KUALA LUMPUR – At least one crew member was reported dead while 20 others were rescued on Friday, after a Malaysian cargo vessel experienced severe listing at sea while enroute from Loreto Dinagat, the Philippines to Lianyungang, China.
According to a statement from Malaysian Bulk Carriers Berhad (MBC) one of its vessels ‘MV Alam Manis’, with 21 Filipino crew, was carrying 53,795 metric tonnes of bulk nickel ore when it departed on July 12. The vessel began listing by 14 degrees starboard on Wednesday.
Because of the rough weather conditions and adverse swell due to the weight, the cargo in hold No. 1 and 2 shifted, which made the vessel to experience listing before a rescue vessel was dispatched on Friday to rescue and escort the vessel to the nearest port of San Fernando in north Luzon.
“The vessel had informed of the problem which has developed approximately 255 nautical miles south east of Taiwan.
“MBC immediately convened a Crisis Command Centre (CCC) and the vessel was instructed to proceed to the nearest port.
“However on Friday, at about 2.55 pm the listing worsened to 20 degrees starboard and at 6.05 pm a decision was made to evacuate the ship in the interest of the crew’s safety with the assistance of a salvage tug,” said the statement, made available to Bernama, Saturday.
A MBC perssonel was immediately despatched to San Fernando while arrangements were being made to stablise the vessel and discharge cargo before towing the vessel to a repair yard.
“We are deeply saddened that one of our colleagues onboard the Alam Manis has lost his life during an emergency situation on the ship.
The statement did not mention how the crew died nor the name of the victim.
“We are relieved that all others on board are now safe,” said MBC chief executive officer Kuok Khoon Kuan in the same statement.
In addition, MBC would undertake an internal investigation and cooperate fully with the relevant authorities investigating the tragic incident, he said.