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Ladder rigged upside down led to seafarer’s death

A man who fell overboard from the bulk carrier Hyundai Dangjin and drowned off the West Australian coast was using a ladder that was rigged upside down, an investigation by the Australian Transport Safety Bureau has revealed.

The second mate drowned in bad weather off Cape Lambert last year.

An Australian Transport Safety Bureau investigation found the ladder, that the second mate used to climb down the side of the ship to check the draught, did not provide a flat surface to stand on because it was upside down.

The ship’s charterer, Rio Tinto, has since banned rope ladders from being used to undertake readings.

Sam Chambers

Starting out with the Informa Group in 2000 in Hong Kong, Sam Chambers became editor of Maritime Asia magazine as well as East Asia Editor for the world’s oldest newspaper, Lloyd’s List. In 2005 he pursued a freelance career and wrote for a variety of titles including taking on the role of Asia Editor at Seatrade magazine and China correspondent for Supply Chain Asia. His work has also appeared in The Economist, The New York Times, The Sunday Times and The International Herald Tribune.
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