Officer of ferry sent to prison due to omissions causing death of a fisherman
The 2nd Officer of the "Scottish Viking" was sentenced for his role in the death of a fisherman and has been sent to prison. Pasquale Miccio pleaded guilty to a breach of section 58 of the Merchant Shipping Act 1995 as amended, on March 24, 2016 in the High Court of Justiciary, Glasgow. Ge admitted his actions or omissions were responsible for the death of Daniel McNeil who was a crew member of the fishing vessel "Homeland" on Aug 5, 2010. Miccio was serving as second officer aboard the "Scottish Viking" which was on a regular service between Rosyth and Zeebrugge. He was the navigating officer when the Ferry sailed from Rosyth at 4:30 p.m. At 6:10 p.m., the lookout reported seeing fishing vessels ahead and to starboard and the second officer made a small alteration of course. The lookout continued to point out the proximity of the fishing vessels and at 6:35 p.m., a further slight alteration of course was made. Despite these warnings the second officer made no further alterations of course or speed. The "Homeland" sailed from Eyemouth along with other vessels of the local fishing fleet at around 6 p.m. Joseph McNeil was working on the deck mending a net when, about 30 minutes later, he heard a warning blast from a nearby boat, the Achieve and heard the skipper calling to him on the VHF. He went forward and looked out of his wheelhouse to see the "Scottish Viking" just seconds before it struck. He and his brother managed to clamber onto the wheelhouse roof but the boat went down very quickly. The "Serene y Don" - another local boat - threw Joseph a life ring and pulled him to safety but Daniel could not be found. In the High Court in Edinburgh the judge, his Lordship Lord Bannatyne, on Apr 25, 2016 said that the day had been a dreadful tragedy in that Daniel McNeil had lost his life and his family their son and brother. Miccio as the officer in charge was responsible for the failures and omissions and had failed to take actions that would have prevented the death of the young man. Sentencing him to 12 months in prison, reduced to eight months, the judge said he had taken into account mitigation that there were other contributory factors to the incident and that Miccio had no previous accidents. Captain Bill Bennett, surveyor in charge, for the Maritime & Coastguard Agency said that the case highlighted the need to maintain a proper lookout. He added it also reinforced the need for every vessel to use all available means to determine if a risk of collision exists and to take early positive action to avoid that collision.
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The officer in charge of the "Scottish Viking" was twice warned to change course before a collision with the f/v "Homeland" killing one crew member in August 2010 five miles off St Abbs, near Eyemouth in Berwickshire. A Marine Accident Investigation Branch report has revealed the officer at the helm of the Rosyth-Zeebrugge ferry was twice warned by his lookout about the "Homeland". Readings from the bridge of the ferry showed the officer had more than two minutes to try to avert the accident. But he did not steer the ship away until seconds before the collision. The vessel with more than 300 people on board was travelling at 26 mph. The report said the officer knew the Scottish Viking should have given way in accordance with marine regulations. He initially considered altering the vessel's course to starboard, but dismissed the option because the manoeuvre would have resulted in "potential discomfort and injury to the passengers and crew". A police investigation into the accident is still ongoing.
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Scandlines has chartered the Italian-flagged ropax vessel Scottish Viking in order to increase capacity on the Nynäshamn–Ventspils service as from January 2011. The 2009-built Scottish Viking has a capacity of 2,250 lane metres and 489 passengers. The vessel will replace the Danish-flagged Ask, which returns to the Travemünde–Liepaja service. “We have a growth on our Baltic destinations and therefore we want to meet the demand in the area”, says Søren Poulsgaard Jensen, Chief Operating Officer at Scandlines. The ropax vessel Ask replaces the chartered ropax Kaunas on the Travemünde–Liepaja service. Kaunas will be redelivered to the owner, which is DFDS Lisco. Scottish Viking comes from a long-term timecharter for Norfolkline running from Zeebrügge to Rosyth in Scotland. Source: Shipgaz news, http://www.shipgaz.com/news/top20/top4_news.phpUpload News