Linkspans and walkways

The collapse of a new ship-to-shore passenger walkway at Ramsgate in 1994 resulted in the death of 6 members of the public. This led to the publishing of the report 'RP 572 - Ship-to-shore Linkspans and Walkways' by the Construction Industry Research and Information Association (CIRIA).

This provided practical information for the ports industry and designers, contractors, operators and health and safety advisors involved in procurement, operation and maintenance of linkspans.

Although a considerable period of time has now passed since that specific incident, Sea France lost millions of pounds in 2005 following berth disruptions caused by a linkspan collapse in February of that year. More recently MAIB published a report into the collapse of a walkway at Heysham port in 2010 which recommends certain actions by the ports sector.

Further information

Design and operational considerations for ship-to-shore linkspans and walkways

There are many aspects which need to be considered at each stage during the installation and use of a ship-to-shore link. They are listed below under 7 headings:

The lists of questions are not exhaustive and should be regarded both as initial guidance and as supplementary to the planning and assessment required by The Construction Design and Management Regulations 2015(CDM Regulations) that will apply to most new projects.




Local environmental and operational considerations





Updated 2022-07-15