Car deck on board Portsmouth to Fishbourne Wightlink ferry collapses

Passengers injured as car ferry deck collapses. Pictures by Shane Thornton.

Passengers injured as car ferry deck collapses. Pictures by Shane Thornton.

First published in News
Last updated

Passengers travelling with Wighlight have been told that their fleet of ferries are safe after the upper deck of a vessel collapsed.

Three passengers and a crew member were treated in hospital for their injuries following the collapse of the deck.

Paramedics along with police, fire crews and the coastguard were called to the Fishbourne terminal on the Isle of Wight shortly before 10.30pm yesterday.

As passengers disembarked the forward mezzanine deck on the starboard side of the ferry, which had nine cars on it, collapsed on to the deck beneath it as it was being lowered.

Vehicles on the lower deck had already left the ferry.

The incident occurred on the Wightlink Ferries St Helen car ferry, which sailed at 9.30pm from Portsmouth to the Isle of Wight with 181 passengers and 11 crew on board.

Karen Woods, a spokeswoman for the company, said the deck ''dropped a few feet and made contact with the lower deck''.

She said: ''One member of the crew and three passengers have been taken to St Mary's Hospital by ambulance. The Isle of Wight ambulance service has confirmed none of the injuries are life-threatening. A member of Wightlink's staff attended the hospital to aid and support customers.''

Daily Echo:

It is not known whether those injured were in cars on the mezzanine deck or were on the level beneath it.

A full investigation is under way and the incident has been reported to the Marine Accident Investigation Branch.

A spokesman for the Isle of Wight Ambulance Service said the patients were being treated for ''a variety of injuries'', and all were ''conscious and breathing'' when they were taken from the scene.

He said: ''We are not aware of the nature of the injuries. It is very fortunate that it was only four people injured, all things considered.''

A spokesman for Isle of Wight NHS Trust, said the four patients who were taken to hospital as a precautionary measure had now been discharged.

He added: "The Ambulance Service and Trust would like to thank the other emergency services and Wightlink for their support in dealing with this incident.”

Wightlink Ferries said the St Helen car ferry is inspected regularly by external surveyors and last underwent an engineering survey, including its mezzanine decks, in May following its annual refit.

John Burrows, chief operating officer at Wightlink, assured passengers travelling with the ferry compnay that he was satsfied the fleet was safe.

"This is an extremely rare occurance. It will not be happening again in the forseeable future."

He added that the St Helen was brought back to Portsmouth and immediately taken out of service. Some delays were reported on the affected crossing but all outher routes with Wighlight were running to timetable.

 

Comments (26)

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7:26am Sat 19 Jul 14

rudolph_hucker says...

Lucky no one was seriously hurt or killed
Lucky no one was seriously hurt or killed rudolph_hucker
  • Score: 10

7:32am Sat 19 Jul 14

Kirsty666 says...

I hope all recover from this incident soon and Wightlink make a formal apology to all involved
I hope all recover from this incident soon and Wightlink make a formal apology to all involved Kirsty666
  • Score: 2

8:16am Sat 19 Jul 14

fritzer says...

Oh ! my god and had an inspection in May, some one must be in a spot of trouble.
Oh ! my god and had an inspection in May, some one must be in a spot of trouble. fritzer
  • Score: -1

8:27am Sat 19 Jul 14

Micle1974 says...

Last survey/inspection in May means nothing.
How many people drive their car from the MOT and service centre and crash them or have them break down.
Mechanical failure big time
Last survey/inspection in May means nothing. How many people drive their car from the MOT and service centre and crash them or have them break down. Mechanical failure big time Micle1974
  • Score: 9

9:48am Sat 19 Jul 14

The Wickham Man says...

