Contact made by ro-ro cargo ferry Clipper Point with quay and 2 berthed ships

Location: South Quay, Port of Heysham, England.

Accident Investigation Report 16/2012

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

ClipperPoint.pdf (2,722.48 kb)

Annexes (7,423.09 kb)


On 24 May 2011, Seatruck Ferries Limited’s ro-ro cargo ferry, Clipper Point, made heavy contact with the quay, two ro-ro ferries and another vessel while manoeuvring to berth stern-first at the Port of Heysham’s No.1 linkspan. Clipper Point sustained damage to her starboard quarter and her steering compartment was holed below the waterline.

Safety Issues

  • the master’s decision to enter the Port of Heysham, with strong winds, reduced bow thruster power, and restricted manoeuvring room was ill-considered
  • the teamwork between the officers on the bridge was ineffective and the master had no contingency plan once the manoeuvre started to go wrong
  • management of the marine risks in the Port of Heysham was incomplete
  • neither Seatruck Ferries Limited nor the Port of Heysham’s safety management systems had properly controlled the risks that their organisations faced from berthing operations


Recommendations have been made to both organisations to ensure that the proposed actions are implemented. In addition, the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) has been recommended to carry out a Port Marine Safety Code ‘Health Check’ of the Port of Heysham in early 2013.

This report was published on 14 June 2012.

Published 23 January 2015