Marine safety investigations & reports

Grounding of the bulk carrier Bulk India during departure from Dampier, WA, on 11 March 2018

Investigation number:
Status: Active
Investigation in progress
Phase: Final report: Internal review Read more information on this investigation phase


The ATSB is investigating the grounding under pilotage involving the Panama-registered dry bulk carrier Bulk India during departure from Dampier, Western Australia on 11 March 2018.

On 11 March, 2018, the fully laden Bulk India was departing Dampier under the conduct of a Dampier harbour pilot. At about 1430 hours (local time, UTC +8 hours), as the ship was approaching channel marker No5, a full electrical blackout occurred. All power was lost to the ship's propulsion and also to steerage.

At the time, the pilot was giving course directions to the helmsman. The helm was at 20° Port when control was lost. The ship, no longer under power, turned to port and grounded at a speed of about 6 knots. The Dampier Vessel Traffic Service was contacted and additional tugs requested for assistance.

At 1445, three tugs arrived. At 1449, electrical power was restored and by 1600, Bulk India was free of the bottom. The ship was then taken to anchorage for further inspection and investigation.

As part of the investigation, the ATSB will obtain information and recordings from the ship, company and pilots, and will interview directly involved parties as appropriate.

A report will be released at the end of the investigation. Should a critical safety issue be identified during the course of the investigation, relevant parties will be immediately notified so that appropriate safety action can be taken.

General details
Date: 11 March 2018   Investigation status: Active  
Time: 1430 WST   Investigation level: Defined - click for an explanation of investigation levels  
Location   (show map): Dampier   Investigation phase: Final report: Internal review  
State: Western Australia    
  Occurrence category: Incident  
Report status: Pending   Highest injury level: None  
Anticipated completion: 1st Quarter 2020    

Vessel details

Vessel details
Operator Southern Route Maritime and Nissen Kaiun  
Vessel Bulk India  
Flag Panama  
IMO 9284271  
Sector Bulk carrier  
Type of operation Iron ore  
Damage to vessel Unknown  
Departure point Dampier, Western Australia  
Destination Qingdao, Shandong, People's Republic of China  
Last update 15 November 2019