Four sailors have lost their lives of electrocution on a lunch cruise owing to negligence and an absence of appropriate safety measures by the ship’s captain and owner.
The Court of Misdemeanours and Violations convicted the ship’s captain and its owner for their negligence, ordering imprisonment for up to six months, and also paid legal blood money to the families of the ones who lost their lives.
The events occurred last June when an unforeseen malfunction was observed onboard a lunch cruise sailing from Al Hamriyah Port based in Dubai. When the cruise eventually set sail, one of the maintenance officials mentioned he got a signal to head back to the port owing to a defect.
The ship returned to the port. When it stopped, one of the ship’s sailors could be seen attempting to save one more inside the water tank. He said that the ship’s assistant captain had asked him and three other colleagues to get rid of the water inside the tank, as there was a slope in one of the corners. The sailors went ahead to do so with a water pump.
The four sailors and the assistant captain reportedly entered the tank. As one started operating the pump after connecting it to electricity, the men began experiencing electrocution.
The assistant captain onboard attempted to save his colleagues. However, as there were no systems to cut off the electricity, three colleagues lost their lives while he tried keeping them, with the fourth losing his life only some minutes later.
Per the case file, the ship’s captain and the owner were summoned, with the first reportedly admitting that he was not present on board when the incident took place. The forensic laboratory report highlighted that the ship captain’s negligence and absence during the cruise resulted in the accident. The report indicated that the owner had not ensured adequate safety measures for sailors, and the water pump on the vessel was also unfit for use.
References: Khaleej Times