the stability letter - loss of the tug Valour
Interviewing - Mates - Chief Engineers - Designated Duty Engineers - Interviews - Deckhands Able
Bodied Seamen - Tankermen - Dispatchers - QMED - Interviewing
Sinking of Maritrans Tug Valour The stability letter is one of the
most important documents aboard any vessel. Addressed in the
Code of Federal Regulations, it directs the master as to what
may or may not be done in operating the vessel within safe
parameters for maintaining stability. It came into the public light
because the Coast Guard's investigation into the tragic loss
found that the stability letter had not been followed. The
sank in the early morning hours of January 18, 2006 forty miles
off the coast of Wilmington, North Carolina with multiple loss of
life. One of the primary reasons for the sinking was attributed to
the crews pumping ballast to correct a list before trying to find out
the cause of the list. The report also cited the crossover valve
between port and starboard fuel tanks was left open, against
good practice. This enabled fuel to flow from the high tank to the
low tank if the vessel listed.
Source U.S. Coast Guard Final Report Investigating Loss
Source U.S. Coast Guard Final Report Investigating Loss
Source: National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration