At approximately 0500 on 16 August 2016, a fire started in the crew mess room of the fishing vessel Ardent II while alongside in Peterhead. The three crew sleeping on board escaped without injury but the vessel was extensively damaged and later declared a constructive total loss.
The MAIB investigation identified that:
An electrical fault or failure of a multi-socket adapter in the crew mess was the most likely cause of the fire
There was no smoke detector fitted in the crew mess room and it was fortunate one of the crew awoke and discovered the fire
Unless electrical equipment is regularly visually inspected for bare wires, that appropriate fuses are in place, and for signs of burning, together with regular Portable Appliance Testing (PAT), the risk of an electrical fire occurring is increased
Without a comprehensive fire detection and alarm system that covers all spaces that pose a risk, fishing vessel crew, particularly those sleeping on board, cannot be confident of being alerted early enough to be able to take effective action
In view of current regulation and guidance, and that more explicit instruction on which spaces on board fishing vessels require a means of fire detection is intended to become mandatory in 2017, no recommendations are made in this report.
A safety flyer to the small commercial vessel industry highlighting a number of the safety lessons was produced for this report.