At least 26 people from the sunken accommodations barge Papaa-305 (IMO 8784327) off Gujarat, western India, are dead, and 49 are still missing, the Indian Navy said on Wednesday May 19th. 186 survivors have been pulled from the water.
Questions are beginning to be asked how the various accommodation barge accidents occurred, given that the storm’s formation was forecast more than a week in advance, and the Indian Coast Guard had been in contact with fishermen and with the oil industry about making preparations for it.
The local administration was quick to point out that it had learned lessons from a cyclone a few years ago and that for Cyclone Tauktae 6,000-plus boats from the region’s artisanal fishing industry had been called back to port. Most of these escaped damage and the advice probably saved hundreds of lives.
However, the oil and gas operators had fully-manned assets at sea, and were hit badly. In addition to the 600-plus personnel adrift on three barges in extreme weather, drillship Sagar Bhushan (IMO 8407266) and crude oil tanker Desh Bhakt (IMO 9232905) lost their moorings. As of May 20th the Sagar Bhushan was at Mumbai Anchorage. Desh Bhakt was at anchor in West Coast India area.
India’s Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas announced Wednesday that it has created a three-member panel to examine the sequence of events leading up to the unprecedented multi-vessel incident, along with the quality of the emergency response.
SAR response efforts continued on Wednesday. Coast Guard cutter Samrat assisted partially-flooded offshore tug Sangita (IMO 9080900), off the coast of Daman. Towing arrangements were being made. Two drifting freighters, the Denali (IMO 9438016) and Samarpan (IMO 9109835), were now considered safe, with one anchored and one drifting in a non-hazardous area.
As of May 20th Sangita was at anchor off Mumbai. Samarpan was listed as “not under command” off Veraval, Gujarat.
2004-built, St Kitts & Nevis-flagged, 8,882 gt Papaa 305 is owned and managed by Modern Imagination Ltd of Tortola, British Virgin Islands. It is entered with Shipowners” Club on behalf of Papaa Shipping Private Ltd.
1994-built, India-flagged, 398 gt Sangita is owned and managed by Vedant Ship management of Mumbai, India.
1987-built, India-flagged, 11,103 gt Sagar Bhushan is owned and managed by ONGC of Mumbai, India.
2003-built, India-flagged, 61,978 gt Desh Bakht is owned and managed by SCI of Mumbai, India. It is entered with North of England on behalf of Shipping Corporation of India Ltd.
2009-built, Marshall Islands-flagged, 30,669 gt Denali is owned and managed by Denali Shipping LP of Majuro, Marshall islands. ISM manager is Technomar Shipping Inc-Lib of Athens, Greece. It is entered with London Club on behalf of Denali Shipping LP.
1995-built, India-flagged, 1,874 gt Samarpan is owned and managed by Global Maritime Services of Mumbai, India.
Correction: In yesterday’s IMN we quoted a local news source which stated two incorrect points about tug Alliance (IMO 9632973). We have been contacted by Ashwin Samant, a director of Underwater Services Ltd, to inform us that:
(a) Underwater Services does not own the vessel Alliance. Underwater time chartered the vessel from VS Marine Services. (At the bottom of the article IMN cites the Equasis information on Alliance, which states that it is owned and managed by Alliance Offshore of Gujarat, India. The error occurred in the body of the article.)
(b) Mr Samant informs us that VS Marine have appointed a local agency in Mangalore (which is not Yojaka) to carry out the wreck removal.