MSC Napoli Design Flaw. Is Your Ship Effected?

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April 22, 2008

MSC Napoli - Under Tow

Via CargoLaw

BBC News tells us:

Accident investigators have identified 12 other ships that could suffer the same failure as the container ship MSC Napoli which was beached off Devon and salvaged live on television with explosives.

Urgent strengthening of the ships has been ordered by the Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB).

The MAIB blamed the MSC Napoli’s design after a series of large waves left a crack in her hull in January last year.

Vertical cracks could be seen in the hull below the waterline on the port and starboard sides, and the ship’s master assessed that the vessel had “broken her back.”

Napoli hullA “wall of oily water” shot through the cracked hull of the ship before it was safely abandoned, the report said.

The hull failure was due to “lack of buckling strength in the engine room region,” said the MAIB report.

More than 1,500 similar ships were screened following the incident, of which 12 unidentified ships required strengthening work “to bring them up to acceptable safety standards,” said the report.

Stephen Meyer, chief inspector of the MAIB said: “The MAIB has worked closely with the world’s leading classification societies to identify any other vessels that may have the same design flaw as the MSC Napoli. Continue Reading…

You can view the Full MAIB report courtesy of the BBC  HERE.

Early last week the BBC also told us of the operation to recycle the ship:

Now the front section of the MSC Napoli is two weeks away from the smelters’.

The firm that built the Titanic – Harland and Wolff – landed the task of dismantling the cargo ship, which had to be beached on the Devon coast.

At the time there were incredible scenes of people rushing to the beach to take advantage of the unexpected bounty of the sea, in the shape of containers of motorcycles and other goods washed ashore.

The Belfast shipyard became one of the benefactors of the sad destruction of the ocean-going behemoth, keeping 80 pairs of hands busy at the yard.

It has been an interesting assignment for the crews, an estimated five cubic tonnes of waste oil needing removal became an actual 100 tonnes, adding to the workload of staff.

Now the cutting up of the superstructure is nearing completion and is expected to end up leaving 60,000 tonnes of ship-building grade steel, with the exception of one piece that was auctioned off for the BBC’s Children in Need charity. Continue Reading…

They also have photos of the scrapping operation HERE.

msc-napoli, bow section under tow

Finally, Maritime Accident Casebook shares with us MSC Napoli Crew Knew The Drill, they write:

“It was evident during the investigation that the master had placed a great deal of emphasis on the importance of safety drills and the maintenance of lifesaving equipment, and that the preparation and lowering of lifeboats had been well-practiced in accordance with company policy.”

No-one was hurt during the evacuation from the ship, and that may be owed to the seriousness with which the master took safety procedures and drills.

The abandon ship did not go without a hitch, “the crewman sitting nearest the forward painter release could not pull the release pin sufficiently far to allow the painter to disengage. He was squeezed between two other crew and his movement was restricted by his immersion suit. The painter was eventually cut by the chief engineer, who had a knife, and was able to reach the painter via the lifeboat’s forward hatch.” Continue Reading…

Here is the ship arriving in Belfast:


Here is the underwater survey on the damaged section of the ship:

Here is the MSC Napoli in Photo:

For our previous related discussion click on our MSC Napoli tag.

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