At 4:30pm yesterday (Feb16) at Rassada Pier, Lt Col Prasert Srikhunnarat together with officers from the Phuket Marine Police questioned 35-year-old Mr Thanee Martchay from Phang Nga – the Captain of the Chocksutthida 2 cargo ship – and Mr Tone, a Burmese crew member who were on board the vessel when it sank off Koh Kheaw earlier in the day.
Lt Col Prasert said, “Early yesterday afternoon we received information that a cargo sink had sunk at Koh Kheaw. The boat was heading to a hotel on Phi Phi Island and sunk at around 3pm.
“The ship was carrying fresh and dried food and 28 tanks of diesel totalling 5,000 litres.
“Luckily the Pichamon 2009 tour boat was nearby and went to assist when they saw the boat in trouble. All of the containers with diesel inside were removed from the water and onto the rescuing boat before Mr Thanee and Mr Tone were brought back to shore,” he said.
Mr Thanee said, “I took off from Jearawanit Pier in Rassada and was heading to Phi Phi Island. A big wave about two to three metres high hit the front of the boat, which already has a crack, and the crack became bigger and started to let in water.
“I could not control the ship so I decided to call my boss to inform what had happened, I also contacted a friend who was nearby to see if they could come and help us.” he said.
“My crew and I were wearing lifeguard jackets and after the ship sank we were in the sea. A passing boat, Pichamon 2009, came and rescued us and also helped pull the diesel containers from the sea,” he added.