Connect with us


MPA: S’pore-flagged ship in Baltimore bridge collision passed 2 inspections in 2023

MPA confirms Singapore vessel Dali in Baltimore collision passed 2 foreign port state inspections in 2023. Synergy Marine Group states 2 port pilots from Baltimore, 22 crew from India onboard Dali during accident.



Source: Baltimore County Police Department

UNITED STATES: The Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) revealed that the Singapore-flagged vessel involved in the Francis Scott Key Bridge collision in Baltimore on Tuesday (26 March) had successfully passed foreign port state inspections in both June and September 2023.

In a statement released on 27 March, MPA highlighted that during the June 2023 inspection, a faulty monitor gauge for fuel pressure had been rectified before the vessel departed the port.

MPA further stated that the vessel, named Dali, had been flagged with Singapore since October 2016 and is classified by the renowned classification society, ClassNK.

“Classification societies are generally authorised by a flag administration to monitor compliance to technical standards and the applicable regulations by vessels registered under its flag.”

“Based on records, MPA confirms that the vessel’s required classification society and statutory certificates covering the structural integrity of the vessel and functionality of the vessel’s equipment were valid at the time of the incident.”

MPA indicated that Dali’s next classification and statutory surveys are scheduled for June 2024.

The Dali, a 95,000 gross ton container vessel flying the Singapore flag, was operated by Synergy Marine Group, headquartered in Singapore.

Dali collided with one of the pillars of the four-lane bridge in the eastern US port city at approximately 1:30 am local time (1:30 pm Singapore time) on 26 March, leading to the bridge’s collapse.

Tragically, six people were presumed dead following the collision, as rescue efforts were halted.

Two individuals were rescued from the Patapsco River, with one reported to be in critical condition.

On the night of 26 March, MPA confirmed that it had reached out to the US Coast Guard, the Office of Marine Safety, and the National Transportation Safety Board to offer assistance as the flag administration.

Additionally, investigators from Singapore’s Transport Safety Investigation Bureau and MPA were en route to Baltimore to provide support for the ongoing investigations.

22 Indian national crew members onboard reportedly uninjured

According to a spokesman from Synergy Marine Group quoted in the Singapore state media, the Straits Times, the two port pilots onboard the Dali during the accident are local residents of Baltimore, while the 22 crew members are all Indian nationals.

The spokesman stated that Synergy is responsible for the recruitment and management of the crew aboard the Dali, all of whom are safe and have not reported any injuries.

He further mentioned that Synergy personnel are present at the site to aid US authorities with their inquiries, affirming the company’s full cooperation.

Synergy Marine Group, as per its website, operates 28 offices worldwide and manages 668 vessels, employing 24,000 seafarers globally.

CNN: Synergy Marine Group linked to three deadly incidents since 2018

According to CNN, ships under Synergy Marine Group’s management have been implicated in at least three fatal incidents since 2018, as per investigations and statements from authorities in Australia, Singapore, and the Philippines.

In 2018, a person onboard a Synergy-managed vessel in Australia died in an accident involving the ship’s personnel elevator, according to a report from the Australian Transportation Safety Bureau.

In 2019, an officer on a Synergy-registered vessel in Singapore went missing, likely having fallen overboard while performing inspection or cleaning tasks, as per a report by Singapore’s Transport Safety Investigation Bureau.

The report highlighted that conducting a risk assessment before the officer’s tasks could have identified potential hazards, leading to the inclusion of appropriate safety measures.

The report noted that if a risk assessment had been completed before the officer started their work it might have identified the risks involved and “the appropriate level of safety measures would have been included.”

In 2023, at least one sailor was killed when a Synergy Marine-managed tanker collided with a dredging ship in the Philippines, causing it to capsize, as reported by the Philippines Coast Guard.

US President Biden commits federal funding for bridge reconstruction

CNN reported US President Joe Biden‘s declaration that he intends for the federal government to fully finance the reconstruction of the collapsed bridge.

He emphasized that the responsibility cannot wait for the company owning the container ship DALI to cover the expenses.

ABC News, citing an unclassified US intelligence report, disclosed that the ship’s crew had forewarned Maryland officials of the impending disaster.

“The vessel notified Maryland Department of Transportation that they had lost control of the vessel and a collision with the bridge was possible,” revealed a statement from the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency.

Despite desperate attempts to avert the crash, including dropping the ship’s anchors, the Dali struck the bridge, resulting in its catastrophic collapse.

The Francis Scott Key Bridge, a vital conduit for commuters and commercial traffic aiming to bypass downtown Baltimore, now lies partially submerged.

The disruption threatens severe logistical and economic repercussions, potentially hindering the supply chain and inflating costs for a range of commodities, from automobiles to coal.

Local and state officials have been vocal in their response to the disaster. Baltimore Mayor Brandon Scott depicted the aftermath as “something out of an action movie… something you never thought you’d see.”

Meanwhile, Maryland Governor Wes Moore, recognizing the urgency of the situation, declared a state of emergency to facilitate the rapid deployment of federal resources.

He lauded the preemptive actions taken just before the collision, stating, “These people are heroes. They saved lives last night,” referencing the decisive steps that mitigated further loss of life.

The bridge’s collapse not only represents a significant loss of infrastructure but also poses substantial environmental and economic challenges.

Share this post via:
Continue Reading
Notify of
Oldest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Pass foreign port inspection?
Definitely kelong outside lah, just like KOM ,many many ways to kelong in many other countries.
But will any local executives be charged?
Nah, why not?
Ask the 6 handsome gentlemen at KOM to get some answers loh!😆😆😆😆

If such a calamity can pass multiple inspections, then maybe the problem is not with the ship, but with MPA. And this is where the investigation should be focused on. MPA investigating itself? This is a Singapore expertise that exists no where else in the world. MPA should be relieved that its investigation into itself is in good hands 😉

An inspection is just a piece of paper.

As they say, “The Proof is in the pudding.”

Clearly the crew was poorly trained to respond to emergencies.

With all the disruptions to global shipping, I think we’ll see more of these ships failing as companies cut corners to deal with shrinking margins.

So, … it’s passed 2 inspections !!!

Meaning it’s seaworthy, ship~shape but, … what about human error or catastrophic and untimely collapse of main engine or lapses in sop or sheer bad luck !!!

Not much point in harking on about the ship having passed 2 inspections is there, … which certainly ain’t much consolation to the dearly departed.

So, … it’s passed 2 inspections !!!

Well, the ship passed inspections, the bridge on the other hand obviously didn’t 🙂 The US better hope this incident doesn’t inspire “terrorists” to try this with other bridges. A Houthi commandeered ship might take out the Golden Gate bridge …

The world beginning to realise what is really punching above its weight – how come law makers in SG are paid astronomical salaries, perhaps unsurprising many would scram to want to be Millionaire Politicians in SG. So lucrative and minimal accountability, as in the world’s ONLY NO BLAME CULTURE nation.

Nice…let it burnt…anything here with and here in is also comfort.. still World number 1 in everything

Port pilot on board also no use. Machinery failure on such a giant will lead to catastrophe.
MAIB will have to investigate the logs and maintenance record of the critical equipment that led to this event.
Sad for the loss of life.