Another vessel rescued by port authorities

06 September 2009

`M V Thor Guardian', a Panama flag vessel, which was drifting at the outer anchorage of New Mangalore Port in rough weather was brought inside and berthed here on Saturday. The vessel, which was detained as per the order of Bombay high court owing to a dispute between the owners and agency which had chartered it, was anchored at the outer anchorage of the port for the past three months, officials in NMPT said.

The vessel, without any laden cargo, and with seven crew members -- all Indians on board -- was seen from the signal station of NMPT drifting at her place of anchorage. S Gopalakrishna, traffic manager of NMPT told STOI that the crew did not send out any SOS due to the inclement weather, but since she was facing a tough time at the anchorage due to the weather, the crew made a request to provide her sanctuary inside the port.

The port officials were initially reluctant to bring her in, as the vessel did not have any authorized agents to take care of the procedural requirements needed before any vessel can be berthed inside the port. "Even the papers of the vessel were attached due to the ongoing court case," he said. The port authorities in the meanwhile sent out requests to the local agents to represent the vessel's interest in view of her precarious condition.

Once Sea Star Shipping Agency, a local agency, came forward to represent the vessel, the port sent out its pilot tug to guide the vessel inside. Gopalakrishna said, "The vessel is in sea worthy condition and has been presently berthed along 14 East." Gopalakrishna added that the port authorities initiated the move offering the floundering vessel help, and the same was completed once the necessary formalities were completed.

On the cargo that the vessel was carrying, Gopalakrishna said, "It is empty and has been floating out at sea." The timely action taken by NMPT authorities thus prevented a possible disaster and saved yet another vessel from going down off the Mangalore coast.

Two of the three vessels - M V Den Den' and `Asian Forest - faced problems in recent past and sank off the coast.

source times of india


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