March 24, 2023

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HSE to investigate dislodged vessel in Edinburgh dock

The Health and Safety Executive is to investigate how a US Navy vessel toppled over at a dock in Edinburgh. 

Leith Port in Edinburgh. AR Photo/ Alamy Stock Photo

It says it will visit the site at the Imperial Dock, Leith, working alongside Police Scotland.

The 250ft research vessel dislodged from its holding on Wednesday (22 March) injuring 35 people, with 23 being taken to hospital and 12 treated on-site. 

The ship is owned by the United States Naval Facilities Engineering and Expeditionary Warfare Center and operated by Oceaneering International. During the Covid pandemic it was placed in long-term moorage in 2020 and has not been used since. 

Dr Iraklis Lazazis an experienced marine academic from Strathclyde University’s said the incident was extremely unusual and will require a robust investigation. “I’ve never come across myself any such accidents,” he told BBC Scotland, “being involved in a number of dry dockings throughout the world, as well as through my academic career. No such thing has happened before.”  

“It’s something that really needs to be investigated very, very thoroughly in order to make sure what was the original cause of the whole accident, but I have to say it is a very, very unusual thing to happen within a dry dock.” 

The dock is owned by Dales Marine Services, who released the following statement following the event: “We can confirm that all those on board and at the facility have been accounted for and our priority is to ensure the wellbeing of all who have been affected.”

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