The first step in the process is to ensure that the selected contractors are competent to carry out the work required. It is essential that correct procedures are followed, ensuring that proper contractor familiarisation is provided in accordance with the company’s safety management procedures and that the Authority to Work and Permit to Work documentation is completed as required. Risk assessments must be completed and safe systems of work established and agreed before work is allowed to commence.
A further issue which must be borne in mind is that where a contractor is using ship’s equipment, it must be ensured that the equipment is suitable for the purpose for which it is intended, is properly maintained and that the contractor is adequately instructed in its operation before use.