3/5/2019: Findings of Concern released – “Impacts of Modifications, Alterations, and Weight Creep on Stability”

The Office of Investigations and Casualty Analysis issued Findings of Concern 006-19, “Impacts of Modifications, Alterations, and Weight Creep on Stability,” after the fishing vessel Destination marine board of investigation concluded that unsafe stability conditions, combined with an open deck hatch and a fatigued crew, were the primary factors leading to the tragedy.


12/26/2018: Third party oversight – one year after the commandant’s Final Action Memo on the El Faro sinking

On Dec. 22, 2017, the commandant of the Coast Guard released the Final Action Memo for the Report of the Marine Board of Investigation into the sinking of the steam ship El Faro and the loss of its 33 crewmembers. In the FAM, the commandant signaled the Coast Guard’s commitment to making improvements to prevent similar marine casualties. This post highlights the actions taken to address gaps in third party oversight and the Alternate Compliance Program in the year since the FAM was released.


8/1/2018: Marine Safety Information Bulletin 06-18, Amphibious Passenger Vessel Operations

A Coast Guard Marine Board of Investigation has been convened and will conduct a thorough and comprehensive investigation to determine casual factors that contributed to the loss of the Stretch Duck 07. However, the Coast Guard and amphibious passenger vessel industry do not have to delay until the MBI has completed their investigation before taking a proactive approach toward the safety of the vessels and their passengers.


8/1/2018: Commandant convenes marine board of investigation into loss of Stretch Duck 07

The marine board consists of five members who will investigate all aspects of the casualty including, but not limited to, the pre-accident historical events relating to the accident, the regulatory compliance of Stretch Duck 07, crewmember duties and qualifications, weather conditions and reporting, and Coast Guard oversight.


10/1/2017: Coast Guard releases Report of Investigation into loss of 33 mariners and U.S. cargo ship, El Faro

The MBI concluded that the primary cause of the casualty was the decision to navigate El Faro too close to the path of Hurricane Joaquin. As the MBI expanded the investigation to explore other contributing factors, it uncovered evidence of an ineffective safety management system within the operating company, and failures by both the Coast Guard delegated representative and the Coast Guard itself to provide effective oversight of the vessel’s compliance with safety regulations.


8/4/2017: Witness schedule for F/V Destination marine board of investigation set

This post provides information on the witness testimony schedule and options for remote public viewing of the fishing vessel Destination marine board of investigation (MBI). The hearing session will focus on weather and human factors as well as the mechanical state and stability of the vessel before and during its final voyage.


7/21/2017: NOAA locates f/v Destination wreckage, Coast Guard hearing set for August

Two NOAA ships, en route to scientific missions in Alaskan waters, helped locate the missing fishing vessel Destination at the request of the Coast Guard Marine Board of Investigation. The Destination and its six crew members were lost Feb. 11, 2017, while fishing for Opilio crab (snow crab) northwest of St. George, Alaska.


2/28/2017: F/V Destination marine board of investigation convenes

The U.S. Coast Guard has convened a Marine Board of Investigation into the loss of F/V Destination and its six crewmembers. A Marine Board of Investigation is the highest level of investigation in the Coast Guard.


10/3/2016: Remembering El Faro

It has been one year since the tragic loss of the cargo ship El Faro and her 33 crew members. I encourage everyone in the maritime community to take a few moments to remember them, and reflect on the hazards faced by all seafarers. This is an extremely difficult milestone for the families and loved ones. My thoughts continue to be with them.


9/7/2016: El Faro Marine Board of Investigation – Transcripts available from first public hearing

The Coast Guard posted a notice announcing the availability of transcripts from the first hearing of the El Faro Marine Board of Investigation (MBI), held in February 2016.


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