Karen Danielsen (2)

El VTS en la diana, ¿Quién será el responsable?¿lo será el controlador?¿lo será el Capitán?¿el primero, que ya no está?¿el práctico al que ya no mencionan?¿el puente por ser bajo y poco visible?¿Todos ellos?
Comienza la investigación, de un accidente que podía haber echado abajo el puente como ocurrió en el Sunshine Skyway de Tampa hace unos años.

By Jerry Frank Monday March 07 2005 Lloydslist

DANISH authorities are to probe why the Great Belt Bridge’s warning system failed to raise the alarm before a boxship smashed into the 18km rail and road link.

Investigators will want to identify the cause of the failure, because the system monitors heavy shipping traffic — including more than 2,000 tankers each year.

The Danish-owned and Bahamas-flagged container feeder Karen Danielsen headed off course on Thursday evening and tore into the lower section of the suspension bridge.

Copenhagen owner Rederiet Otto Danielsen said on Friday that a missing chief mate of an all-Croatian 10 man crew had been recovered from the minus-zero Great Belt water, without confirming if he was dead or alive.

The Ministry of Defence’s SØvaernet, responsible for Great Belt shipping surveillance confirmed that the VTS system had failed to pick-up the 3,630 dwt vessel before it passed under the western half of the bridge that links the islands of Funen and Sjaelland.

SØvaernet said that no radio alert was made with the vessel, the alarm system was not activated and a stand-by vessel was not alerted.

The 1985-built container and general cargo vessel sustained major damage to its wheelhouse, foremast, funnel and cranes that were ripped to shreds as it passed in clear conditions beneath the 18 m western section, designed for ships of less than 1,000 dwt.

A Danish Maritime Authority initial report due over the next fortnight will also try to establish why the cargoship on its way from Svendborg to Finland deviated north for 20 minutes into the bridge away from its south-easterly course.

“Our initial impression is that this is a mixture of a failure onboard and the bridge’s alarm system to prevent collisions”, said Danielsen fleet manager JØrn Staureby. “This system was set up to stop supertankers hitting the bridge and something is wrong if a ship is not picked up for 20 minutes.”

The 256 teu vessel’s technical manager is Svendborg-based Nordane and crew management is carried out by Croatia’s Marine Consult.

Danielsen will await a report from hull insurers Trygg Marine before selecting a ship repair facility for the vessel now in Nyborg and establishing the cost of the extensive damage.

The collision is the worst maritime accident for the bridge since it opened in 1997, with 18,000 vessels passing beneath each year and most of the 2,500 tankers sailing to and from Russian oil terminals.

Failure of the DKr50m ($8.9m) VTS system, which costs around DKr17m to operate each year, comes as Denmark along with seven other seaboard neighbour countries on Friday separately submitted to the IMO a much-anticipated proposal to regulate traffic in the western part of the Baltic Sea and tackle fears over increased oil shipments out of Russia.

Claus Christensen of SØvaernet said that human error among the 19 civilian navigators at the Korsor naval base is suspected for the 24-hour VTS system failure. The majority of around 2,500 laden oil tankers that pass through Danish waters each year sail under the eastern part of the Great Belt Bridge.

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