Report Claims Viking Sky Did Not Meet Safety Standards and Should Not Have Departed

Five years after the Viking Sky cruise ship incident, the Norwegian Safety Investigation Authority issued a critical report, blaming the cruise line, operational managers, design, shipyard, and classification society. The ship, with insufficient oil in its tanks, blacked out during a storm, nearly grounding in a potential disaster at sea. The report calls for industry-wide actions to prevent future incidents.
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The Norwegian Safety Investigation Authority (NSIA) issued a critical report on Viking’s cruise ship Viking Sky, which blacked out during a storm and nearly grounded five years ago. The report blames an insufficient level of oil in the ship’s tanks and cites possible SOLAS violations, stating the ship should not have departed Tromso. The incident had the potential to be a major disaster at sea, with passengers evacuated by helicopter and the ship eventually limping into port.

The NSIA report identifies operational, technical, and organizational safety issues contributing to the blackout, involving Viking, Wilhelmsen Ship Management, Fincantieri, and Lloyd’s Register. They call for actions from the IMO and the International Association of Classification Societies to prevent similar incidents in the future. The report also highlights insufficient training as a factor in the time-consuming blackout recovery.

The Norwegian Maritime Authority agrees with the report’s core findings but disagrees on certain points, such as the vessel’s compliance with SOLAS regulations. NSIA issued 14 safety recommendations, including strengthening design processes, ensuring compliance with SOLAS, and implementing reviews of the oil monitoring system. They call for action from Fincantieri, Lloyd’s Register, the shipowner, operator, IMO, and IACS to prevent similar incidents in the future.

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