Agree with Micle. You can't make anything 100% safe no matter how many times you inspect it. Some accidents are down to sudden failures, not detectable gradual wear. In this case perhaps a hydraulic line or a valve may have suddenly failed causing the deck to drop but that line may have looked and tested perfectly ok in May. People blathering about apologies and excitredly looking round for someone to blame (for Gods sake what's wrong with you) need to grow up and ask if they themselves are 100% safe Of course they aren't even if they think they are. Go on mark me down if it makes you feel better - it doesn't make me wrong though.
Agree with Micle. You can't make anything 100% safe no matter how many times you inspect it. Some accidents are down to sudden failures, not detectable gradual wear. In this case perhaps a hydraulic line or a valve may have suddenly failed causing the deck to drop but that line may have looked and tested perfectly ok in May. People blathering about apologies and excitredly looking round for someone to blame (for Gods sake what's wrong with you) need to grow up and ask if they themselves are 100% safe Of course they aren't even if they think they are. Go on mark me down if it makes you feel better - it doesn't make me wrong though. The Wickham Man
  • Score: 36

10:01am Sat 19 Jul 14

espanuel says...

The Wickham Man wrote:
Agree with Micle. You can't make anything 100% safe no matter how many times you inspect it. Some accidents are down to sudden failures, not detectable gradual wear. In this case perhaps a hydraulic line or a valve may have suddenly failed causing the deck to drop but that line may have looked and tested perfectly ok in May. People blathering about apologies and excitredly looking round for someone to blame (for Gods sake what's wrong with you) need to grow up and ask if they themselves are 100% safe Of course they aren't even if they think they are. Go on mark me down if it makes you feel better - it doesn't make me wrong though.
Totally agree with what your saying . To many judges and juries on here at times.
[quote][p][bold]The Wickham Man[/bold] wrote: Agree with Micle. You can't make anything 100% safe no matter how many times you inspect it. Some accidents are down to sudden failures, not detectable gradual wear. In this case perhaps a hydraulic line or a valve may have suddenly failed causing the deck to drop but that line may have looked and tested perfectly ok in May. People blathering about apologies and excitredly looking round for someone to blame (for Gods sake what's wrong with you) need to grow up and ask if they themselves are 100% safe Of course they aren't even if they think they are. Go on mark me down if it makes you feel better - it doesn't make me wrong though.[/p][/quote]Totally agree with what your saying . To many judges and juries on here at times. espanuel
  • Score: 11

10:59am Sat 19 Jul 14

Reality-man says...

espanuel wrote:
The Wickham Man wrote:
Agree with Micle. You can't make anything 100% safe no matter how many times you inspect it. Some accidents are down to sudden failures, not detectable gradual wear. In this case perhaps a hydraulic line or a valve may have suddenly failed causing the deck to drop but that line may have looked and tested perfectly ok in May. People blathering about apologies and excitredly looking round for someone to blame (for Gods sake what's wrong with you) need to grow up and ask if they themselves are 100% safe Of course they aren't even if they think they are. Go on mark me down if it makes you feel better - it doesn't make me wrong though.
Totally agree with what your saying . To many judges and juries on here at times.
Agree, kind of falls under the category of 'Sh1t Happens'
[quote][p][bold]espanuel[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]The Wickham Man[/bold] wrote: Agree with Micle. You can't make anything 100% safe no matter how many times you inspect it. Some accidents are down to sudden failures, not detectable gradual wear. In this case perhaps a hydraulic line or a valve may have suddenly failed causing the deck to drop but that line may have looked and tested perfectly ok in May. People blathering about apologies and excitredly looking round for someone to blame (for Gods sake what's wrong with you) need to grow up and ask if they themselves are 100% safe Of course they aren't even if they think they are. Go on mark me down if it makes you feel better - it doesn't make me wrong though.[/p][/quote]Totally agree with what your saying . To many judges and juries on here at times.[/p][/quote]Agree, kind of falls under the category of 'Sh1t Happens' Reality-man
  • Score: 7

11:23am Sat 19 Jul 14

Sir Ad E Noid says...

Kirsty666 wrote:
I hope all recover from this incident soon and Wightlink make a formal apology to all involved
Correct, calling for formal apologies and other limp drivel is, hopefully, a fading fad. Nobody died, their injuries weren't that serious but they were certainly shaken up and knocked about. Get well soon and move onwards and upwards.
[quote][p][bold]Kirsty666[/bold] wrote: I hope all recover from this incident soon and Wightlink make a formal apology to all involved[/p][/quote]Correct, calling for formal apologies and other limp drivel is, hopefully, a fading fad. Nobody died, their injuries weren't that serious but they were certainly shaken up and knocked about. Get well soon and move onwards and upwards. Sir Ad E Noid
  • Score: 4

11:31am Sat 19 Jul 14

weall8leedscum says...

