A MARINE Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB) report into the death of a Mowi Scotland assistant manager last year has highlighted a number of serious failings in work practices at the site.
The victim, Clive Hendry, drowned after falling into the water from a feed barge access ladder during a boat transfer on the afternoon of February 18th 2020.
He was attempting to climb onto the barge from the workboat Beinn Na Caillich and fell into the water after being crushed between the boat and the barge.
The MAIB said a fish farm technician attempted to stop the assistant manager from entering the water by holding onto the back of his personal flotation device and oilskin jacket, but the severely injured casualty slipped out of them.
The report found: “The investigation concluded that the conduct of the boat transfer had not been properly planned or briefed and was not adequately controlled.
“A risk assessment for the transfer of personnel to and from the fish farm installations had not been carried out and a documented safe system of work had not been produced.
“Recommendations have been made to the vessel and fish farm owner, Mowi (Scotland) Ltd, to apply The Workboat Code Edition 2 to its fleet and implement a safety management system that complies with the principles of the International Safety Management Code. “
The report concludes: “A recommendation to ensure that appropriate marine expertise is present or provided to the senior management team to oversee the safety of its vessels and marine operations has also been made to the owner.
The investigation concluded that the conduct of the boat transfer had not been properly planned or briefed and was not adequately supervised or controlled and the MAIB has highlighted the following failings:-
· the transfer of personnel by workboat had not been properly risk assessed, and safe systems of work had not been put in place
· the crew on board Beinn Na Caillich were not fully prepared to deal with the emergency situation. They had not conducted regular ‘manoverboard recovery drills’ and were not familiar with the vessel’s recovery equipment
· the workboat and fish farm owner of Beinn Na Caillich did not have an effective marine safety management system and lacked staff with the experience to oversee its marine operations.
A Mowi spokesperson told Fish Farmer Magazine today: “Clive had been a truly valued member of our team for 12 years and we all continue to be deeply affected by his death.
“Our sympathies go to Clive’s family, friends and colleagues. As detailed in the MAIB accident report, preventative actions were immediately implemented and we are now reviewing the learnings from this report that include two recommendations made by the MAIB.”