Industrial ship capstans are used to increase or decrease the pulling force used by seamen on ropes, chains and cables that control various weighted objects on the ship. They are also used to lower and raise the anchor. Capstans work by using a vertical rotating drum to create multiple of of the force that is applied to it. Although these devices were used manually years ago, many modern day ships have electric capstans that function without the need of manual intervention.
Most ship capstans accidents result from a failure of the gear that turns the shaft. These failures can be due to many factors, including wear and tear, misuse, and poor design.
Gear failures are one of the most common causes of ship capstan accidents. Gear failures can occur due to a number of reasons, including wear and tear, misuse, and poor design. Poorly designed gear can cause excessive wear on the teeth or shafts, which can lead to a gear failure. Gear failures can also occur due to misalignment or improper fitment of the gears.
Another common cause of ship capstan accidents is inadequate lubrication. Lubrication is essential for preventing gear failure due to friction. If there is not enough lubrication, the gears will start to rub against each other, which will eventually cause a gear failure.
Finally, ship capstan accidents can also be caused by natural disasters such as hurricanes and earthquakes. These events can damage the ships’ systems and equipment, which can lead to gear failures.
Other types of capstan accidents that have been reported include:
1. The accidental release of the capstan drive belt or pulley system, which can cause the ship to quickly lose speed and become uncontrollable.
2. The failure of the capstan mechanism itself, which can cause the machinery to jam and potentially lead to a vessel collision.
3. The incorrect installation or maintenance of the capstan, which can lead to its malfunctioning or even its complete collapse.
If you have been injured by a ship capstan, contact an attorney. Ship capstans can cause serious injury and should be avoided if possible. An attorney can help you determine whether you have a valid case and protect your rights.