This would never happen under sharia law
This would never happen under sharia law weall8leedscum
  • Score: -12

12:06pm Sat 19 Jul 14

southy says...

The Wickham Man wrote:
Agree with Micle. You can't make anything 100% safe no matter how many times you inspect it. Some accidents are down to sudden failures, not detectable gradual wear. In this case perhaps a hydraulic line or a valve may have suddenly failed causing the deck to drop but that line may have looked and tested perfectly ok in May. People blathering about apologies and excitredly looking round for someone to blame (for Gods sake what's wrong with you) need to grow up and ask if they themselves are 100% safe Of course they aren't even if they think they are. Go on mark me down if it makes you feel better - it doesn't make me wrong though.
True you can't make it 100% safe you can only minimise the risk, Deckhand would inspect rams and cables every day before service had started, its just one of those things that happen and do happen from time to time.
I seen this happen with a car transporter ship at Avonmouth a hanging deck come down and like in this case as it all ways the deck underneath is cleared before deck is lowed and it done the same drop down on one corner the other 3 corners the emergency snap on locks reacted like you get in a lift shaft
[quote][p][bold]The Wickham Man[/bold] wrote: Agree with Micle. You can't make anything 100% safe no matter how many times you inspect it. Some accidents are down to sudden failures, not detectable gradual wear. In this case perhaps a hydraulic line or a valve may have suddenly failed causing the deck to drop but that line may have looked and tested perfectly ok in May. People blathering about apologies and excitredly looking round for someone to blame (for Gods sake what's wrong with you) need to grow up and ask if they themselves are 100% safe Of course they aren't even if they think they are. Go on mark me down if it makes you feel better - it doesn't make me wrong though.[/p][/quote]True you can't make it 100% safe you can only minimise the risk, Deckhand would inspect rams and cables every day before service had started, its just one of those things that happen and do happen from time to time. I seen this happen with a car transporter ship at Avonmouth a hanging deck come down and like in this case as it all ways the deck underneath is cleared before deck is lowed and it done the same drop down on one corner the other 3 corners the emergency snap on locks reacted like you get in a lift shaft southy
  • Score: 0

12:29pm Sat 19 Jul 14

freefinker says...

weall8leedscum wrote:
This would never happen under sharia law
LOL
[quote][p][bold]weall8leedscum[/bold] wrote: This would never happen under sharia law[/p][/quote]LOL freefinker
  • Score: -2

1:15pm Sat 19 Jul 14

florida saint says...

up the saints
up the saints florida saint
  • Score: -4

1:27pm Sat 19 Jul 14

CapeMan says...

I'll make sure I don't travel with Wighlight in the future
I'll make sure I don't travel with Wighlight in the future CapeMan
  • Score: -7

2:00pm Sat 19 Jul 14

Charlie Bucket says...

CapeMan wrote:
I'll make sure I don't travel with Wighlight in the future
I'm sure they'll be crushed.
[quote][p][bold]CapeMan[/bold] wrote: I'll make sure I don't travel with Wighlight in the future[/p][/quote]I'm sure they'll be crushed. Charlie Bucket
  • Score: 5

2:37pm Sat 19 Jul 14

southy says...

CapeMan wrote:
I'll make sure I don't travel with Wighlight in the future
Well not much choice as all the ferrys to the IOW use hanging decks now
[quote][p][bold]CapeMan[/bold] wrote: I'll make sure I don't travel with Wighlight in the future[/p][/quote]Well not much choice as all the ferrys to the IOW use hanging decks now southy
  • Score: 3

2:55pm Sat 19 Jul 14

Buffy500 says...

southy wrote:
CapeMan wrote:
I'll make sure I don't travel with Wighlight in the future
Well not much choice as all the ferrys to the IOW use hanging decks now
Apart from Red Funnel obviously.
[quote][p][bold]southy[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]CapeMan[/bold] wrote: I'll make sure I don't travel with Wighlight in the future[/p][/quote]Well not much choice as all the ferrys to the IOW use hanging decks now[/p][/quote]Apart from Red Funnel obviously. Buffy500
  • Score: 5

4:35pm Sat 19 Jul 14

richieroo says...

