ISTANBUL – TDN with wire dispatches

The founder of the Gisan shipyard said he had no responsibility in an accident that occurred in Istanbul's Tuzla district earlier this month, the Anatolia news agency reported Monday. The accident, which resulted in the deaths of three workers and injured 12 on Aug. 11, occurred when a lifeboat was tested with workers inside instead of sandbags�I've done this job for 48 years and I don't know about sandbags. Sandbags are not used in those tests,� said Mehmet Oyar, founder of the Gisan shipyards. Oyar declared it normal to use human beings instead of sandbags to test the lifeboats, reported daily Radikal yesterday.
Oyar, 88, said that although the shipyards take all necessary measures, accidents occur and claimed that he was not responsible for the deaths. �The ship has a 19-person capacity and if there are not any tests such an accident may occur when the ship is on the sea. Then, all 19 passengers on the ship would die,� said Oyar, adding that he is very sorry for those who died in the accident. �They were like my sons; we were eating together when I visit the shipyard. I cried for days after the accident.�
The founder of the Gisan shipyards said he holds inexperienced workers responsible for the accidents. �Unskilled workers work in the shipyards. I watched on TV that workers stand underneath a man who welds the irons; it is like they do this on purpose,� said Oyar. He also claimed that Turk Loydu, a classification and certification society of the shipping sector, gave permission to test the lifeboat using people.
Meanwhile, the Chamber of Ship Engineers, or GMO, under the Union of Chambers of Turkish Engineers and Architects, or TMMOB, said they conducted an investigation into the lifeboat accident. �There is something not suiting the construction project of the vessel at the point where the lifeboat fell off the vessel into the sea. The lifeboat has touched to that point which should not happen,� said Muzaffer Erdal Kılıç, the head of GMO.
He said they would announce the conclusion of their investigations in detail Wednesday. �The lifeboat has a Norwegian company name on it,� said Kılıç when asked whether it was made in China or not.