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Marine transportation safety investigation M19A0228

Table of contents


BBC Oregon
Bay Bulls, Newfoundland and Labrador

The occurrence

On 30 June 2019, the 138.5 m cargo vessel BBC Oregon, with 13 people on board, departed Bay Bulls, Newfoundland and Labrador, after discharging a partial load of pipe. Weather conditions were favourable with clear skies, winds from the south-southeast at 4 to 6 knots, seas of less than 0.3 m, and visibility of 2 nautical miles. There was no marine pilot on board, nor was one required.

Shortly after the master of the BBC Oregon manoeuvred the vessel away from the dock, the vessel’s bow grounded on the shore 0.2 nautical miles south-southwest of the dock, which breached the vessel’s bottom. Water then flooded the vessel’s emergency fire pump compartment. The master stopped the engine and bow thruster, and the crew took soundings around the vessel to determine the water depth. Approximately 90 minutes later, the rising tide freed the vessel, which began to drift to the north. Both of the vessel’s anchors were dropped, but the anchors did not prevent the vessel from drifting stern first into a rock breakwater approximately 150 m southwest of the dock, where the vessel stopped. A marine pilot boarded the vessel, and 2 tugs towed it into the bay to anchor.

The BBC Oregon remained at anchor in the bay where a local company completed repairs to stop the water ingress. Once repaired, the vessel departed for Tanager, Norway.

Media materials

Deployment notice


TSB deploys a team to Bay Bulls, Newfoundland and Labrador, following the grounding of the cargo vessel BBC Oregon

Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, 2 July 2019 – The Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) is deploying a team of investigators to Bay Bulls, Newfoundland and Labrador, where the cargo vessel BBC Oregon grounded. The TSB will gather information and assess the occurrence.

Investigation information

Map showing the location of the occurrence


Photo of Gerard Kruithof

Gerard Kruithof has been a senior marine investigator at the Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) since 2017. Prior to joining the TSB, he worked at Transport Canada for eight years as a senior marine safety inspector. He was also a surveyor with Lloyd’s Register for three years.

Mr. Kruithof has ten years' sailing experience on several types of foreign-going ships and holds a First Class Marine Engineer's Certificate for motor vessels.

  Download high-resolution photos from the TSB Flickr page.

Class of investigation

This is a class 5 investigation. Class 5 investigations are limited to collecting data, which are then stored in the modal database. If TSB investigators deployed to the occurrence site, a short description of the occurrence is posted to the TSB website once the investigation has been completed. These investigations are generally completed within 90 days. For more information, see the Policy on Occurrence Classification.

TSB investigation process

There are 3 phases to a TSB investigation

  1. Field phase: a team of investigators examines the occurrence site and wreckage, interviews witnesses and collects pertinent information.
  2. Examination and analysis phase: the TSB reviews pertinent records, tests components of the wreckage in the lab, determines the sequence of events and identifies safety deficiencies. When safety deficiencies are suspected or confirmed, the TSB advises the appropriate authority without waiting until publication of the final report.
  3. Report phase: a confidential draft report is approved by the Board and sent to persons and corporations who are directly concerned by the report. They then have the opportunity to dispute or correct information they believe to be incorrect. The Board considers all representations before approving the final report, which is subsequently released to the public.

For more information, see our Investigation process page.

The TSB is an independent agency that investigates air, marine, pipeline, and rail transportation occurrences. Its sole aim is the advancement of transportation safety. It is not the function of the Board to assign fault or determine civil or criminal liability.