Accidents on Ships

Ships are the undisputed kings of the ocean. Constructed at such massive dimensions, they can haul tons of people and equipment across different ends of the seas. Also, they possess a marvelous amount of technology and engineering expertise. But even though these gigantic machines are constructed with nothing less than the best stuff, they can still be prone to accidents. Here are just some of the most common types of accidents on ships.

1. Capsizing- While small boats such as the dinghy and the yacht can be righted even after being capsized to a huge degree, larger sea craft such as ships is not constructed that way. In fact, certain ships only have a certain capsizing angle before it is tilted to a point of no return. When a ship gets capsized beyond this particular angle, the boat would simply lie on its side and sink. There are different reasons why these ships capsize, but the biggest cause (both literally and figuratively) is encountering massive waves.

2. Grounding- This is an accident where the ship’s bottom (particularly its hull) makes contact with a shallow portion of the seabed. Depending on the angle of the hit, the speed of the ship, and the roughness/sharpness of the ground, the damage on a ship’s hull may vary. If the hit sustained is significant enough, the ship will start taking in water and can sink unless something drastic is done. This often happens when the ship crew goes into the docks or the coast the wrong way.

3. Cargo shift- This classification of accidents on ships is a major concern for those operating cargo ships. But the fact is this can also happen in other ships. This happens if the cargo is stowed into the ship in uneven function. If the weight of the ship’s cargo is unbalanced towards one side, the logic is the ship’s balance is shifted towards the heavier side, causing it to tilt and even capsize. This can also happen if the cargo is not secured properly, causing it to get swung towards one of the boat’s sides.

4. Fires- A fire on the ship can take place because of different reasons. It can be caused by mechanical failure. It is also commonly caused by failure in the ship’s auxiliary systems such as the electrical system. It can also be caused by the ignition of explosive material such as fuel and gunpowder. If a fire goes out of control in the middle of the sea, huge casualties is almost always a guarantee.

5. Collisions- The boat making contact to foreign objects at sea is a very common reason for a lot of accidents and wrecks. A ship can make contact with other ships or boats due to reasons such as lack of communication, lack of monitoring technology, or sheer lack of attention by the captain and his/her crew. It’s also possible for these ships to make contact with floating objects such as icebergs, beacons, and oil rigs. Depending on how the collision takes place, these accidents on ships can get ugly in a hurry.

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