Grounding of passenger vessel Balmoral

Location: Entrance to the Port of Swansea, Wales.

Completed PE Summary: Balmoral

A short summary of the accident and action taken.

Merchant Vessel/Accident Details
Vessel Name Balmoral
Registered Owner/Manager Waverley Steam
Port of Registry Bristol
Flag UK
Type Passenger vessel
Built 1949
Construction Steel
Length Overall 62.03m
Gross Tonnage 735
Date/Time 24/08/2005, 1512
Location of Incident Swansea harbour area
Incident Type Grounding
Persons Onboard 20 crew
Injuries/Fatalities None
Damage/Pollution Material Damage


The passenger vessel Balmoral was navigating the main channel entering the port of Swansea, South Wales, when she ran aground close to the Swansea inner fairway buoy. The vessel sustained damage to the bottom plates which resulted in flooding to a void space. There were no passengers on board at the time of the incident.

ction taken

The Chief Inspector has written to the vessel’s owners and made two recommendations:

  • Enhance WEL’s current bridge team management training program, to ensure all masters and relief masters have successfully completed the course before assuming command of the company’s vessels.

  • Develop a personnel monitoring and appraisal system which will allow WEL management to determine the competence level of an individual, and accurately assess their suitability for promotion or prior to a specific appointment.

Published 23 January 2015