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The 179.9 meter pure car and truck carrier Hoegh Osaka has run aground on Friday night off Southampton and is currently listing 50 degrees according to the UK’s Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) and the RNLI.
According to a press conference on 4 January, the Master/Pilot of the vessel deliberately ran the ship aground by as a result of the vessel listing following her departure from Southampton. Had the ship not grounded in this location, the fear was the ship might capsize in the middle of the channel according to a statement today by Ingar Skiaker, CEO of Höegh Autoliners.
“At this stage it’s too early to speculate on the cause of this accident. The vessel did develop a severe list shortly after she left port and the pilot and the master made the decision to save the vessel and the crew by grounding her on the bank. This showed great skill and seamanship and they had to make quick decision and they did that in a very good fashion,” said Skiaker.
Salvors from Svitzer have been contracted to support the salvage of the vessel.
The ship is grounded on Bramble Bank, aka the Brambles, a sandbar in the center of the channel which was also visited up close and personal by the cruise liner QE2 in 2008 before its final voyage.
In an emailed statement from Höegh Autoliners, the owner of the vessel, one crew member has been injured as a result of the incident and has been airlifted to Queen Alexander Hospital in Portsmouth with non-life threatening injuries.
“The remaining crew have been taken to HMS Daedalus at Stubbington by helicopter and will be accommodated locally overnight. However, a small number of senior officers remain on board. The crew have confirmed that the vessel is not taking in any water and they are presently in a stable position with current list,” according to Höegh.
The company says damage and stability issues are currently being assessed on board its vessel.
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