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Marine Accident Report - Allision of Passenger Ferry Andrew J. Barberi With St. George Terminal
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Event Summary

Board Meeting : Marine Accident Report - Allision of Passenger Ferry Andrew J. Barberi With St. George Terminal
Washington, DC
4/24/2012 12:00 AM
Staten Island, New York
May 8, 2010
NTSB Number: MAR-12-01
Webcast
NTSB public events are also streamed live via webcast. Webcasts are archived for a period of three months from the time of the meeting. Webcast archives are generally available by the end of the event day for public Meetings, and by the end of the next day for Technical conferences.
 
This is a synopsis from the Safety Board's report and does not include the Board's rationale for the conclusions, probable cause, and safety recommendations. Safety Board staff is currently making final revisions to the report from which the attached conclusions and safety recommendations have been extracted. The final report and pertinent safety recommendation letters will be distributed to recommendation recipients as soon as possible. The attached information is subject to further review and editing.
 

Executive Summary

On Saturday, May 8, 2010, at 0918 eastern daylight time, the passenger ferry Andrew J. Barberi allided with the terminal structure at slip No. 5 at the St. George terminal, Staten Island, after a loss of propulsion control. Eighteen crewmembers, 2 New York City police officers, 2 concessionaires, and 244 passengers were on board. As a result of the allision, 3 passengers sustained serious injuries; 47 passengers, crew, and others reported minor injuries. The damage to the vessel and the terminal structure totaled $182,238.
 

Conclusions

  1. Weather, qualifications of the crew, illegal drug or alcohol use, and personal use of portable electronic devices were not factors in the accident.
  2. The emergency response by the Fire Department of the City of New York and the New York City Police Department was timely and effective.
  3. A solenoid failure in a propulsion control panel on board the Andrew J. Barberi rendered one of the vessel's two propellers unresponsive to propulsion commands from the pilothouse.
  4. The pilothouse crewmembers were unaware of the loss of propulsion control until seconds before the accident, and, as a result, they were unable to take effective action to avoid the allision.
  5. Had the Andrew J. Barberi had an audible and visual alarm to alert the pilothouse crewmembers to the loss of propulsion control, they may have been able to avoid the allision by implementing emergency response procedures prescribed in the New York City Department of Transportation Ferry Division's safety management system.
  6. After the 2003 accident involving the Andrew J. Barberi, the New York City Department of Transportation Ferry Division took a number of steps that improved operational safety, including implementing a safety management system.
  7. The New York City Department of Transportation Ferry Division's safety management system provided specific emergency procedures, which the crew and shoreside personnel performed in a timely and effective manner, and this benefited the passengers.
  8. Implementing safety management systems on all U.S.-flag passenger vessels would further enhance operators' ability to achieve the higher standards of safety that the Coast Guard requires of U.S. oceangoing vessels in international service.
  9. Although the Andrew J. Barberi's pilothouse closed-circuit television captured certain accident-related information, it could not capture, record, and safeguard important detailed data from vessel navigation and control systems, as a voyage data recorder would have.

Probable Cause

The National Transportation Safety Board determines that the probable cause of the Andrew J. Barberi's allision with St. George terminal was a solenoid failure, which caused a loss of propulsion control of one of the vessel's two cycloidal propellers. Contributing to the accident was the propulsion system's lack of a propeller pitch deviation alarm, which was not required by regulation, but which would have alerted the pilothouse crew to the loss of propulsion control and permitted prompt action.
 

Recommendations

To the U.S. Coast Guard:
1. Require new-construction U.S.-flag passenger vessels with controllable pitch propulsion, including cycloidal propulsion, to be equipped with alarms that audibly and visually alert the operator to deviations between the operator's propulsion and steering commands and the actual propeller response.
2. Where technically feasible, require existing U.S.-flag passenger vessels with controllable pitch propulsion, including cycloidal propulsion, to be retrofitted with alarms that audibly and visually alert the operator to deviations between the operator's propulsion and steering commands and the actual propeller response.
3. Require all operators of U.S.-flag passenger vessels to implement safety management systems, taking into account the characteristics, methods of operation, and nature of service of these vessels, and, with respect to ferries, the sizes of the ferry systems within which the vessels operate.
 

Previous Recommendations Reiterated in This Report

To the U.S. Coast Guard:
4. Require installation of voyage data recorders that meet the international performance standard on new ferry vessels. (M-10-5; reiterated)
5. Require installation of voyage data recorders on ferry vessels built before the enactment of voyage data recorder carriage requirements that will record, at a minimum, the same video, audio, and parametric data specified in the International Maritime Organization's performance standard for simplified voyage data recorders. (M-10-6; reiterated)
 

Previous Recommendations Reclassified in This Report

To the U.S. Coast Guard:
6. Seek legislative authority to require all U.S.-flag ferry operators to implement safety management systems, and once obtained, require all U.S.-flag ferry operators to do so. (M-05-6) Safety Recommendation M-05-6 (previously classified "Open-Acceptable Response") is classified "Closed-Superseded" by M-12-XX in section "3.3.2 Lack of SMS on U.S.-Flag Passenger Vessels" in the report.

 


 

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