Rescue Bid After Freight Ship Loses Energy

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On December 14, a cargo vessel reportedly lost power after getting caught in the stormy seas and an emergency tug was deployed.

What happened?

The cargo vessel ‘MV Fame’ reportedly lost its power off Taransay in the Western Isles when it was carrying a cargo of salmon feed.

The vessel reportedly lost its power in the stormy seas and five people onboard the vessel were stranded. They reportedly called for assistance and two lifeboats and the Stornoway Coastguard helicopter have been assisting the crew.

Tugs offer assistance:

The coastguard agency dispatched an Orkney-based emergency towing vessel ‘Levoli Black’, ‘Stornoway’ and ‘Leverburgh’ lifeboats to assist the powerless cargo vessel.

The crew members onboard the vessel were efficient in keeping the vessel from running adrift though they faced winds gusting to force 10 and sea swell of up to 8m (26ft).

The Scottish Environmental Group, Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB) and Secretary of State’s Representative for Maritime Salvage have been notified and have been monitoring the situation.

HM Coastguard commander Peter Davies said, “The five crew currently onboard and the RNLI all weather lifeboats have been battling bad weather conditions all night to keep the vessel from grounding and we have so far managed to stabilise the vessel from drifting further. The vessel is currently six nautical miles from the Isle of Harris and we just established a tow this morning so the vessel can be taken to a safe shelter away from the prevailing weather conditions”.

Threat of pollution:

Western Isles local authority, Comhairle nan Eilean Siar, said the incident had posed a potential pollution threat.

Roddie Mackay, leader of the comhairle, said, “It also highlighted the need for the Western Isles to have a dedicated coastguard emergency towing vessel (ETV). Scotland used to have two of the boats available to the coastguard to cover the north and west coasts, before the UK government reduced the service to a single ship in 2012”.

Mr Mackay further added, said “Last night we had an incident off the west coast which could have seriously impacted marine wildlife and the coastal environment. These incidents are all too frequent and we remain very concerned, as do colleagues in neighbouring councils, about the current situation which increases the risks for mariners and the environment. We will once again be making the case to the UK government for a second ETV based on the west coast to address this serious issue”.

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Source: Kaplan Herald

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