Steamship advises members on RoRo safety following fatal Liverpool accident

Steamship Mutual has observed the implications of an accident which took place at the port of Liverpool, England on board a roll-on roll-off ferry during the loading operation of semi-trailers in which a crewmember suffered a fatal crushing injury, reported by the UK’s Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB).

A fatal accident occurred on board the ro-ro cargo ship Clipper Pennant (IMO 9372688) while alongside in Liverpool, England on 20 July 2021.

The accident is currently being investigated by the MAIB and the full report will be published on completion of the MAIB’s work. In the meantime, however, Steamship advised all Members operating roll-on roll-off vessels to take note of the initial findings and safety lessons from the MAIB safety bulletin as follows:

  • Where tractor units are being used to push semi-trailers, safety procedures must be in place to ensure that deck crew are not standing in the vehicle’s path.
  • Review cargo handling procedures to identify the hazards associated with stowage spaces where there may be limited areas for escape.
  • Conduct a specific risk assessment for all such spaces. These spaces should then be marked and, unless appropriate mitigating measures can be put in place, not used.
  • Ensure that onboard safety procedures and crew safety briefings reflect the guidance in COSWP Section 27.6.3.