Pioneering model experiments to study the danger of wave action flooding the deck of damaged RO-RO ferries were carried out by Bird and Browne in the 1970's. Following the loss of the Herald of Free Enterprise in 1987 there was renewed interest in the subject, with studies in the United Kingdom and Denmark. Following this work, a further series of experiments was carried out in Canada, at the Institute for Marine Dynamics (IMD), with the prime objective of investigating the effectiveness of the SOLAS 90 regulations. The experiments at IMD used a two-dimensional prismatic model to understand the process and provide data for validating numerical simulations. A key feature in the experiments carried out at IMD was the desire to measure the volume of water on the deck at all times during the flooding and capsize process. The design of the model, the data collected during the experiments and the methods of analysis are discussed in general terms. Finally recommendations are made for improving the techniques for use in future studies.

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