Worker 'thrown from one side of bridge to other' when US Navy ship fell

Constantin Pogor sustained multiple injuries and was knocked unconscious when the MV Petrel toppled at Leith Docks in March.

Edinburgh dry dock ship worker ‘thrown from one side of bridge to other’ when US Navy vessel toppled @Tomafc83 /Twitter

A worker who passed out after suffering multiple injuries when a ship once owned by the co-founder of Microsoft toppled over in a dry dock has told how he was “thrown from one side of the bridge to the other” during the incident.

Constantin Pogor sustained a dislocated elbow and fractured pelvis when the US-Navy owned MV Petrel became dislodged at Edinburgh’s port of Leith in March.

The 48-year-old, who is now part of a clutch of colleagues seeking to launch civil action over their respective injuries, was knocked unconscious after colliding with a metal beam.

He has since sought his own legal advice into the matter and says he is now focused on his recovery.

The Romanian national said: “I heard a loud noise, felt movement and I just had this reflex reaction to try and hold onto something but I didn’t get to grab onto anything.

“I flew from one side of the bridge to the other and landed on my right side and hit my ribs on a metal beam.

“I must have passed out because I remember just sort of coming to – that’s when I realised my elbow was dislodged.

“A colleague then tried to move me – it was really painful and that’s when I realised that although I could move my legs, something was wrong in my hip.

“I still don’t even know what actually happened that day to cause the ship to fall.”

The incident resulted in a large-scale emergency response at the dry dock, which is operated by Dales Marine Services.

After the vessel tipped over, trauma teams, an air ambulance and the Coastguard, all worked for hours to rescue people off the ship.

The 3,371-tonne vessel has been moored at Imperial Dry Dock in Leith since September 3, 2020 due to “operational challenges” from the pandemic.

The 76m-long Petrel was once owned by the late Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen, who bought the ship to locate historically significant shipwrecks and discovered 30 sunken warships, including the Japanese Imperial Navy’s IJN Musashi.

However, in 2022 the Isle of Man-registered vessel was sold to the US Navy and is now operated by American-owned firm Oceaneering International.

Investigations are ongoing with the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) and Police Scotland into the incident.

Mr Pogor added: “I know Dales and HSE are involved in some kind of investigation and I’ve now sought my own lawyers to investigate independently on my behalf too and I think there’s a lot of other people onboard who’ve done the same.

“But I want to shed light on what happened to me just so people back home know I’m relatively okay.

“It was scary at the time – especially when you’re not able to speak the same language.

“But I’m being looked after now, have a translator and I’m focused on my recovery.”

A Digby Brown spokesman said: “We can confirm we are assisting a number of injured people affected by the Leith docks incident.

“Our enquiries are at an early stage so we cannot comment further on the specifics however we will continue to support and advise all affected people.”

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