Investigation launched into GB Shipyard industrial accident

Sen. Kwasi Thompson, Minister of State for Grand Bahama

NASSAU, BAHAMAS – Minister of state for Grand Bahama Senator Kwasi Thompson confirming to media on Tuesday that investigations are underway to determine exactly what caused a crane to collapse into a mega cruise liner, the Oasis of The Seas, which was docked at the Grand Bahama Shipyard on Monday afternoon.

Both Thompson and Peter Turnquest, Deputy Prime Minister and Member of Parliament for East Grand Bahama were on the island at the time of the accident.

The mishap injured 8 shipyard workers.

Thompson confirmed that investigations are only in the preliminary stages and he was unable to share any details about the crash.

However, as for the injured individuals, Thomson said up to Monday night, three persons have been discharged, one was held for evaluation and four were kept overnight for medical attention.

Thompson confirmed that even though business was briefly interrupted on Monday, operations at the shipyard resumed on Tuesday.

“Yesterday the shipyard temporarily shut down as the largest of their three docks was the dock that was damaged. Today we understand that the shipyard is open again and two of the three remaining docks are still active and still continue to do their repair work, so employees are back to work as of this morning,” he said.

Monday’s mishap raised concerns once again about safety issues at the Grand Bahama Shipyard.

It was back in February 2018 that the International Labor Organization (ILO) met with stakeholders at the port to discuss safety regulations, but Cabinet ministers were unable to confirm yesterday if those safety codes were ever enacted.

However, Thompson said that government is confident that safety regulations at the port are up to par with international standards.

“The government is always concerned when an accident like this has taken place,” Thompson asserted.

“The shipyard has assured us that the safety procedures that are supposed to be in place, were in place, and that their emergency procedures worked and as a result of those procedures working there was no loss of life and injuries were kept to a minimum.”