Tuesday, July 3, 2018

Longview Accident Claims Longshoreman, Crew

By Karen Robes Meeks

A longshoreman and a crewmember lost their lives and two others were injured in a maritime accident at the Port of Longview early Thursday morning.

International Longshore Workers Union (ILWU) member Byron Jacobs, 34, died at the scene after one of the vessel lines on the M/V Ansac Splendor snapped in half and recoiled toward both the dock and the vessel while it tried to move along the dock from one loading hatch to another, according to port officials.

Three others sustained injuries, including the ship’s chief mate, Pingshan Li, who died later that night at Southwest Washington Medical Center.

"Our hearts are with his family and friends as we all grieve this tragic loss," said Port of Longview CEO Norm Krehbiel. "This is an unimaginable loss felt throughout both the maritime and local community."

ILWU Local 21 President Jake Ford said Thursday’s incident was “a tragic day on the waterfront," adding "Byron was an active member of the union, loved his work and will be incredibly missed.” The union also sent their profound condolences to Chief Mate Li’s family, friends and crewmates.

Meanwhile, the US Coast Guard and Washington State Labor and Industries are investigating the incident.