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Boulder In Net Downed Razor Clam Boat – But Capsize Could Have Been Avoided, Says MCIB

17th December 2015

#MCIB - A large boulder snagged in its dredge net caused a razor clam boat to capsize in Rosslare Harbour earlier this year, in an incident judged to have been "predictable" by investigators.

The Marine Casualty Investigation Board (MCIB) has released its report into the incident on the FV Qui Vadis on 11 February, from which three fishermen were rescued by the quick action of the local lifeboat station and other fishing vessels in the area, as previously reported on Afloat.ie.

It was found that the boat was rolled over by a swell after it was already destabilised by the presence of a 750kg boulder in its net – with the MCIB report adding that this type of dredge fishing carries a "high risk" of fouling gear or picking up heavy objects.

The skipper and two crew were swiftly rescued, but it was noted that none was wearing a personal flotation device as required by fishing vessel regulations.

Further analysis by the MCIB determined that the lack of protection bars at the dredge mouth allowed the large boulder to enter the net, and the lack of restriction on the power of the winch allowed the vessel to lift the boulder to the point where it was dangerously unstable.

The MCIB also noted that while the vessel passed the roll test on its most recent inspection months before, that test "does not give sufficient information on a vessel’s stability" and that "only a full inclining test can establish a vessels dynamic stability".

The MCIB's full report is available to download below. The incident is not to be confused with that relating to a motor yacht with the same name also investigated by the MCIB in 2011.

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