AIS Animation Shows Collision of Baltic Breeze Car Carrier and Mar de Marin

Rob Almeida
Total Views: 5
April 1, 2014

The following video shows the specific course changes leading to the collision this morning between the Baltic Breeze car carrier and the fishing vessel Mar de Marin.

Considering the existence of this video, it’s clear that both vessels were transmitting their AIS position, and that both vessels were aware of each other prior to the collision.

Due to the fact both vessels were approaching each other on reciprocal, or nearly reciprocal courses, COLREGS Rule 14 applies:

(a) When two power-driven vessels are meeting on reciprocal or nearly reciprocal courses so as to involve risk of collision each shall alter her course to starboard so that each shall pass on the port side of the other.

(b) Such a situation shall be deemed to exist when a vessel sees the other ahead or nearly ahead and by night she could see the masthead lights of the other in a line or nearly in a line and/or both sidelights and by day she observes the corresponding aspect of the other vessel.

(c) When a vessel is in any doubt as to whether such a situation exists she shall assume that it does exist and act accordingly.

Looking at the animation, it seems apparent that the Mar de Marin incorrectly altered course to port resulting in the collision. The animation does not show the speeds of each vessel however. If there was any doubt as to the intentions of the Mar de Marin on behalf of the watchstander(s) on board the Baltic Breeze, they should have reduced speed – which they may very well have done.

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