Diving support ship Bibby Topaz refloats after running aground in Lerwick Harbour

Click on image to enlarge.

A large diving support vessel has refloated herself after running aground off Lerwick Harbour. The 106-metre, 2,403 tonne Bibby Topaz hit rocks at Greenhead in the early hours of this morning.

The vessel had 100 people, including a pilot, onboard at the time of the incident, although no-one suffered any injuries. She was leaving the harbour bound for the Gryphon oilfield 110 miles east south east of Shetland.

The vessel, which went aground at the bow just off the shore at around 1.20am, had the assistance of a manoeuvring tug at the time.

This morning Shetland Coastguard said the ship’s owners were trying to arrange a tug to carry out a commercial tow and would wait for high tide after 2pm. However as the tide rose the vessel floated free at around 11.40am. She is now alongside again at Greenhead.

Lerwick Port Authority is to mount an investigation but chief executive Sandra Laurenson said that the cause of the accident was unknown.

She said: “The ship has suffered some damage to its hull and it does have a hole in a water ballast tank, but no damage occurred to any of the oil storage tanks.”

Ms Laurenson said there was no pollution as a reult of the accident.

A spokesman for Bibby Offhosre said: “The vessel will undergo a detailed inspection to assess any damage that might have been caused by the grounding. All the crew remain safe and well and there has been no incidence of any environmental damage or pollution. Bibby Offshore would like to thank the authorities for their assistance in this matter.”

The dive support ship also suffered a minor collision with a seismic vessel, the Ocean Explorer, in Lerwick harbour in September 2009 due to strong winds.


Add Your Comment
  • Vivian Long

    • April 8th, 2011 22:12

    I’m so happy that there were not any injuries. My son is on that vessel.


Add Your Comment

Please note, it is the policy of The Shetland Times to publish comments and letters from named individuals only. Both forename and surname are required.

Comments are moderated. Contributors must observe normal standards of decency and tolerance for the opinions of others.

The views expressed are those of contributors and not of The Shetland Times.

The Shetland Times reserves the right to decline or remove any contribution without notice or stating reason.

Comments are limited to 200 words but please email longer articles or letters to editorial@shetlandtimes.co.uk for consideration and include a daytime telephone number and your address. If emailing information in confidence please put "Not for publication" in both the subject line and at the top of the main message.

200 words left

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


Get Latest News in Your Inbox

Join the The Shetland Times mailing list to get one daily email update at midday on what's happening in Shetland.