Saturday, December 23, 2006

Ship Fire Kills 4 Chinese In South Korean Waters

Four Chinese crewmen aboard a cargo ship were killed when the ship caught fire in waters off South Korea's southwestern coast, South Korea's Coast Guard said. The cargo ship, registered in Sierra Leone with the name JIDA, caught fire at 1:30 p.m. in waters 9 km off South Korea's Southwestern coast. Local media said explosion took place on the ship. Following the accident, South Korea's Coast Guard sent vessels and helicopters to the spot and rescued eight out of the total of 12 crewmen, all Chinese, while the other four people failed to escape the ship, said an official of the Chinese Embassy in South Korea.The South Korean Coast Guard said the missing four presumed dead as the fire has not been put out yet. According to the official, two of the eight rescued were seriously injured and had already been sent to a hospital in Seoul. The other six crewmen are in stable condition in Mokpo city. The Chinese embassy has sent officials to visit the rescued and expressed gratitude to the South Korean government for their cooperation in the rescue, the Chinese embassy said. The identities of the crewmen are still being investigated.

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