Drunk Russian Ran 7K-Ton Ship Aground in Scotland

At full speed, because why do things in half-measures?
By Polly Davis Doig,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 23, 2015 12:00 PM CST

Did you hear the one about the drunk Russian sailor who walked into a bar and ... no, wait, this particular Russian sailor downed half a liter of rum, got behind the controls of a 7,000-ton ship, and proceeded at full speed to plow it directly into a tough-to-spot little rock we like to call Scotland, reports CNN in what sounds more like a bar story than a news story. Such was the plight of the Lysblink Seaways when it ran aground on Feb. 18 in western Scotland's Ardnamurchan peninsula, the UK's Marine Accident Investigation Branch found in a report last week. Bad weather further drove the ship aground, damaging the hull, spilling 25 tons of marine gas oil, and resulting in it being declared an utter loss.

The 36-year-old officer in question—who's been relieved of his duties—became "inattentive ... due to the effects of alcohol consumption," per the report. Further, despite a ship-wide ban on alcohol, the officer was found after the accident to have a blood-alcohol content almost eight times the legal limit—a feat facilitated by the presence of an on-board store that the report says "was regularly replenished, and empty beer, wine and spirit bottles and cartons found on board after the accident indicated significant levels of alcohol consumption by the crew." And finally, "although a radar watch alarm had sounded every 6 minutes, the somnolent officer was able to reset the alarm without leaving his chair," the report says, via the Independent. (More alcohol is bad for you stories.)

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