LTI – ALERT ALERT – STOP SLIP, TRIP & FALLS

FACTS

Within few days, Svitzer experienced two separate slip incidents, both resulting in significant HEAD INJURIES.
In the first (1) incident, the crewmember slipped on wet tiles in the bathroom, after which he fell backwards hitting his head against the edge of a tumble dryer.
In the other (2) incident, the crewmember did not place his foot correctly on the steps of the emergency escape ladder after which he slipped on the step, ending up hitting his face/nose area against one of the higher positioned steps of the ladder.
These incidents remind us that slips, trips and falls remain the most common injury on board our tugs. Your caution is required!

Preliminary findings and possible causes for incident 1:  • There was no focus on the hazards in the area and in making careful steps.  • The bathroom floor should never have been left wet irrespective of the surface. • The IP was wearing flip flops, which offers no slip resistance in the soling. • Due to lack of space in the accommodation, the common domestic machines are placed in the shared bathroom.     • Not relating to the incident, the domestic machines are placed on wooden pallets.

Preliminary findings and possible causes for incident 2:
• The injured party did not pay sufficiently attention to the hazards in the area and was not cautioned enough in how he positioned his feet on the ladder. • The emergency ladder is located and constructed poorly, as the space between the bulkhead and the ladder/steps is too narrow, thus not supporting a good footrest. Further a pipe is blocking the lower part of the ladder.

PLEASE DISPLAY AT A PROMINENT LOCATION ONBOARD VESSEL AND DISCUSS AT NEXT SAFETY MEETING

Immediate corrective/ preventive action for incident 1: • Constantly remind ourselves and our colleagues to move carefully around the vessel, both on duty and off duty. Please help to STOP SLIP, TRIP & FALLS.  • Floors should not be left wet as it creates a hazardous environment (Unsafe Condition HMS 09-025). IF YOU SEE AN UNSAFE CONDITION YOU OWN IT AND MUST ACT. • Evaluate if your off-duty footwear is safe enough for use on board. Svitzer recommend not to wear open toe shoes or flip flops (HMS 09-003).  • Tug accommodation design does not always provide optimal room for domestic items so please evaluate and assess carefully where these are located on board. Be cautioned not to introduce new hazards. • Not relating to the incident, it is noted that the domestic machines are placed on wooden pallets in the bathroom. This creates an unhygienic condition as wood can get mould of the moist condition over time. Further the pallets are sticking out posing another trip hazard. Both these conditions could have been reported as Unsafe Conditions. This matter will be dealt with as well.

Immediate corrective/ preventive action for incident 2: • Constantly remind ourselves and our colleagues to move carefully around the vessel, both on duty and off duty. Please help to STOP SLIP, TRIP & FALLS.  • In this case a not optimal positioned ladder has contributed to the slip as it is not providing proper and solid footrest at the mid sole of the shoe but merely only at the front of the shoe.  • Such a design challenge continues to require extra attention from the crew in case it cannot be improved. This and similar challenges in design/construction is important to discuss during Safety Meetings / Safety Area Inspections and report as an Unsafe Condition as per. HMS 09-025.
PLEASE DISPLAY AT A PROMINENT LOCATION ONBOARD VESSEL AND DISCUSS AT NEXT SAFETY MEETING