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ROV NEWS: Freight vessel with a mainly Filipino crew has capsized off southwestern Nor

Posted on 20.01.2004 - 03:41 EST in ROV NEWS by admin

mikeritson writes:  

This vessel had the EB rockdumping ROV on board!

OSLO (Reuters) - A freight vessel with a mainly Filipino crew has capsized off southwestern Norway and at least two seamen have been killed and 19 are missing, some of them trapped within the vessel, rescue officials say.

Boats and helicopters picked up nine survivors and were scouring the sea around the upturned vessel "Rocknes" near the western port of Bergen, a spokeswoman for the Joint Rescue Coordination Centre for southern Norway said on Monday.

The vessel, which capsized in a strait only a few hundred metres from shore, was lying steadily in shallow, calm waters, and officials said there was no apparent risk it would sink.

"Nine survived, two are dead, and 19 missing," spokeswoman Cecilie Watne said.

She said the crew comprised 23 seamen from the Philippines, three from the Netherlands, two from Norway, one from Germany, and the nationality of one could not be confirmed.

A hospital official said that the survivors were the crew's three Dutchmen and five of the Filipinos and one Norwegian.

Officials had not yet released the nationalities of the dead crew members.

The survivors were in fair condition after being treated for mild hypothermia ## the sometimes lethal loss of body temperature ## and one had a leg fracture, Bjarte Askerland, head of the intensive care unit at the hospital, said.

Coastguard and other vessels in the area were taking part in the rescue mission, but four helicopters had left the scene after participating earlier in the day.

Ten divers were at work around the vessel, and the rescue team was working to cut a hole in the hull to try to free possible survivors.

"They are now preparing to go into the ship," Watne said.

She added that two unmanned submarines were being brought in to help and booms had been set out in the water to contain any oil spill.

The Rocknes is a 166-metre (544 foot) cargo vessel owned by Jebsen Management and was carrying rock to Germany.

Odd Kjaergaard, an eye witness, who was looking out his window with binoculars when the ship tipped over, told Norwegian television: "While I was looking, it all of a sudden capsized in a matter of seconds. Rescue personnel were there a minute later.

"I saw one man being rescued, incredibly enough he had managed to get on top of the hull," he said.

Source: Reuters

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