Friday, 12 July 2013

The MOL Comfort saga has come to an end.

According to an emailed report by the Indian Coast Guard, the burned out wreck parted her tow line and disappeared into the inky depths of the Indian Ocean at around 0100 IST.

Her last position was at 19’56″N 65’25″E, in a water depth of about 3,000 meters of the Indian Ocean late Wednesday, four days after fire broke out while the section was being towed according to Mitsui O.S.K. Lines.

The aft portion of the ship, which snapped in half on June 17 about 200 nautical miles from Yemen, and about 1,700 containers sank 10 days later. The bow was being towed to port when fire broke out on July 6.

The Indian Coast Guard, which had been called in to help fight the fire, left the scene earlier Wednesday when the ship’s progress took it outside India’s search and rescue area, according to gCaptain, a maritime news agency that has been tracking the progress of the vessel.

The Indian Coast Guard had reported that most of the MOL Comfort’s containers held hazardous and noxious substances, making it “extremely dangerous” to tow the ship toward the coast for firefighting operations.

Salvage teams were remaining on the scene to monitor the release of any oil and floating containers, MOL said.

MOL has already started an investigation with the MOL Comfort’s shipbuilder, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, to determine the cause of the accident, and has appointed Lloyd’s Register as a technical consultant.

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