2 vessels collide on the high seas; NIMASA rescues 3 crew members

2 vessels collide on the high seas; NIMASA rescues 3 crew members

Friday, October 23, 2015 6:02 pm

MT Elixir before the accident

MT Elixir before the accident

The Search and Rescue personnel of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) have rescued three crew members near Warri in Delta, as two vessels- MT Elixir and MT Tank- collided midstream.

This is contained in a statement made available to newsmen on Friday in Lagos by the Head of Public Relations of NIMASA, Hajia Lami Tumaka.

It said that one body was recovered from the incident which occurred about 65 miles from shore, just 10 Nautical miles South West of the Bonga Floating Production Storage and Offloading (FPSO) near Warri.

“Divers and other rescue personnel are still at the site of the incident where eight crew members of MT Tank appear to have been trapped.

“Preliminary reports show that the incident occurred at about 12 midnight on Monday, Oct. 19, 2015 and that MT Tank got broken in the process and taken in by water,’’ NIMASA said in the statement.

It said the Acting Director-General of NIMASA, Mr Haruna Jauro, had directed comprehensive rescue operation and ordered a thorough investigation into the incident to ascertain the remote and immediate causes.

According to the statement, Jauro expressed sadness over the loss of life occasioned by the incident and urged the crew members to exercise more caution in navigation especially around terminals.

The statement explained that the three rescued crew members were receiving treatment at Twins Clinic, Warri, while the body of the deceased had been deposited in the mortuary.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) quotes the statement as saying that “ rescue operation are still ongoing for the remaining eight crew members’’.

But in the meantime,  Twinstomp Energy Limited, owners of MT TANK has appealed to the Navy, Marine Police, Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) as well as other relevant authorities to investigate the death of nine of its 12 crew members in a shipping accident.

The firm said its vessel, MT Tank (IMO no 8681460), collided with another vessel MT Elixir (IMO no 9282510) along Bonga terminal offshore Warri, Delta State on October 19.

The incident, it said, led to the death of nine Nigerian crew members identified as Kulo Eddy Osang, Arerebo Arepade Clifford, Finecountry Timipouadeh, Akindele Akinbanjon and Odafe E. Offeh.

Others were Magaji Joshua, Isaac Kojo Money and Salami Malcolm. Others are Ejila Philip, Moses Apobowei and Sambo M.

Only three of the crew members were rescued alive.

In a petition by Olumide Oyewole of Andrias & Co Legal Practitioners, the solicitors of Twinstomp Energy Limited, the firm demanded comprehensive probe into the accident with a view to unraveling causes of the mishap.

The firm said: “Apart from the loss of the ship, MT Tank, we understand that only one body has so far been recovered of the nine dead crew members.

“We seek your assistance by using your good office to cause a thorough investigation to be conducted on the matter.”

Oyewole gave the accident site as 04 degrees 27 degrees North and 004 degrees and 27 degree East.

The Director of Naval Information, Commodore Kabiru Aliyu, confirmed the collision.

He said two combat vessels have been deployed to the scene of the collision from the Central Naval Command, Bayelsa.


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