With the boat
stopped in the water, the trainees re-positioned the console,
then re-started the engine and recovered the instructor. The
instructor’s automatic lifejacket had inflated and he was
The investigation identified a number of factors which contributed
to the detachment of the console, including:
• The console module was secured to the deck with only
four screws, of which only one had effectively penetrated the
deck’s plywood base.
• The console module had not been fitted in accordance
with the RIB manufacturer’s guidance.
• The RIB was not returned to an approved installer,
as intended by its manufacturer, before entering service.
• The craft was not thoroughly inspected before being
delivered to its owner.
A number of safety issues regarding the quality management
of the RIB’s manufacturer and its conformity with
the Recreational Craft Directive were also identified during
the investigation. These included:
• The manufacturer did not effectively monitor the activities
of its dealers and did not take sufficient precautions to
prevent its RIBs being put into service without being subjected
pre-delivery inspection by an authorised installer.
• The manufacturer did not meet its responsibilities with
respect to the requirements of the RCD. In particular, a CE marked
builder’s plate was affixed to the hull before the craft
had been completed and its adherence to the essential requirements
of the RCD had been verified.
In May 2008, the MAIB wrote to RIB-X (manufacturer) recommending
that it determine which of its boats that had been sold had
not been completed by approved installers, and to check
standard of rigging on these hulls was at least equivalent
to the standard detailed in its own procedures.
To prevent a similar accident occurring in the future, the British
Marine Federation (BMF) and the Royal Yachting Association have
taken action to raise the awareness of the issues raised by this
accident, and the Department for Business Enterprise and Regulatory
Reform (BERR) has undertaken to review current guidance on the
application of the RCD and facilitate action by industry to ensure
that boats sold within the UK are safe to operate. The International
Council of Marine Industry Associations (ICOMIA) has been recommended
to advise its members that CE marked builder’s plates should
not be affixed to partly completed boats. A further recommendation
has been made to RIB-X aimed at improving its quality management
system and compliance with the RCD. A recommendation has also
been made to Holes Bay Marine, which is intended to ensure it
meets industry best practice."
Fortunately no fatality occurred on this occasion. However as
a 'skipper' you should be aware of what checks should be done
regardless of whether your craft is brand new or not.
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