John Strange


Emergency Response


John is head of the Shipping and Commercial Litigation Group and a member of our Emergency Response Team. He has in-depth experience of a range of maritime problems, in particular those concerning the cruise and ferry industry, superyachts and the offshore industry. He regularly advises shipowners, P&I clubs and underwriters on various issues including collision, salvage, insurance disputes and marine personal injury and fatality incidents where he is recognised as a market leader.

In recent years, with the increase in criminal sanctions, he has developed a particular expertise in guiding clients through investigations by the MAIB and HSE, and in defending prosecutions by the MCA Enforcement Unit and Police.

John is a member of the British Insurance Law Association.

Work Highlights

  • “AL SALAM BOCCACCIO 98” – Representing the owners and P&I Club in the investigation into the loss of the ferry “AL SALAM BOCCACCIO 98” that foundered in the Red Sea with the loss of 1,040 lives; the largest peacetime marine casualty outside the Far East.
  • “DANNY F” – Representing the P&I Club in respect of the loss of a cattle carrier that foundered in the Mediterranean with the loss of 70 lives and 35,000 head of cattle.
  • “SFS” – Assisting underwriters, in France and the UK, following the loss of the VOR 70 sailing yacht which was totally destroyed by fire.
  • “ALEXEY MARYSHEV” – An expedition vessel overwhelmed by a large wave thrown up by a carving glacier off Svalbard. Assisting her owners and P&I Club in dealing with multiple claims from passengers and from the tour operator.
  • “ST MALO” – A fast catamaran ferry that grounded on rocks off Jersey with 245 passengers onboard. Advising the carrier and their P&I Club in handling multiple claims brought by passengers, under the Athens Convention, and dealing with the indemnity claim against the owners.
  • “ESSO MERSEY” – Explosion of a product tanker during cargo discharge resulting in loss of life. Assisting owners in dealing with the subsequent investigation by the MAIB, Inquest and civil claims.
  • “ORIANA” – A passenger vessel was struck by a rogue wave. Assisting owners and their P&I Club in dealing with the resulting investigation and multiple claims in respect of passenger injuries.
  • “VOYAGER” – A passenger vessel that suffered complete immobilisation when struck by a wave in the Mediterranean during heavy weather. Assisting charterers and their P&I Club in pursuing claims against the owners arising from multiple injuries and breach of contract claims brought by passengers.


John read law at the University of Birmingham. He speaks fluent French, holds the Diplôme Supérieur de Droit et de Français des Affaires, and is admitted to the Paris Bar.

John Strange highlighted as a recommended Lawyer.
Legal 500 UK, 2019
John Strange highlighted as a recommended Lawyer.
Legal 500, 2017
John Strange heads the marine personal injury team at Thomas Cooper LLP, which ‘punches well above its size in the marine insurance market’
Legal 500