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Unstable Loads Led to Capsize of Golden Ray

September 27, 2020

PORT OF BRUNSWICK, GA- writes that last year, the Golden Ray capsized after leaving from Georgia's Port of Brunswick. An investigation into the incident led to evidence suggesting that the ship may have been loaded improperly, leaving is less stable on the water. A US Coast Guard lieutenant stated in a hearing this week that the Golden Ray was loaded with a top-heavy and unstable load.*

A naval architect stated that the accident may have been prevented had the load been rearranged or if another 1,500 gallons of water had been used in the ballast tank to serve as a counterweight.

The ship, a 656 foot-long cargo vessel, was carrying over 4,000 Kias and Hyundai, which were heading from Georgia to Baltimore. Even one year after the accident, the ship is still overturned, and hundreds of cars remain on board, long will tens of thousands of gallons of oil.

On the day of the accident, the crew was attempting to turn the vessel. An open door could have also contributed to the problem, but the load appears to be the main issue that caused the operators to lose control as the massive ship began to overturn.

The 24 crew members all survived. The captain of the ship stated that he anticipated a successful trip through the St. Simons Sound, which many other cargo ships use on a regular basis to transport goods.

In the near future, officials are looking to divide the ship into eight sections and to use barges to haul them away one section at a time.

It is likely that the process will be one of the most costly ship disasters ever in the United States. There are also environmental concerns about the possibility of the massive amount of oil on board leaking into the water.

Accident News is a safety and education initiative from Montlick & Associates, designed to help people better understand and thereby avoid common accident causes.  To learn more about our injury prevention programs, including - click here. We hope you are never in an accident, but if you or a family member are injured, call Montlick & Associates 24/7 for your free consultation at 1-800-LAW-NEED (1-800-529-6333) or use our live chat at


Category: Personal Injury

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Many of our blog articles discuss the law. All information provided about the law is very general in nature and should not be relied upon as legal advice. Every situation is different, and should be analyzed by a lawyer who can provide individualized advice based on the facts involved in your unique situation, and a consideration of all of the nuances of the statutes and case law that apply at the time.