Contractor falls 30 feet into empty water tank of ship in Locust Point

A 58-year-old contractor was seriously injured in a 30-foot fall into an empty ballast water tank on a U.S. Navy Ready Reserve Fleet ship in Locust Point on Wednesday morning, officials said.

The man injured his femur in the fall, which happened about 8:30 a.m. aboard the Denebola, a 947-foot Algol-class vehicle cargo ship docked at North Locust Point Marine Terminal, according to the Maryland Port Administration and Baltimore Fire Department.

A rescue crew removed the man from the water tank, and he was taken to a hospital. He was reported to be conscious and stable, Maryland Port Administration spokesman Richard Scher said. His name was not released.

The Maritime Administration, which is listed as the custodian for the 44-year-old ship, did not respond immediately to a request for comment.

Built in 1973 as a container ship for the U.S. line Sea-Land Service, the Denebola was acquired by the Navy in 1981 and converted for transporting military vehicles, which it did during the Persian Gulf War. Now operated by the Military Sealift Command in the reserve fleet, the ship can be deployed in four days.

cmcampbell@baltsun.com

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