Flooding and sinking of twin rig trawler Transcend

Location: 93nm north east of Lerwick, Scotland.

Completed PE Summary: Transcend

A short summary of the accident and action taken.

Fishing Vessel/Accident Details
Vessel Name Transcend
Registered Owner BF 61 Ltd
Port of Registry Banff (BF 61)
Flag UK
Type Twin-rig trawler
Built 1986
Construction Wood
Length Overall 23.08m
Registered Length 21.80m
Gross Tonnage 171.77
Date/Time 03/06/2009, 2050 (UTC)
Location of Incident 93nm NE of Lerwick
Incident Type Flooding and sinking
Persons Onboard 5
Injuries/Fatalities None
Damage/Pollution Vessel lost


The fishing vessel Transcend was in the process of shooting her trawl gear when, at around 2050 on 3 June 2009, the crew became aware of flooding in the engine room. Despite employing the vessel’s two bilge pumps and a portable submersible pump, the flooding continued to increase, and at 2145 the skipper issued a “Mayday”, to which a nearby emergency response and rescue vessel (ERRV), and another fishing vessel, diverted. The three deckhands were evacuated shortly afterwards into a liferaft and then onto the ERRV. An additional portable pump was transferred from the other fishing vessel, but this could not be started, and the flooding continued to increase, spreading to the cabin. Once main engine power and then generator power had been lost, the skipper and engineer abandoned to a daughter craft from the ERRV. The vessel capsized to starboard, sinking by the stern around 10 minutes later, at 2346. The uninjured crew were winched off the ERRV by Coastguard helicopter and airlifted to Shetland. Although the crew had observed water appearing to enter the engine room through hull planking in way of the starboard fuel tanks, the initial cause of the flooding could not be confirmed.

Action taken

The Deputy Chief Inspector of Marine Accidents has written to the vessel’s owner/skipper advising him to review and adopt the guidance provided by the Maritime and Coastguard Agency in MGN 165(F) to minimise the risks of flooding on any fishing vessels he may own in the future.

Published: July 2009

Published 23 January 2015