Two dead, eight others missing after cargo ship sinks in East China Sea

Photo: Korea Coast Guard
Photo: Korea Coast Guard

Two sailors are confirmed dead while eight of their companions have gone missing after their cargo vessel sank in bad weather in the East China Sea on Wednesday, January 25.

The Hong Kong-flagged, 9,800DWT Jin Tian had earlier departed Port Klang, Malaysia, and was en route to Incheon, South Korea, when the captain sent a radio message to the Japan and Korea Coast Guards saying that the ship's cargo of lumber had shifted during transit.

The shifting of the cargo then caused the vessel to list heavily, and the crew were forced to abandon ship at around 02:40 local time on Wednesday. Japanese officials said the vessel then sank around five minutes later approximately 160 kilometres southwest of Nagasaki.

The crews of responding coast guard vessels and some Good Samaritan ships pulled 11 survivors out of the water. This number included six unconscious sailors who were later brought to hospital.

A helicopter sent by the Japan Air Self-Defence Force recovered two other unconscious crewmembers from the same area. Tragically, the two individuals were later pronounced deceased.

Operations are ongoing in an attempt to locate the ship's eight remaining sailors.

Jin Tian's crew at the time of the incident included both Chinese and Burmese nationals.

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Baird Maritime / Work Boat World