COLLISION OF M/V STUD WITH THE SOUTHERN PACIFIC RAILROAD BRIDGE OVER THE ATCHAFALAYA RIVER BERWICK BAY, LOUISIANA APRIL 1, 1978. MARINE ACCIDENT REPORT

At 1756 c.s.t., on April 1, 1978 the four-barge tow of the Motor Vessel STUD collided with the eastern fixed span of the Southern Pacific Railroad bridge over the Atchafalaya River near Berwick Bay, Louisiana. The collision knocked the span from its supporting piers into the river but did not damage the barges. Damage to the STUD was estimated to be $4,000. Property damage was estimated to be $1,400,000, including the cost of replacing the bridge span and rerouting rail traffic for 8 days. There were no deaths or injuries. The National Transportation Safety Board determines that the probable cause of the accident was the failure of the master to properly align the underpowered tow on the approach north of the Berwick Bay bridges. Contributing to the cause were the inadequate criteria for commencing high water limitations in the Berwick Bay Vessel Traffic Service area, the inadequate horsepower of the STUD in relation to the towlength for maneuvering in the existing river conditions, and the fact that the master of the STUD did not have up-to-date information concerning the river stage and current velocity.

  • Corporate Authors:

    National Transportation Safety Board

    Bureau of Accident Investigation, 800 Independence Avenue, SW
    Washington, DC  United States  20594
  • Publication Date: 1980-3-28

Media Info

  • Pagination: 34 p.

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00312187
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: NTSB-MAR-80-5
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Jun 26 1980 12:00AM