Departure GM was 4.5 feet (1.3 meters) min required was 3.7 feet ( 1.1 meter)
Shoreside loading personnel and deck officers with experience on El Faro told
investigators that a 0.5-foot GM margin was added to the vessel’s required GM at sailing
(3.655 feet). 166 GM margin is not a statutory requirement. The CargoMax printout from
September 29 gave a sailing GM of 4.854 feet, corrected for free surface effect to 4.455 feet fordeparture. (Free surface effect is a reduction in a vessel’s stability caused by liquids moving about freely in a tank or hold.) The corrected GM was thus 0.8 foot above the required GM and 0.3 for more than the owner-applied GM margin of 0.5 foot.