NTSB Releases El Faro Investigation Video

Published Sep 18, 2018 5:44 PM by The Maritime Executive

The U.S. National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has released a video summarizing the NTSB investigation of the October 1, 2015, sinking of El Faro and the loss of all 33 mariners aboard. 

The video examines the NTSB’s determination of the cause of the accident and discusses associated recommendations to improve marine safety. It also highlights the three missions undertaken to retrieve the voyage data recorder and document the wreckage, which was found 15,000 feet beneath the ocean's surface. 

In February, the NTSB released its final report on the tragedy. Like the U.S. Coast Guard Marine Board of Investigation, the NTSB concluded that the accident was attributable to the master's decision to sail into Hurricane Joaquin, the vessel operator's "weak" safety culture and a poor implementation of Bridge Resource Management (BRM) principles. 

NTSB also noted technical problems with machinery design standards for sustained angle of inclination, a central factor in the El Faro's loss of lube oil suction and loss of propulsion; the limited protection of fire mains from impact damage in the event of a cargo shift, which was a likely factor in the flooding of El Faro's Hold 3; and the inadequacy of El Faro's antiquated open life boats, which were unlikely to be of assistance in a hurricane. 

More information about the findings is available here.