DIVER MASTER - Foundering on 4 August 2014


The sail training ship KRUZENSHTERN was scheduled for an early departure from The Tall Ships Races 2014 in Esbjerg, Denmark, on 4 August at 1730. The event did not end until the next day, but KRUZENSHTERN needed to be in time for another event. A fireworks show was planned for later that night and, for safety reasons, the port was scheduled to be closed at 1800.

The tug boats SVITZER HELIOS and SVITZER TRYM had been ordered to assist KRUZENSHTERN on departure. When the time of departure approached, it became uncertain whether SVITZER TRYM would be able to finish another job in due time, and the option of substituting SVITZER TRYM for another smaller tug boat, DIVER MASTER, was accepted by all the parties involved.

DIVER MASTER was acting as the forward tug boat during KRUZENSHTERN´s departure. Once they exited the port breakwaters, KRUZENSHTERN prepared for a starboard turn to follow the route through Grådyb Channel. The pilot on board KRUZENSHTERN ordered DIVER MASTER into a one o´clock position in preparation for the turn, but the master of DIVER MASTER lost control of the tug which ended up being dragged by its own towline. DIVER MASTER swung onto, and hit, the side of KRUZENSHTERN. DIVER MASTER capsized and subsequently foundered as a result of flooding.

The report can be downloaded in PDF format here.