Friday, February 3, 2023
HomeWorldA cargo ship with 22 crew members sinks off Japan

A cargo ship with 22 crew members sinks off Japan

The Hong Kong-flagged cargo ship Jin Tian has sunk in waters between South Korea and Japan and rescue efforts are underway.

The ship, with 22 crew members, sank early Wednesday 110 kilometers west of the remote Danjo Islands, part of Nagasaki Prefecture, a Japan Coast Guard spokesman said, confirming an earlier report by Kyodo News. The Coast Guard received a distress call at 11:15 p.m. Tuesday, he said, adding the cause of the sinking was still unknown.

A South Korean Coast Guard ship is conducting a search operation in waters between South Korea and Japan on Wednesday.Credit:KCG/AP

Jin Tian’s crew consisted of 14 Chinese nationals and eight from Myanmar, the Coast Guard said. They boarded emergency rafts at 2:40 a.m. and the ship sank six minutes later, they added.

The Coast Guard of South Korea’s Jeju Island said five crew members were rescued by nearby vessels after the 6,551-ton Jin Tian sank while transporting timber about 150km south of the island.

A Japan Coast Guard ship.

A Japan Coast Guard ship.Credit:JCG/AP

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It said the ship’s captain last communicated with the Coast Guard via a satellite phone at around 2:41 a.m., informing officials that the crew members were abandoning the ship.

No one was found in the three life rafts and two lifeboats searched by South Korean Coast Guard crews who later arrived by speedboat.

High wind warnings were issued at the site of the sinking, where Japan Coast Guard ships and planes were searching for survivors with nearby merchant ships.


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