Details Released on Cargo Ship That was Sunk in Hurricane Jaoquin

Throughout the investigation, MBI relied heavily on tours and photographs of El Faro’s sister ship, El Yunque, in order to understand the internal configuration of the Ponce class vessels and operational and maintenance issues that could have had an impact. (Image from the El Faro Marine Board of Investigation Document Library)

On Sunday Oct. 1, The U.S. Coast Guard Marine Board of Investigation released the details of the sinking of cargo ship El Faro, which encountered Hurricane Jaoquin while carrying cargo from Jacksonville, FL to San Juan, Puerto Rico in 2015. At that time considered the worst maritime disaster in 40 years, the sinking ship resulted in the loss of 33 lives.

When El Faro departed port on Sept. 29, 2015, the ship was carrying a full load of cargo containers and the storm was a tropical weather system east of the Bahamas. Once developed into Hurricane Jaoquin, the storm was difficult to track and the ship steered directly into the Hurricane. At 5:30 a.m. on the morning of Oct. 1, 2015, El Faro started taking on water and eventually lost propulsion.

Read more details on the investigation including transcripts, biographies and ship stability and structures reports at the U.S. Coast Guard’s El Faro Marine Board of Investigation.

Or read the full PDF report of the investigation with executive summary and findings.

A diagram of a flooding free surface effect, from the ship stability and structures reports of the El Faro Marine Board of Investigation Document Library.




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