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Crew rescued as cargo boat sinks in storm

PHUKET: A captain and seven crewmen on a cargo boat were rescued near Koh Khai yesterday (July 4) after their boat sank in heavy seas while heading for Phi Phi Island.

By Eakkapop Thongtub

Tuesday 5 July 2022, 12:02PM

Sophiya Wattanasong notified Marine Police at 2:30pm that her vessel Andaman Smooth 999 was in distress and taking on water.

The boat had departed Unity Pier in Krabi and was heading to Phi Phi Island. Ms Sophiya had lost contact with the boat at 2pm.

Marine Police dispatched a rescue boat, and other commercial boats in the area joined the search for the sinking vessel.

The boat was found taking on water near the Koh Khai islands at 3:50pm. Cargo was scattered beside the ship amid strong waves, with the seven captain and crew still on board.

The seven were brought safely onto Marine Police boat TR 331 before the Andaman Smooth sank, with cargo still on board.

Suree Rattanasong, manager of Unity Co Ltd, which operated the Andaman Smooth 999, said the boat departed Unity Pier in Krabi at 12:30pm.

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At that time the weather was calm and safe for the boat to leave port, he said.

After about 20 minutes, the operator lost contact with the boat and contacted the authorities. Other boats in the area were called to render assistance, he added.

After the rescue it was learned that the Andaman Smooth had encountered large waves, causing structural damage to its bow and leading to the boat taking on water, Mr Suree said.

The crew were unable to make repairs to prevent the large volume of water pouring into the boat, which eventually sank.

Mr Suree said it was too early to give a defined value for the cargo and boat lost to the sea, but were together easily worth several million baht. “This process is in review,” he said.

The boat sinking today comes on the anniversary of the sinking of the Phoenix tour boat on July 5, 2018. The Phoenix capsized and sank in storm conditions southeast of Phuket, killing 47 Chinese tourists.

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Kamala Pete | 06 July 2022 - 12:32:48

I wonder if the alleged millions of baht worth of cargo was insured?

maverick | 06 July 2022 - 08:14:36

Kurt@ agree most likely scenario was unsecured cargo shifting and making vessel unstable in strong seas - which was exactly cause of Phoenix disaster where ballast shifted causing capsize…….third world problem 

Kurt | 06 July 2022 - 05:10:45

Photos show a even keel vessel in calm water with a normal draft. ( see the hull paint lining). That is not a sinking vessel. Instead of abandon it, a waterpump + generator should have put on board,  to keep her floating and tugging it to shallow water to beach it for repairs.. A very strange happening.

Kurt | 05 July 2022 - 13:09:12

Two different time stories in 1 article.
1: Boat left 12:30pm, at 12:50pm operator lost contact. and contacted authorities.
2: Boat left 12:30pm,  at 14:00 Ms Sophiya lost contact, and notified authorities at 14:30.
Photos are not supporting the story of ships disaster.
Much space for 'misunderstanding' about the whole happening.

Kurt | 05 July 2022 - 12:59:41

Cargo vessel sinks in storm?  Photo's show otherwise. The 'rescued' crew did even swim themselve ( with a line) to the rescue boat. At 12:30 pm the weather was calm and safe, and less than 2 hours later the vessel had such structural damage caused by waves (?) that nothing could be done on board? Probably the cargo was not stowed secured in the hold and shifted, causing hull damage.


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