The Panama-flagged Pegasus Highway was detained in the port of Tacoma (Wash.) for various safety deficiencies found during a Port State and International Ship and Port Facility Security Exam on September 9, 2015.

The most important deficiency and the main reason for the detainment is the deficiency involving the fire alarm detection system.

USCG detains Vehicles Carrier Pegasus Highway in Tacoma Port due to safety deficiencies

Image: Colin Hofman

According to the local Coast Guard authorities, the vessel will be required to remain in port until the deficiencies are rectified.

While aboard the 590-foot Roll on/ Roll off vessel, the USCG Port State Control exam team discovered multiple areas that did not meet regulations set forth in the Safety of Life at Sea Convention.

After the inspection USCG officials have found that the most severe deficiency involved a fire detection system that was found to be inoperable. Without a properly functioning fire detection system, a fire on a deck carrying vehicles could have burned without the crew receiving an early warning.

"Through the Port State Control Program, the Coast Guard verifies that foreign vessels calling on U.S. ports meet applicable U.S. and International regulations to protect people, property, and the environment." said Cmdr. Matt Edwards, chief of prevention at Sector Puget Sound.

“We will continue to work with the vessel's crew to ensure the deficiencies are corrected and the vessel is safe to resume trade.”

The inspection of the Port State Control exam team on board Pegasus Highway included checks of fire protection, life saving, machinery, navigation, and pollution control systems as well as assesses the crew's ability to respond to onboard emergencies.

According to the maritime law, a vessel that is determined to be substandard is subject to a detention and must remain in port until it can proceed to sea without presenting a danger to persons on board or without presenting an unreasonable threat of harm to the marine environment.