Collision between oil tankers Saetta and Conger on completion of ship to ship transfer

Location: 9.5 miles south east of Southwold, England.

Accident Investigation Report 3/2010

Read our marine accident investigation report, which includes what happened, actions taken and subsequent recommendations:

SaettaCongerReport.pdf (671.00 kb)



On 10 August 2009, the Greek registered tanker Saetta and the Marshall Islands’ registered tanker Conger collided when completing a ship to ship (STS) transfer operation off Southwold, Suffolk. Saetta’s starboard lifeboat and davit were damaged. Conger was undamaged and there were no injuries and no pollution.

Safety Issues

  • collision occurred at very slow speed, and resulted from the failure of Conger’s main engine to start as the vessels separated
  • Both vessels manoeuvred to try and avoid a collision but they were very close when the engine failed and the action taken was not effective
  • response to the engine failure, and poor communications, were also contributory factors


The Oil Companies International Marine Forum (OCIMF) has initiated the development of operational standards for STS service providers and occupational standards for STS superintendents, which will be published by mid 2010. In co-operation with the International Chamber of Shipping, OCIMF also intends to revise the STS Transfer Guide, to include operations between gas and chemical tankers, and advice on risk assessment and manpower requirements. In view of this action and the action taken by Fender Care Marine (FCM) and the operators of Saetta and Conger, no recommendations are considered necessary.

This report was published in 2000.

Published 23 January 2015