The master of a wind farm passenger vessel was fined on Friday following a collision with a floating military target back in 2012

The master of a wind farm passenger transfer

vessel was ordered to pay £9,702 in fines and costs on Friday after pleading

guilty to a breach of the Merchant Shipping Act 1995.

Michael Gallagher was skippering the

workboat catamaran Windcat 9 when it collided with a large floating military

target in Donna Nook air weapons range on 21 November 2012 near Grimsby.

The vessel, which was carrying 15

passengers at the time, is thought to have been travelling at around 23 knots

when it crashed, causing severe damage to the boat’s hull and resulting in

extensive flooding.

Luckily all of those on board were unhurt

following the incident.

An investigation by the Maritime and Coastguard

Agency (MCA) found Mr Gallagher was not keeping a proper lookout and had set

his electronic navigation equipment incorrectly.

The defendant pleaded guilty at Southampton

Magistrates Court to a breach of section 58 of the Merchant Shipping Act 1995,

leaving him with a fine of £1,500, and costs of £8,082, plus a victim surcharge

of £120.

Hull MCA marine office surveyor Gwen

Lancaster said: “Mr Gallagher should have kept a proper lookout at all times

using all available means to be competent in using all his electronic

navigational equipment.

“Luckily no one was hurt, but there could

have been multiple fatalities as a result of this high speed collision.”

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