Proceedings Of The Marine

WIN 2015

Proceedings magazine is a communication tool for the Coast Guard's Marine Safety & Security Council. Each quarterly magazine focuses on a specific theme of interest to the marine industry.

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61 Winter 2015–2016 Proceedings www.uscg.mil/proceedings just upriver of the bridge due to prevailing weather condi- tions. The bridge audio revealed no communication with that moored vessel, which could have revealed the lighting scheme of the bridge and the local notice to mariners, giving warning of the lighting scheme. Thus, VDR information provides real-time overlay of the bridge crew actions as a marine casualty unfolds, so inves- tigating offcers can verify the facts via this VDR view of the incident in real time. INV-NCOE Experience When a mobile offshore drilling unit grounded in the Arc- tic, the INV-NCOE investigation highlighted industry tow- ing standards, lack of government towing oversight, shackle design and strength, and crew competencies for Arctic tow- ing. The interest for oil exploration in the Arctic will continue to grow. Since the fnal report of this investigation covered a vast amount of information in great detail due to INV- NCOE technical and investigative support, it is hoped it will be referenced to help industry develop adequate operating procedures for the harsh Arctic environment. One-Stop Shop Whether an investigation yields an overwhelming amount of information or not enough, the INV-NCOE provides investigative expertise to ensure investigating offcers have asked and answered all the necessary questions. They then apply their technical expertise to provide in-depth analy- sis and get the trickiest questions answered. Lending such quality and accuracy to the investigative process, the Inves- tigations National Center of Expertise helps to make ROIs better products in the public interest and within the Marine Safety mission for the Coast Guard. About the author: LCDR Wilk is a 2001 U.S. Coast Guard Academy graduate. She has spent the majority of her time stationed in the Gulf, conducting vessel inspections, waterways management, and marine casualty and suspension and revoca- tion investigations. She most recently completed a tour at U.S. Coast Guard headquarters in the Offce of Marine Casualty Investigations and Analysis, where she provided program oversight for marine casualty and suspension and revocation investigations. The General Slocum The frst ofcial report of investigation was written upon conclusion of the United States Commission of Investiga- tion into the disaster to the steamship General Slocum on October 8, 1904. The General Slocum was chartered by a church group to transport approximately 1,300 individuals along the East River in New York. When a fre started in the poorly orga- nized forward cabin, it quickly spread among the steam steering gear, lamps, table, four barrels of oil, paint pots, life jackets in varying conditions, charcoal, glasses, hay, and various other ship's stores, ultimately consuming the vessel. The Commission Following the disaster, the Secretary of Commerce and Labor convened a commission to investigate the inci- dent. The commission members held an array of experi- ence and knowledge, and included the Commissioner of Corporations, the Supervising Inspector General of the Steamship Inspection Service, and members of the War Department and Department of the Navy. The Report of Investigation After countless hours reading regulations, scouring vessel and inspection documents, and interviewing witnesses, the commission produced its report regarding the General Slocum. Among various defciencies, the report noted: • lack of crew proficiency with regard to fire and abandon-ship procedures; • lack of a licensed mate, as required by certifcate; • lack of operational frefghting equipment; and • lack of construction regulation of the steamship. The commission also identifed the lack of inspection oversight (due to a shortage of inspectors) and deviation from inspection regulations. Bibliography: Report of the United States Commission of the Investigation upon the Disaster to the Steamer "General Slocum," October 8, 1904. Washington: Government Printing Ofce, 1904.

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