Crew taken off stricken ship
Jun 8, 2005
Shortly after sunset last night (Tuesday, 7 June 2005) 24 members of the crew and the ship’s master were taken off the grounded bulker Kiperousa by the East London harbour tug Mpunzi and were later transferred to the navy hydrographic survey vessel SAS Protea before being taken to East London.
This was after the situation on board the fully laden ship apparently deteriorated – prior to this the crew showed little intention of leaving their vessel. The vessel’s engine room is reported to be flooded and the vessel is noticeably down by the stern and listing.
It now appears the Kiperousa, which is fully loaded with logs from West Africa and which was heading for Durban, hit a reef or rock while on a heading northeastwards along the Cape coast. The ship began taking water and an appeal for assistance was radioed, with rescue craft, helicopters and later a harbour tug from East London responding. One of the Smit tugs based in Durban is also understood to have sailed for the scene.
Immediate efforts today are centering around trying to get a line aboard the bulker to two her into deeper water where there is less danger of wave action causing the ship to break up.
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