Bitumen tanker abandoned after suffering water ingress in Arabian Sea

Photo: Indian Coast Guard

The Indian Coast Guard and a Good Samaritan vessel came to the aid of a Panama-flagged bitumen tanker after it suffered water ingress in the Arabian Sea on Thursday, January 23.

The crew of the 76-metre Reem 5 sent out a distress call at 06:00 local time on Thursday saying that there was flooding in the engine room and that their vessel was in danger of sinking about 210 nautical miles off Okha in the western Indian state of Gujarat.

On the request of the Indian Coast Guard, the crew of the cargo ship Ganga diverted to render assistance to Reem 5. All 13 of the tanker’s crew were safely brought on board the responding cargo vessel despite the adverse weather conditions in the area.

Ganga then set sail for Mumbai where it will disembark the rescued sailors upon its expected arrival on Friday, January 24.

Indian authorities have not yet discussed plans for the possible salvage of the tanker, which had gone adrift in the Arabian Sea after it was abandoned.

Reem 5 had been sailing from Basrah, Iran, to Hazira, India, when the flooding occurred.

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