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Singapore

Worker dies after falling into sea while boarding service boat

There were 28 workplace fatalities in the first half of 2022.

Worker dies after falling into sea while boarding service boat

A reenactment of the accident scene where a worker fell into the sea while crossing a gangway. (Source: WSH Council)

SINGAPORE: A 59-year-old local worker fell into the sea while crossing a gangway and drowned in a workplace accident that happened on May 17.

The Ministry of Manpower (MOM) said on Monday (Jul 4) that the worker had just crossed a gangway from one vessel to another when he lost his balance and fell into the water.

His body was recovered four days later on May 21.

The accident happened at the Eastern Bunkering A Anchorage, on a vessel occupied by Unitrust Marine Services. The worker was employed by Alliance Instrumentation.

A notice from the Workplace Safety & Health (WSH) Council said preliminary investigations revealed that the worker was wearing a life jacket and carrying a backpack containing equipment at the time of the accident.

The number of workplace fatalities in the first six months of 2022 is 28, higher than in 2019 pre-COVID-19. The marine industry is among higher-risk industries where fatal accidents have been more common. 

The WSH Council advised that to prevent similar accidents, companies should ensure the worker is wearing a suitable life jacket that is in good condition, and that all belongings, loose items and equipment should be packed into bags and transferred separately to the vessel.

They should not proceed with the vessel transfer if there are unfavourable weather or sea conditions, extensive vessel or boat movement, if anyone feels unwell or if it feels unsafe to proceed.
 
They should also deploy a deckhand on the service boat and a gangway watch on the vessel to supervise and assist workers during vessel transfer, and to activate emergency response and rescue procedures if needed.

Source: CNA/hm(ac)

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