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The Investigations Department’s overarching objective is to eliminate marine casualties. We work alongside our owners so that together we can make sure that lessons learned from a casualty are implemented, reducing the likelihood of recurrence. We do this by ensuring that all marine casualties, whether within Bahamian waters or involving Bahamas vessels anywhere in the world, receive access to our extensive investigative experience to identify what, why and how a casualty occurred. Our skilled team of mariners examine all occurrences, no matter how minor. The information obtained through this analysis is used to identify trends which we then share amongst The Bahamas fleet to improve safety.

The Investigations Department is responsible for:

  • Carrying out investigations to determine the cause of marine casualties and marine incidents
  • Publishing marine safety investigation reports that include recommendations and lessons learned to improve safety
  • Increasing awareness of how marine casualties happen
  • Determining where possible what changes in the present regulations might be desirable
  • Improving national and international co-operation in marine safety investigations

Accurate and timely reporting by owners, managers and masters remains vital to ensure the appropriate response can be mounted by the Investigations Department. The success of any investigation rests on the cooperation and information provided by all parties involved. Marine casualties should be reported to the Investigations Department without hesitation and in accordance with The Bahamas Merchant Shipping Act.

Guiding Principle

The Bahamas has a responsibility to the international community, to our owners and the International Maritime Organisation to conduct independent and objective marine safety investigations that remain free from prejudice.

Purpose of a Marine Safety Investigation

A marine safety investigation means an investigation or inquiry, into a marine casualty or marine incident, conducted with the objective of preventing marine casualties and marine incidents from reoccurring. The investigation incorporates the collection and analysis of evidence to identify causal and contributory factors to determine lessons to be learned and the development of safety recommendations as necessary.

Quick Links


Contact a member of the Investigations Department for assistance with all reporting and investigations enquiries:

Phone: +44 (0) 20 7562 1300
Email: [email protected]


Please contact the BMA Emergency Response Officer at:
Phone: +44 20 3869 8748

If the Duty Officer is not available or does not return your call in 15 minutes:
Emergency Email: [email protected]

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