Petty Officer Cruel Kev's Blog to honor our Sailors, Mariners, Marines, Coast Guardsmen, Airmen & Soldiers of the United States as well as Sailors & Mariners World wide.
Tuesday, July 25, 2006
Crew Set To Abandon Listing Ship
The crew of an Asian ship listing in the North Pacific are preparing to abandon it after the U.S. Coast Guard said it was too dangerous to stay on board..The Coast Guard and Alaska Air National Guard were sending helicopters and other rescue craft to pick up the 22 crew members of the car carrier. The Cougar Ace, which is flagged in Singapore and was carrying 4,813 cars, was taking on water, listing sharply and leaking fuel off the Alaskan coast, the U.S. Coast Guard said earlier. "For their safety, it's best for them to come off the ship," Reporters quoted Lt. Mara Booth-Miller as saying. She said it was "very probable" that part of the deck was under water. "It's sitting on its side, basically," Petty Officer Stephen Harrison told reporters.
The car carrier reported late Sunday that it was listing at an 80-degree angle 500 nautical miles (804 nautical kilometers) southwest of Dutch Harbor, Alaska, said Petty Officer Eric J. Chandler, from the Coast Guard center in Juneau. But he said it was unclear "what caused the damage or how much water it is taking on." Earlier Monday, a Coast Guard plane dropped three life rafts, but roiling waters pushed the rafts underneath the dipping port side of the ship. Rescuers tossed an additional raft along the higher starboard side, but it was a 150-foot (45.72 meters) drop to the water and beyond their reach. One crew member had a broken leg, but no other injuries have been reported.
The 654-foot (196-meter) Tokyo-based ship is owned by Matsui OSK Lines and was carrying the vehicles from Singapore to Vancouver when the problem emerged. Some of the ship's 430 metric tons of fuel oil and 112 metric tons of diesel was leaking, and a sheen extended 3 kilometers (2 miles) from the ship, Chandler said, citing information from a Coast Guard C-130 flying over the ship. A merchant marine ship crew that had been in the area reached the vessel Monday morning, AP reported. The crew of that ship tried, but failed, to rig a line to the Cougar Ace to keep it from tilting further. A Coast Guard cutter was on its way to the area and is expected to reach the car carrier on Tuesday.