Saipem 7000 back in stable state after crane accident

Semi-submersible pipelay crane vessel Saipem 7000 (IMO 8501567) had been returned to a stable and safe condition in Åmøyfjorden, north of Stavanger, Norway, following an incident during the morning of Thursday April 14th that caused it to list heavily

Italy-based contractor Saipem said in a release on Thursday evening that the incident occurred while the 198 m long vessel was performing a planned five-year load test of the main cranes.

“Further to a preliminary assessment, it would appear that the main block wire broke during the test lifting operation and the testing load (two cargo barges) with the main block were released into the water. The unit, after an initial tilting caused by the load release, promptly returned in a stable position and safe condition. A crane assessment is ongoing”.

There were 275 people on board when the incident occurred. All were evacuated safely and without injury.

According to Norway’s central rescue centre, HRS Sor-Norge, barges next to the crane vessel sustained significant damage and capsized.

Norwegian media reported eyewitnesses hearing loud bangs at around 10:00 local time on Thursday, shortly before the ship began to tilt.