Buffy500 wrote:
southy wrote:
CapeMan wrote:
I'll make sure I don't travel with Wighlight in the future
Well not much choice as all the ferrys to the IOW use hanging decks now
Apart from Red Funnel obviously.
Nice one Buffy lol !. :-D
[quote][p][bold]Buffy500[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]southy[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]CapeMan[/bold] wrote: I'll make sure I don't travel with Wighlight in the future[/p][/quote]Well not much choice as all the ferrys to the IOW use hanging decks now[/p][/quote]Apart from Red Funnel obviously.[/p][/quote]Nice one Buffy lol !. :-D richieroo
  • Score: 2

8:55pm Sat 19 Jul 14

Micle1974 says...

RED Funnel 4 me!
RED Funnel 4 me! Micle1974
  • Score: 1

9:12pm Sat 19 Jul 14

bullsbags says...

Deffo red funnel for me . I would hate to have to drive through that vile place to get to the terminal
NOTICE FROM WIGHTLINK
we are sorry that a day return for a car and I passenger is now £100 bur we have had to do some unexpected maintenance
OUTRAGEOUS PRICES
Deffo red funnel for me . I would hate to have to drive through that vile place to get to the terminal NOTICE FROM WIGHTLINK we are sorry that a day return for a car and I passenger is now £100 bur we have had to do some unexpected maintenance OUTRAGEOUS PRICES bullsbags
  • Score: 0

10:03pm Sat 19 Jul 14

StJohn says...

I blame Gully
I blame Gully StJohn
  • Score: -1

11:08pm Sat 19 Jul 14

southy says...

richieroo wrote:
Buffy500 wrote:
southy wrote:
CapeMan wrote:
I'll make sure I don't travel with Wighlight in the future
Well not much choice as all the ferrys to the IOW use hanging decks now
Apart from Red Funnel obviously.
Nice one Buffy lol !. :-D
No even Red Funnel has a hanging deck
[quote][p][bold]richieroo[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Buffy500[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]southy[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]CapeMan[/bold] wrote: I'll make sure I don't travel with Wighlight in the future[/p][/quote]Well not much choice as all the ferrys to the IOW use hanging decks now[/p][/quote]Apart from Red Funnel obviously.[/p][/quote]Nice one Buffy lol !. :-D[/p][/quote]No even Red Funnel has a hanging deck southy
  • Score: -2

1:58pm Sun 20 Jul 14

seriarselyfedup says...

Where do they get 'NINE' vehicles from?????
There are more than that in the Photo!
Talk about 'Spin' and trying to lessen the severity of the accident. They should be ashamed of themselves.
The money Wightlink charge, all their Ferries should be brand new.
Where do they get 'NINE' vehicles from????? There are more than that in the Photo! Talk about 'Spin' and trying to lessen the severity of the accident. They should be ashamed of themselves. The money Wightlink charge, all their Ferries should be brand new. seriarselyfedup
  • Score: 1

2:04pm Sun 20 Jul 14

Charlie Bucket says...

bullsbags wrote:
Deffo red funnel for me . I would hate to have to drive through that vile place to get to the terminal
NOTICE FROM WIGHTLINK
we are sorry that a day return for a car and I passenger is now £100 bur we have had to do some unexpected maintenance
OUTRAGEOUS PRICES
And given your doubtless enormous experience with ferrying cars across the Solent, how much would YOU suggest it costs?
[quote][p][bold]bullsbags[/bold] wrote: Deffo red funnel for me . I would hate to have to drive through that vile place to get to the terminal NOTICE FROM WIGHTLINK we are sorry that a day return for a car and I passenger is now £100 bur we have had to do some unexpected maintenance OUTRAGEOUS PRICES[/p][/quote]And given your doubtless enormous experience with ferrying cars across the Solent, how much would YOU suggest it costs? Charlie Bucket
  • Score: -2

