Report 6 - During the night of 6 March 1987, moments after...

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During the night of 6 March 1987, moments after leaving the port of Zeebrugge in Belgium in direction of Dover, MS Herald of Free Enterprise, a car and passenger ferry owned by Townsend Thoresen capsized. The disaster had unfolded in just 90 seconds, in calm conditions and shallow water, only 100 yards (91m) from the shore. The disaster resulted in the deaths of 193 passengers and crew members. Most of the victims were trapped inside the ship and died to hypothermia because of the cold water. The rescue efforts of the Belgian Navy limited the numbers of deaths. In general, loading and unloading at Zeebrugge was longer than other ports as its access was possible through a single ramp onto the car deck. Water used to be pumped into the ballast tanks which had for effect to lower the level of the ferry. Inquiries have demonstrated that the ship left port with her bow doors open and leaving the ballast in her tanks. As a consequence, water began to flow onto the car deck and the ferry quickly became unstable. Some have argued that this disaster resulted from problem with safety climate. With the help of the articles ‘Safety climate and safety behavior in the passenger ferry context’ written by Lu and
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This note was uploaded on 10/20/2011 for the course SBE 204 taught by Professor Furneaux during the Spring '11 term at Maastricht.

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Report 6 - During the night of 6 March 1987, moments after...

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