Eritrean ship yet to be salvaged

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Mangalore, Jun 24 (UNI) The Eritrean vessel 'Den Den', which ran aground off Tannirbavi coast near here in the Arabian sea was still half submerged with no hope in sight of salvaging the cargo ship.

The vessel, which sailed off from the New Mangalore Port (NMP) on June 22 last year developed a technical snag near Tannirbavi beach, a few nautical miles from the port and started tilting.

Captain of the ship Abraham Kwaw, who immediately contacted the port authorities did not render any assistance stating that the crew would be able to get the vessel sailing after sometime. However, the vessel started drifting towards the shore next day following high tides and started sinking.

While three crew members lost their lives, when they attempted to reach the shore, 21 other crew, including ship captain reached the shore. They were accomodated and held captive for almost three months at a city hotel as they had lost all their documents.

The bureaucratic delay in procedures between Indian and Eritrean governments had confined them to stay in their hotel rooms.

The vessel carrying 80 tonne of furnace oil and 25 tonne of diesel created panic among the local fishermen as they feared that the oil spilled from the sinking ship would harm marine life and pollute the environment.

However, authorities unloaded the cargo from the ship and pumped out the fuel to another vessel later.

Meanwhile, tourists flock the place to see the tilted ship as the authorities were yet to salvage it.

Incidentally, two other ships had met with the same fate near the same spot earlier.

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