Photo taken aboard the MV Akademik Shokalski off Antarctica. Image courtesy AMSA

Photo taken aboard the MV Akademik Shokalski off Antarctica. Image courtesy AMSA

The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) is coordinating a search and rescue for a Russian passenger ship stuck in ice with 74 people on board approximately 1500 nautical miles south of Hobart, Tasmania.

AMSA’s Rescue Coordination Centre Australia (RCC Australia) says it remains in regular contact with the vessel, MV Akademik Shokalski, which is experiencing very strong winds and limited visibility. Winds are forecast to diminish on Friday (AEDT), AMSA says.

Three ships with icebreaking capability are enroute to the vessel, including the Australian Antarctic Division (AAD) vessel Aurora Australis. The first of the responding vessels is not expected to arrive until Friday night.

The Falmouth Martime Rescue Coordination Centre in the UK received a distress message via satellite from a Russian-flagged MV Akademik Shokalskiy, with 74 people on board, at about 7.20am (AEDT) Christmas morning. The Falmouth MRCC then contacted Rescue Coordination Centre Australia.

The ship is in the Australian Search and Rescue region, 100 nautical miles east of the French base Dumont D’Urville and is stable.

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  • waynep71222

    i have always wondered for ice hull rated ships. if one could use something like a concrete pumping truck arm mounted on the foredeck..  or stored embedded in the bow railing that either had direct hot water from the engine room.. or compressed air from a rather large rotary screw compressor..  a set of either wheels or ski’s to ride make it easier to maintain a correct distance from the ice..  

    big swinging S shapes across the ice would cut thru or even partially thru the sheet and make it easier to break.. but it could also cut the ice into tapered blocks if the nozzle was spraying at an angle.. so they could be forced down and out as the ship moves forward.. or out..  this minimal addition in the overall cost of the ship might make self rescue in ice easier..

    keeping the ice broke up at the bow.. could make it easier to move forward..  reestablish forward momentum after being trapped in the ice by the wind..

    if might take both high pressure heated water and compressed air to properly knife thru the ice.. 

    i have been wondering if some of the industrial laser beams that are used to cut steel plate.. might also be used….  hmm.. ice berg tic tac toe anybody.. slice them up and slide the blocks into the hold for drinking water companies..

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