EHS & Waste Management

Ferry Safety – Lashing of Vehicles in Adverse Weather Conditions

By January 21, 2020 No Comments

Improper Consideration of Weather Forecast Leads to Severe Damage of Vehicles endangering Ferry Safety.

The cargo shift and damage to vehicles on board the P&O’s ferry European Causeway in December 2018 could have been avoided if the crew had considered the forecast weather conditions when setting the course of the ship, MAIB investigation into ferry safety shows.

The ro-ro passenger ferry rolled heavily in very rough seas and very high winds during its voyage from Larne, Northern Ireland to Cairnryan, Scotland.

The violent motion caused several freight vehicles to shift and nine to topple over. This resulted in damage to 22 vehicles, some damaged severely, the investigation findings show.

At least six freight vehicle drivers had remained in their cabs on the vehicle decks during the crossing and four were found in cabs of vehicles that had toppled over.

One driver was trapped and had to be freed by the emergency services when the ship arrived in Cairnryan.

The accident occurred because the ferry rolled over 30° in storm conditions and its cargo had not been adequately secured.

The MAIB investigation found that if the route had been adjusted sufficiently to mitigate the effects of the sea conditions the likelihood of severe rolling would have been reduced and the ferry safety would have been improved.

Furthermore, a key item with regards to ferry safety is that cargo lashings that are applied should be sufficient for the forecasted weather conditions, and the ship’s approved cargo securing manual should also provide guidance to ship’s staff in the key area of ferry safety.

Finally, drivers remaining in their vehicles during the ferry’s passage, in contravention of international regulations and company policy was not uncommon and is an industry-wide issue.

“Drivers remaining in their vehicles not only put themselves at risk, they place at risk other passengers, and anyone who has to rescue them. Perhaps, most importantly, crucial emergency responses, such as to a fire, can be delayed until all passengers are accounted for,” the Chief Inspector of Marine Accidents, Andrew Moll, said.

“I have written to the senior management of short sea ferry companies around the United Kingdom to further highlight the dangers posed by freight drivers remaining on vehicle decks, and to encourage them to take a collective approach to eliminate this dangerous practice.

“In addition to the work that they have already undertaken, we have recommended that P&O Ferries Ltd enhance their safety management system, to provide ship’s crew with better guidance concerning the stowage and lashing of freight vehicles in adverse weather conditions.”


IMEC Technologies provides Safety Management Software to increase worker safety and aid compliance. IMEC’s Safety Management Software will manage inspections and audits, provides hazard identificationincident reporting, management of corrective and preventative actions from generation to closure. IMEC provides lock out tag out software solutions that will allow users to create lockout tagout procedures using an intuitive Mobile App and Manage Lockout Tagout Procedures, also the Review and Execution of those Lockout Tagout Procedures using the Mobile App. Annual Lockout Tagout Procedures audits are conducted using a Mobile App. The Mobile Inspection App allow users to perform inspections and audits, for example the system can be used as a Fire Extinguisher Barcode Inspection Software system to manage monthly fire extinguisher inspections and general fire safety inspections and also to record safety observations and manage corrective actions, anywhere and anytime. The solution can be used as a fire extinguisher barcode inspection software system or life safety inspection system to aid compliance in Higher Education, Healthcare, Industrial and Commercial Organizations. Benefits from a Fire Extinguisher Barcode System include the elimination of paperwork and reducing the burden of compliance with regulations such as NFPA, The Joint Commission. The Incident Reporting App allows users to easily and quickly report incidents, hazards and near-misses, these are then sent to the appropriate people for action and are managed to closure.  Web Apps provide features such as, setup, management, scheduling tools, analysis, reporting and dashboards etc with the ability to report incidents to government bodies such as OSHA and RIDDORHazMat T&T is a hazardous waste management software solution designed for Environmental Service Companies and companies who generate a large quantity of hazardous waste. The solution tracks hazardous waste from cradle to grave aiding compliance, providing accurate waste inventory, increasing waste handling efficiency, reducing risk and also helps manage waste costs. HazMat T&T Hazardous Waste Management Software can be deployed in a number of deployment scenarios, from Large Hazardous Waste Generators, tracking their hazardous waste at their site to Environmental Service and Waste Management Companies using it track and manage hazardous waste at transfer and disposal sites. For more information visit our website