Muscat: A floundering North Korean cargo ship was rescued on Tuesday eight nautical miles off Duqm Port in southern Oman.
Around noontime on Tuesday, Kem Dou Wuo, the captain of the stricken MV Daesan, sent a distress signal, which was picked up by the dock master at the Oman Dry-dock Company and the harbour master of the Port of Duqm.
The SOS was relayed via the Maritime Rescue Co-ordination Centre of Oman to all the relevant agencies and authorities in the area. The vessel was then escorted to anchorage at the Port of Duqm where the MV Daesan has since dropped anchor.
“The ship is out of danger and a decision to carry out repairs will be taken soon in coordination of the agents, owners and dock authorities,” Ebey Alex, General Manager, Khimji’s Sparkle Marine Services (KSMS), told Gulf News over telephone from Duqum today.
He said that KSMS, which owns and operates the tugboat service at the Port of Duqm, had provided submersible pumps to the stricken ship so that water could be pumped out. “They are still pumping out water,” he said, adding that the ship was safely at anchorage pending inspections and repairs of a breached hull that sparked the emergency. “We still don’t know how much hull is damaged and it would take time to ascertain that.”
A helicopter from the Royal Air Force of Oman hovered over the ship as tugboats rushed to the ship’s side to render help.
The 33 crew of the cargo ship declined to get off and all are still on-board and safe. The vessel is carrying vehicles as well as other cargo and a large amount of oil.