Environmental factors and ineffective evasive maneuvers led to 2020 dock collision involving bulk carrier


Quebec City, Quebec, February 9, 2022 – In its investigation report (M20C0145) released today, the Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) concluded that a combination of environmental factors and maneuvers ineffective avoidance led the bulk carrier CSL Tadoussac to crash into the Port of Quebec wharf in 2020.

On June 10, 2020, the CSL Tadoussac was berthed under the conduct of a pilot in the port of Quebec, Quebec, when the vessel struck the berth and was subsequently damaged. There were no injuries or pollution.

The investigation revealed that as the vessel approached the berth, the pivoting moment created by the current opposed the turning moment created by the vessel’s rudder and bow thruster, reducing thus the vessel’s rate of gyration. Consequently, the vessel was unable to complete its port turn and was not parallel as it approached the berth. The combination of the vessel’s position from the incomplete turn, combined with current and wind and the vessel’s speed of 3 knots, limited the time available for effective corrective action. The master put the propeller in the full astern position in an attempt to avoid hitting the berth, which further reduced the vessel’s rate of turn. The vessel then approached the berth at a 30 degree angle and struck it.

It was determined that in this occurrence, the captain and pilot had not completed the checklist required for the exchange of essential information between the master and the pilot, which is an important tool to help both parties share all necessary and essential information for safe navigation. Thus, critical information was not shared, and when the vessel approached the berth, there was no discussion of a contingency plan.

The CSL Tadoussac did not have a voyage data recorder (VDR) on board, and regulations did not require one. Therefore, investigators could not confirm engine commands or response times. In the absence of audio recordings from the VDR bridge, the investigation was unable to objectively confirm some of the events leading up to the strike.

Following the occurrence, the Laurentian Pilotage Authority conducted a case study on this occurrence and sent letters to the pilot and master informing them of the study’s findings. A detailed policy on the exchange of information between the captain and the pilot which came into effect shortly after the occurrence was sent to both parties at the same time.

See the survey page

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