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Precis File
SHIP NAME: Alexandre P KEY: NUM. ENTRIES: 2
source ATSB
type A
volume
material
dead 24
link http://www.atsb.gov.au/publications/investigation_reports/1990/MAIR/pdf/MAIR24_001.pdf

Here is an excerpt.

Condition of Ship

The majority of those interviewed attended the vessel during hours of darkness and when on board ventured little further than the accommodation. However, the general opinion was that the vessel was not in a well maintained codntion. Those that could recall the ship's previous visits, under the name Acacia, were of the opinion that even then the ship was not well maintained.

The air conditioning was not working and the accommodation was very warm; the crew were reportedly sleeping in the alleyways and out on deck. The accommodation was stated to be in a 'rather sad state', 'very scruffy, many deep rustly patches in floors', 'smell of sewage and everything, a really dirty ship'.

The Providore gave evidence that he had commented to others boarding at the time of the ship's arrival 'that this was the worst rust bucket he had boarded in his 15 years of boarding vessels'. On the morning of 12 March, whilst he was waiting to place freezer stores on board, the Providore stated that he strolled around the superstructure decks and his impressions of a rust bucket 'were as true was when I first boarded; the poop and upper decks completely rusted, appeared as if the vessel had been laid up for some time'. The Providore also noted that the lanyard on a life buoy was somewhat old and had rotted, also that around the lifeboat davits there was a lot of rust everywhere.

The loader operators, from their vantage point above the deck, observed rusty pipes and steam emanating from around the winches.

The shift supervisors, who had occaision to walk along the deck, said that the deck was very rusty, one describing it as like 'walking on cornflakes, about the worst Ive seen'. Large clouds of steam were also recalled. All the openings of the hatches were reported as being badly rusted. One supervisor, who had climbed onto No 5 hatch cover whilst directing the topping-off of Nos 6 and 5 hatches, stated that he noticed holes in the corrugated bulkhead between hatches 4 and 5 (the transverse bulkhead between holds 2 and 3) through which he had been able to see daylight. This was a four hold ship with two hatches per hold.

Another supervisor, observing the ship from the jetty just prior to sailing time, described 'fist sized' holes in the port side of No 5 hatch cover and holes in the port side of both Nos 5 and 6 hatch coamings; the forward port corner of the No 5 coaming being described as 'all but rusted away and was like lattice, only the actual corner appeared solid'.


source CTX
type D
volume
material
dead 24
link

Ship sank within a day or two of leaving Dampier loaded with iron ore. The weather was mild. Crew was unable to get off any distress signal, and when a lifeboat was found, the ends were sheared off. It has not been launched. Australians determined that the loading pattern was legal. Two dead crew were found in a liferaft with burns. All witnesses agree that the 1967 built ship, classed by the Korean Register, was in putrid condition.

She was an Ore/Oil but had not traded in oil "for a number of years". Australians discounted a Berge Istra type explosion, but could say only it was either a massive structural failure, or a sudden ER explosion.

Engine rooms almost never explode in a manner that would prevent a crew from getting off a distress signal. If it were not for the very mild weather, CTX would quickly call this a corrosion abetted structural failure. But with the mild weather and the burns, we feel that the most likely cause is an explosion in the old cargo tanks. Even tho she had not traded in oil in some time, a ship this poorly maintained is unlikely to have had her tanks properly cleaned. But for now, we are calling the cause Unknown Hull failure.