Vessel carrying over 14,000 sheep capsizes off Romania

Photo: Inspectorate for Emergency Situations, Constanța

A live export vessel with a cargo of 14,600 sheep capsized off the coast of Romania on Sunday, November 24.

The Palau-flagged Queen Hind had just left the Port of Midia in Constanța and was en route to Jeddah in Saudi Arabia when it began listing heavily to starboard at around 11:45 local time on Sunday.

The vessel ultimately capsized a few hundred metres from shore near Constanța.

Romania’s ARSVOM national maritime search and rescue (SAR) agency then deployed two vessels to the scene. The ARSVOM personnel and the crew of a civilian tug that had also sailed to the area to render assistance were able to rescue all 22 of Queen Hind‘s crew, who have been identified as Syrian nationals.

One crewmember was later rushed to hospital to be treated for hypothermia after having spent several minutes in the water following the capsizing.

Two Romanian Coast Guard ships and vessels from other local agencies had also arrived at the scene to recover as many of Queen Hind‘s cargo of sheep as possible.

Operations to rescue the livestock continued through to the early evening of Sunday but were postponed by the authorities until the following morning due to worsening visibility.

A total of 32 sheep were eventually rescued while the remainder are believed to have drowned.

Romanian officials said that, as soon as salvage operations on Queen Hind are completed, an investigation will be launched to determine the cause of the capsizing.

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