Marine safety investigations & reports

Equipment failure on board Australian registered bulk carrier Goliath

Investigation number:
Status: Completed
Investigation completed


Download Final Report
[Download  PDF: 1.83MB]

On 22 September 2002 the catastrophic failure of the main engine turbocharger disabled the cement carrier Goliath in Bass Strait. The replacement turbocharger failed in a similar manner on 12 February 2003, only four and a half months later, when Goliath was off Jervis Bay, again disabling the ship.

At 0107 on 22 September 2002, the Australian flag bulk cement carrier Goliath experienced a main engine turbocharger failure while the vessel was en route from Newcastle to Devonport when the turbocharger 'exploded' and disabled the ship's main engine.

At 1543 on 12 February 2003, while Goliath was en route from Devonport to Sydney, the turbocharger failed again. This time, the failure was witnessed by the second engineer who heard the rapid acceleration of the turbocharger before it exploded. Once again, the turbocharger had been damaged beyond repair and the ship was disabled.

The investigation report concludes that both turbocharger failures were similar and had occurred when the compressor discs burst due to overspeed. While it is not possible to state with certainty, the most likely mechanism leading to both overspeeds was a scavenge fire in the engine.

The ATSB delayed the release of these final investigation reports because of litigation involving the parties and because the investigations preceded and were not protected under the Transport Safety Investigation Act 2003.

Download Final Report
[Download  PDF: 1.83MB]
General details
Date: 22 September 2002   Investigation status: Completed  
Time: UTC+10    
Location: Bass Strait    
State: Victoria    
Release date: 21 June 2006   Occurrence category: Incident  
Report status: Final   Highest injury level: None  

Vessel details

Vessel details
Vessel Goliath  
Flag Aus  
IMO 9036430  
Type of operation Bulk carrier  
Damage to vessel Nil  
Departure point N/A  
Departure time N/A  
Destination N/A  
Last update 15 July 2016