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Accident Report Detail

Grounding of the Panamanian Passenger Ship Royal Majesty on Rose and Crown Shoal

Executive Summary

​About 2225 on June 10, 1995, the Panamanian passenger ship Royal Majesty grounded on Rose and Crown Shoal about 10 miles east of Nantucket Island, Massachusetts. The vessel, with 1,509 persons on board, was en route from St. George’s, Bermuda, to Boston, Massachusetts. Initial attempts to free the vessel were unsuccessful. Deteriorating weather and sea conditions prevented the evacuation of passengers and crewmembers from the vessel.

On June 11, the Royal Majesty, with the aid of five tugboats, was freed from its strand. Initial damage surveys revealed deformation of the vessel’s double bottom hull. However, no penetration or cracking of the hull was detected, and no fuel oil had been spilled. The U.S. Coast Guard gave the vessel permission to proceed to Boston. On June 12, the vessel arrived in Boston and disembarked its passengers. There were no deaths or injuries as a result of this accident. Damage to the vessel and lost revenue, however, were estimated at about $7 million.

Probable Cause

The NationalTransportation Safety Board determines that the probable cause of the grounding of the Royal Majesty was the watch officers’ overreliance on the automated features of the integrated bridge system, Majesty Cruise Line’s failure to ensure that its officers were adequately trained in the automated features of the integrated bridge system and in the implications of this automation for bridge resource management, the deficiencies in the design and implementation of the integrated bridge system and in the procedures for its operation, and the second officer’s failure to take corrective action after several cues indicated the vessel was off course.

Contributing factors were the inadequacy of international training standards for watchstanders aboard vessels equipped with electronic navigation systems and integrated bridge systems and the inadequacy of international standards for the design, installation, and testing of integrated bridge systems aboard vessels.

Accident Location: Nantucket , MA   Rose and Crown Shoal
Accident Date: 6/10/1995
Accident ID: DCA95MM042

Date Adopted: 4/2/1997
NTSB Number: MAR-97-01
NTIS Number: PB97-916401