Marine MO-2005-212

Restricted limit passenger vessel, Milford Sovereign, loss of directional control, Milford Sound, 20 November 2005, (incorporating inquiry 06-206)
Status: Closed
Legacy Inquiry Number: 
05-212
Occurrence Date: 
20 November 2005
Report Publication Date: 
23 August 2007
Jurisdiction: NZ
On Saturday 20 November 2005 at about 1400, the restricted limit passenger vessel Milford Sovereign, with a Master, 10 crew and 238 passengers on board, was on a cruise of Milford Sound when it was struck by a gust of wind that heeled the ship and turned it from its intended course. The Master was unable to return the ship to its original course, so decided to continue the turn initiated by the wind and took the ship through 180 onto the reciprocal of its original course and returned the ship to the inner Sound.

On the return journey, while travelling between Dale Point and Copper Point, further gusts of wind struck the ship causing it to again deviate from its intended course. When abeam of Copper Point, the wind eased and the Master regained full control and decided to complete the final part of the shortened cruise. The ship returned safely to its berth at Fresh Water Basin without further incident.

There were no injuries and the ship did not sustain any damage, but the potential for a major occurrence involving a large number of people did exist.

Report includes inquiry 06-206
Related Safety Recommendation(s):
Location: 
Milford Sound (-44.6024,167.8176) [may be approximate]