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SHIPPING & MARINE | Staff Reporter, Singapore

Jurong shipyard fined $230,000 over safety lapses causing fatality

One worker died due to a shortage of clearance distance in 2015.

Sembcorp Marine’s Jurong Shipyard is penalised by the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) with a $230,000 fine for the death of a worker in 2015 due to being struck and caught between a gantry crane and manifold, MOM said in a press statement.

Then safety coordinator and patrol man of Jurong’s subcontractor Foo Ngan Marine, Stephen Yeo Chye Mong died in the company’s 5 Jalan Samulun site. 

Based on MOM-led investigations, Jurong Shipyard’s failure came from lifting operations using the gantry cane.

According to the findings, the company also failed to appoint a banksman to ensure that the travelling path of the gantry crane during operations is vacated.

Aside from this, the company was also short of visual warning signs to inform workers to stay out of the lifting zone during operations. There was also an insufficient passageway clearance between the gantry crane track and the utility water supply manifold.

"These failures made the workplace dangerous, and also resulted in the accident, which led to the death of the deceased," the MOM said. 

Whilst the standard Code of Practice recommended the clearance distance to be at 750mm, MOM found that there were only 430 mm in the case of Jurong Shipyard’s clearance distance.

"In fact, the measured distance was only 80 mm when the leg of the gantry crane moved past the utility water supply manifold along its track," the MOM said.

"A worker unfortunately paid the price with his life," MOM occupational safety and health inspectorate head Sebastian Tan said. 

The victim was conducting safety checks near the manifolds along the track of a gantry crane when he got into the accident in 20 March 2015.
He was lifting pieces of rolled up welding cables. A few minutes after, he was found lying on the ground between a utility water supply manifold and the gantry crane track by his co-worker.

At the time, Yeo was lifting pieces of rolled up welding cables. Shortly after, a co-worker found Yeo lying on the ground between a utility water supply manifold and the gantry crane track.

Although he was taken to the hospital, Yeo did not survive.

In January 2018, Jurong Shipyard was also fined $230,000, due to the death of two workers that fell 30m from a cherry picker. Another penalty of $400,000 was incurred by the company in November 2017 for a 2012 incident that injured 89 peope due to an oil rig tilted.

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