Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Cosco Busan coverage - One year later

It has been a year since the Cosco Busun struck the Oakland Bay Bridge. There has been some coverage on line regarding the Cosco Busan. The crew is still be held as material witnesses. - Forbes Article here.

A pilot commissioners' board in San Francisco found that pilot error was a factor in the incident - From Mercury News
The mistakes included allowing the ship to sail in heavy fog, failing to resolve concerns with the ship's radar system and an electronic chart system, and proceeding at an unsafe speed.

Another error, the report said, was failing to take into account communication difficulties with the Chinese crew, who had limited English-speaking abilities.
Robin Storm has a good summary of the incident from the SFGate here.

There have been congressional hearings, and several investigations. A report by the National Transportation Safety Board and the Coast Guard into the cause of the accident is due in January.

gcaptain has three interesting regarding the Cosco Busan, two by pilot Capt John Denham and one by Capt. John Konrad.

Deconstructing The Cosco Busan Incident - More On Accidents And Why - by John Denham

John Denham points out the importance of BRM:
"if the BRM is not functional the vessel is not seaworthy”
The Cosco Busan - A Failure in xx"x Resource Management - by Captain John Konrad

John points out both the pilot and the capt made errors but in addition points to the individual who authorized changing the entire crew of the vessel.

John Cota made two crucial errors; a willingness to proceed (even rush) under adverse conditions and refusal to fully utilize resources available to him, namely electronic charting systems. Captain Sun also made two critical mistakes; acceptance of the position and willingness to proceed on the day of the incident. The high level of proficiency and low incident rate of our nations pilots helps to explain Cota’s decision and Captain Sun’s trust of his decision to proceed that morning but does not explain either’s willingness to proceed knowing one important fact; the entire vessel crew was replaced just two weeks prior.

Feedback - A failure in XXX Resource Management - by John Denham

A vessel found undermanned, crewed with unqualified persons or lacking operational proficiency is unseaworthy and local authority, as a matter of public policy, should be responsible to detain it.

It will be interesting to see the NTSB and US Coast Guard report in particular the role of fatigue with regards to the ship's crew


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