Chemical Tanker Adrift Off Ireland – Update

Hellespont File Photo
Hellespont File Photo

Update January 14, 2014 – The Defence Forces of Ireland reports that the LÉ Aisling reached the disabled MV Hellespont Charger early Tuesday and the chemical tanker is currently under tow by the tug Thrax to the Shannon estuary. The vessels are expected to arrive in port at between 5-6 pm later today.

The weather conditions are described as rough to moderate with poor visibility. Due to the size of the vessel the maximum speed of travel is estimated to be three knots.

January 13, 2014 – The Irish Coast Guard is responding today to a chemical tanker adrift since Sunday off the west coast of Ireland.

The Irish Coast Guard says it received a call from the MT Hellespont Charger Sunday reporting that ship had suffered main engine failure approximately 120 miles west of Loop Head, Ireland while underway from Corpus Christi, Texas to Aughinish with 15,000 tons of caustic soda.

The Coast Guard reports that a tug has been arranged to rendezvous with the vessel and the Irish Naval Vessel LE Aisling is also enroute to monitor the towing operation which is expected to commence late Monday.

Weather conditions are reported to be Force 7 winds and waves of 5 to 6 meters.

Unconfirmed reports say that a tug is on-scene currently but is having trouble connecting to the vessel.

Spare parts are being transported to Shannon where they are expected to be transferred to the vessel. The spare parts however, are not expected to arrive until Tuesday.

The 16,802 dwt MT Hellespont Charger is managed by Hellespont Ship Management in Germany and has a crew of 22 Filipinos.

The Coast Guard reports that there is no immediate danger to the vessel or crew at this time.