UK MAIB: Watch Officer was Sleeping and Likely Drunk as Cargo Ship Grounds

They are urging ship owners and managers to carry out detailed and accurate reviews looking at the use of lookouts and navigational systems while highlighting in the report the frequent violations or flagrant falsifying records.

MAIB Report is here: Report on the investigation of
the grounding of the general cargo vessel
BBC Marmara in the Little Minch, off the west coast of Scotland

This is from the report:

1.5.3 Applicable literature on work and rest hours
In November 2020, the World Maritime University (WMU) published a research paper14 on the implementation of the work and rest hours regulatory framework. Its findings identified several issues, including: an imbalance between the workload and the number of personnel available to complete the numerous and diverse range of tasks required in ship operation. This oftentimes leads to violations of work/rest hour requirements… [sic]; … a “culture of adjustment” among seafarers; work hours are either underreported or work/rest hours are adjusted to facilitate compliance.
And, that: For seafarers, the sole objective of recording work/rest hours is to confirm compliance to avoid disruptions to vessel operations and not to confirm actual working time onboard. They seem unable to prioritise their allegiance: ship interests or regulations. They are trapped in cognitive dissonance15, where deviance is normalised16.

“They (seafarers) seem unable to prioritize their allegiance: ship interests or regulations” - That’s an odd thing to write, of course seafarers can prioritize between employed or being on the beach without pay.


Odd in the sense that this crew seemed well past prioritizing between ship interests and regulations. They ignored them both.
The report makes recommendation we can all agree with, but the issue in this grounding is not that the crew was tired from overwork. They had enough energy to socialize and drink to excess.

That quote is from the report but is originally from a World Maritime University (WMU) research paper. It’s about the culture of regulatory non-compliance in general. Not specific to that accident.

That particular accident had both, non-compliance with regulations, falsification of records and drinking.