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Lorries at sea – urgent safety advice

Urgent safety advice has been issued by the Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB) to all lorry drivers who use ferries.


This follows an incident where lorries toppled over on a ferry vehicle deck while at sea, with drivers still in their cabs. One driver was trapped and had to be freed by emergency services.

International Regulations

International regulations prohibit passengers, including lorry drivers, from staying on the vehicle decks when at sea.

The MAIB is warning that:

  • while a ferry is at sea, the roll on, roll off decks should be occupied by only trained professional seafarers who are required to undertake safety and security patrols
  • drivers who remain on the vehicle deck pose a danger to themselves and can cause delay in emergency response
  • drivers who remain in their vehicle cabs could be in danger of asphyxiation by fire, or as a result of the fire suppression systems that may be released by ship’s staff