MSAF to investigate the LP9 incident

January 10, 2024 6:30 am

The Maritime Safety Authority of Fiji will conduct an in-depth investigation into the Goundar Shipping Lomaiviti Princess 9 that hit a reef in Lomaloma Vanuabalavu last weekend.

Chief Executive Joeli Cawaki says that the vessel hitting a reef means it’s a navigational problem since all other boats have been going in and out of Vanua Balavu without hitting the reef.

He says that it all goes down to the management navigation and the captain of the Lomaiviti Princess 9 for that incident to occur.

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“For me as a former captain, I know that something is wrong with the navigation, so we will check their books; we will check if they have a chart and if they do the fixing at the right time—15 minutes of fixing while going into shallow waters and narrow channels. The practice for navigation is that we should be checking and fixing the position of the boat every 7, 10, or 15 minutes. Was that done?”

Cawaki believes that the boat has gone out of the channel and is hitting the reef, and every captain should be alert to the position of the vessel when going into the channel.

The Lomaiviti Princess 9, which hit a reef last Saturday, is currently berthed at the Lomaloma jetty in Vanuabalavu.