A Workington man has been jailed for 66 weeks after a serious collision involving two fishing boats.
Craig Petre was sentenced at Hove Crown Court yesterday after a collision off Shoreham in Kent.
The 33-metre fishing vessel Oliva Jean, skippered by Petre, collided with the much smaller (nine-metre) Peter Paul II on the morning of April 4 last year.
The Olivia Jean was travelling at between eight and nine knots at the time of the collision in weather conditions that caused poor visibility.
Heavy steel beams used for fishing were unnecessarily down at either side of the Olivia Jean while she was travelling making the vessel almost 30 metres wide, the court heard.
One of these beams hit the Peter Paul II causing damage to the vessel.
An investigation was carried out by the Maritime and Coastguard Agency’s Regulatory Compliance Investigation Team who summonsed Petre for offences under Section 58 of the Merchant Shipping Act 1995 Conduct endangering ships, structures or individuals.
The 32-year-old pleaded guilty to the offence at a hearing at Lewes Crown Court on January 14.
At the time of this offence, Petre was serving a 48-week suspended sentence which the judge today added to an 18-week sentence given for the latest offence and the sentences will now run consecutively.
Mark Cam, lead investigation officer from the Maritime and Coastguard Agency, said: “Petre failed to heed several important international safety regulations at the time of the collision.
“The Olivia Jean was travelling at an unsafe speed for the weather conditions and Petre failed to maintain a proper lookout for other vessels.
“As a result, serious damage was caused to another vessel and the master of that vessel was also put at risk of serious injury or death.
“These regulations are there to ensure the safety of those at sea and it is unacceptable to breach them. We will always investigate and prosecute where necessary those who disregard regulations and put lives at risk.”