A vessel was lifting the six-man glass-reinforced-plastic rescue boat aboard as part of a routine training exercise, with two persons aboard, when one of the eyes for the four leg lifting bridle pulled out of the hull of the boat which was suspended approx 0.5m above the water. The boat was quickly returned to the water and to an upright position afloat. Although shaken by the experience, no staff were injured or fell out of the boat.
The bridle is designed so that two larger legs are attached fore and aft and take most of the weight, with two smaller legs to stabilize port and starboard.
A contributory cause to the failure, in addition to poor boat design, was found to be that the lifting bridle was attached to the davit incorrectly. Consequently the larger/longer fore and aft legs being the outer pair mounted on the master link, the shorter port and starboard stabilizing legs were outside the fore and aft legs making them shorter still and then taking extra strain for which they were not designed. It is important that, when using multiple leg lifting bridle, it is attached correctly.
The company has subsequently replaced these grp rescue boats.
This Company report resonates with a previous report about a grp rescue boat in which the stainless steel bolts securing a lifting lug failed. In this recent case the grp material around the lifting eye failed. If you are aware of any incident with a rescue boat, please let us know.