3:02pm Sun 20 Jul 14

Ozmosis says...

seriarselyfedup wrote:
Where do they get 'NINE' vehicles from?????
There are more than that in the Photo!
Talk about 'Spin' and trying to lessen the severity of the accident. They should be ashamed of themselves.
The money Wightlink charge, all their Ferries should be brand new.
The part that dropped had 9 vehicles on it. The middle section has the remainder and that didn't move.
[quote][p][bold]seriarselyfedup[/bold] wrote: Where do they get 'NINE' vehicles from????? There are more than that in the Photo! Talk about 'Spin' and trying to lessen the severity of the accident. They should be ashamed of themselves. The money Wightlink charge, all their Ferries should be brand new.[/p][/quote]The part that dropped had 9 vehicles on it. The middle section has the remainder and that didn't move. Ozmosis
  • Score: 2

5:12pm Sun 20 Jul 14

bullsbags says...

Charlie Bucket wrote:
bullsbags wrote:
Deffo red funnel for me . I would hate to have to drive through that vile place to get to the terminal
NOTICE FROM WIGHTLINK
we are sorry that a day return for a car and I passenger is now £100 bur we have had to do some unexpected maintenance
OUTRAGEOUS PRICES
And given your doubtless enormous experience with ferrying cars across the Solent, how much would YOU suggest it costs?
Having lived on the island for 51 years I would imagine I have a darn sight more experience of ferrying cars across the Solent as you put it than you do
Most of the time the fares are outrageous ,go on the WIGHTLINK website and look up the cost of booking a period return for a car and 2 passengers in the next 6 weeks
So unless you are in your late 50s and have lived on the island all your lifeWIND YOUR NECK IN
O and before you say it I can't move to the mainland due to business reasons
[quote][p][bold]Charlie Bucket[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]bullsbags[/bold] wrote: Deffo red funnel for me . I would hate to have to drive through that vile place to get to the terminal NOTICE FROM WIGHTLINK we are sorry that a day return for a car and I passenger is now £100 bur we have had to do some unexpected maintenance OUTRAGEOUS PRICES[/p][/quote]And given your doubtless enormous experience with ferrying cars across the Solent, how much would YOU suggest it costs?[/p][/quote]Having lived on the island for 51 years I would imagine I have a darn sight more experience of ferrying cars across the Solent as you put it than you do Most of the time the fares are outrageous ,go on the WIGHTLINK website and look up the cost of booking a period return for a car and 2 passengers in the next 6 weeks So unless you are in your late 50s and have lived on the island all your lifeWIND YOUR NECK IN O and before you say it I can't move to the mainland due to business reasons bullsbags
  • Score: 3

10:33am Mon 21 Jul 14

southy says...

southy wrote:
richieroo wrote:
Buffy500 wrote:
southy wrote:
CapeMan wrote:
I'll make sure I don't travel with Wighlight in the future
Well not much choice as all the ferrys to the IOW use hanging decks now
Apart from Red Funnel obviously.
Nice one Buffy lol !. :-D
No even Red Funnel has a hanging deck
I see that 1 person don't know or boarded a ferry with there eyes shut, if you look on Red Funnel Ferry's there is an hanging deck that get used when they are very busy, try looking up next time you board a red funnel ferry.
[quote][p][bold]southy[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]richieroo[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Buffy500[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]southy[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]CapeMan[/bold] wrote: I'll make sure I don't travel with Wighlight in the future[/p][/quote]Well not much choice as all the ferrys to the IOW use hanging decks now[/p][/quote]Apart from Red Funnel obviously.[/p][/quote]Nice one Buffy lol !. :-D[/p][/quote]No even Red Funnel has a hanging deck[/p][/quote]I see that 1 person don't know or boarded a ferry with there eyes shut, if you look on Red Funnel Ferry's there is an hanging deck that get used when they are very busy, try looking up next time you board a red funnel ferry. southy
  • Score: -1

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