Former El Faro engineer: 'You lose a turbine, you're done'


(JACKSONVILLE, Fla.) — El Faro's former chief engineer testified Tuesday that a boiler failure might not have been the reason the TOTE ship lost propulsion before sinking during Hurricane Joaquin, CBS 47 News reported. The Coast Guard's Marine Board of Investigation asked James Robinson what Capt. Michael Davidson meant when he said “we've lost the main propulsion unit” in an emergency phone call. Robinson replied, “If he was talking (about) the propulsion, that would be the reduction gear and the turbines." Robinson said he had never seen a ship lose its turbines, but added, “You lose a turbine, you're done, you're not going to get propulsion back." He said both of the ship's boilers needed maintenance but none of the repairs were urgent.

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By Professional Mariner Staff