Collision Emergency Response Procedure

  1. Inform the Master and Engine Room:
    • Immediately inform the Master about the collision incident, even if he is not on the bridge.
    • Inform the engine room and stop the engines to prevent any further impact or damage.
  2. Send Distress Signal:
    • Send designated or undesignated distress messages through VHF, MF/HF, SAT C, or any available means, depending on the sea area and urgency.
    • If time permits, inform the company and the nearest coast radio station about the incident.
  3. Record Important Data:
    • Record the time of the collision, the name, and IMO number of the other vessel(s) involved in the collision.
    • Avoid arguments with the other vessel’s crew; focus on dealing with the emergency situation.
  4. Sound Alarms and Muster Crew:
    • Sound the general emergency alarm to alert all crew members on the ship.
    • Take attendance and report any missing persons to the Master.
    • Prepare lifeboats for quick embarkation and make arrangements for a possible abandonment if needed.
  5. Assess the Damage:
    • Send an officer to inspect the area of impact and assess the extent of damage.
    • Report the damage assessment to the Master for further decisions.
  6. Take Soundings:
    • Send crew members to take soundings of all tanks and compartments to check for any ingress of water.
    • Compare the sounding data with previous records to identify any changes indicating potential damage.
  7. Take Immediate Action in Case of Damage:
    • If any compartments or tanks are damaged and water ingress is confirmed, make arrangements to pump out the water.
    • Seal off the affected compartment to prevent further flooding if necessary.
  8. Check for Oil Spills:
    • If fuel or oil tanks are damaged, check for potential oil spillage and follow the procedures in the Shipboard Oil Pollution Emergency Plan (SOPEP) to contain and mitigate the spill.
  9. Provide Assistance:
    • If possible and feasible, provide assistance to the other vessel involved in the collision.
  10. Reach the Nearest Port (If Possible):
    • If the vessel can be safely maneuvered and remains afloat without immediate danger, set a course for the nearest port for repairs.
    • Consider the effects of any adverse list or trim caused by the collision and take corrective actions.
  11. Abandon the Ship (Last Resort):
  • If the vessel is in imminent danger of sinking and all efforts to keep it afloat have failed, the Master may order the crew to abandon the ship.
  • Abandon the ship only as a last resort and follow all necessary procedures for safe evacuation.

In any emergency situation, quick and effective actions, clear communication, and well-practiced emergency drills are crucial for ensuring the safety of crew members and the vessel. The Master’s experience and leadership play a critical role in making timely and appropriate decisions during such incidents.

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