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Maritime RCA / Incident Investigation


Save 10% on public training courses scheduled through July 31st, 2020. Registration and payment must be processed by June 3rd, 2020. This discount cannot be combined with any other offer(s). See also 15% Team Discount.

This 2-day course is designed for personnel who seek an efficient way to conduct a thorough investigation of complex incidents to help identify underlying causes and make effective recommendations. This course applies the process outlined in ABS Guidance Notes on the Investigation of Marine Incidents; training satisfies TMSA Element 8 and DPA Element 3. The ABS process helps attendees efficiently and effectively gather data and apply straightforward techniques for identifying causal factors and root causes. test


Who Should Attend this course?
  • Personnel who may be required to investigate or participate in the investigation of complex incidents, including ship captains, chief engineers, port captains / superintendents, vessel / fleet managers, technical department managers, safety directors / managers or their equivalent
what will i learn in this course?
  • Learn how to investigate complex incidents and identify root causes, not just causal factors, using proven techniques; meets requirements of TMSA Element 8 and DPA Element 3
  • Receive valuable materials: course book with complete solutions to example problems; the ABS Guidance Notes on Investigation of Marine Incidents; the ABS Marine RCA Map™; and a compact disc containing: the previously mentioned material, an Excel® template for documenting the analysis techniques taught in class, and an electronic toolkit of forms, checklists, and other documents that can aid investigators in managing the investigation of a complex incident
Duration: 2 days

Dates & Locations

Start/End Dates Location Information Register
01 Jun - 02 Jun 2020 ABS Consulting | Arlington, VA
Location/Hotel Information
14 Dec - 15 Dec 2020 ABS Group | Spring, TX
Location/Hotel Information


Day 1: 8:00 am to 4:00 pm
  • Basics of Incident Investigation
    • Three principles for achieving operations excellence
    • Root cause/management system approach to RCA
    • Terminology: causal factors, root cause, management system, safeguard
    • Workshop: Identifying causal factors and root causes
    • Selecting the suitable level of analysis for incidents
  • Initiating Investigations
    • Who does what
    • Notification
    • Emergency response activities
    • Immediate investigation activities
    • Beginning the investigation
  • Gathering and Preserving Data
    • Types of data
    • Prioritizing data gathering
    • Discussion of each data type
    • Workshop: Interview questions
    • Data collection planning
    • Workshop: Data checklist development
  • Analyzing Data
    • Overall goal and major analysis steps
    • Applicability of analysis techniques
    • Discussion of timeline technique
      • Capabilities and limitations
      • Structure and elements
      • Procedural steps – important things to remember
      • Demonstration
      • Workshop
Day 2: 8:00 am to 4:00 pm
  • Identifying Root Causes
    • Introduction
    • Discussion of 5-whys technique
      • Capabilities and limitations
      • Structure and elements
      • Procedural steps – important things to remember
      • Demonstration
      • Workshop
    • ABS Marine Root Cause Analysis Map
      • Discussion
      • Workshop: Identifying root causes
    • Documenting root causes
  • Developing Recommendations
    • Key concepts
    • Types, levels, and time frames
    • Process steps for making recommendations
    • Stating and presenting recommendations in report [3]
    • Managing recommendations – resolution
  • Completing the investigation
    • Items in the report, tips for writing the report


James Rooney - Director of Training Services - Safety, Risk & Compliance

Mr. Lee Vanden-Heuvel - Manager of Incident Investigation/Root Cause Analysis Services, ABS Group

Related Links

  • Download the ABS Guidance Notes on Investigation of Marine Incidents and Supplements that include the ABS Marine RCA Map and Excel templates that can be used to document analytical techniques addressed in the course. The training and these tools will help you perform efficient and effective analyses.
  • Purchase the 580-page ABS Guidance Notes on Investigation of Marine Incidents (ABS Publication 142) by emailing your request to
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