NTSB: Misfiring cylinder led to fatal fire on Texas towboat


The following is a marine accident brief from the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB):

(WASHINGTON) — On July 14, 2016, the uninspected towing vessel The Admiral was moored alongside barges in the La Quinta Channel, Gulf Intracoastal Waterway, near Ingleside, Texas. About 1635, the vessel’s starboard main engine oversped and then exploded, causing a fire in the engine room. Two crewmembers who were in the engine room at the time of the explosion were severely burned; one subsequently died. Damage to the vessel was estimated at $300,000. No pollution was reported.

Probable cause

‚ÄčThe National Transportation Safety Board determines that the probable cause of the engine explosion and resulting fire aboard the towing vessel The Admiral was a misfiring cylinder that ignited lubricating oil in the sump of the engine.

Click here to view the complete accident report.

By Professional Mariner Staff