Sunken Sanchi Tanker Among Ships Hit by Iran Sanctions

sanchi tanker fire
Rescue ships work to extinguish the fire on the Panama-registered Sanchi tanker carrying Iranian oil, which went ablaze after a collision with a Chinese freight ship in the East China Sea, in this January 10, 2018. China Daily via REUTERS 

By Nick Wadhams and Javier Blas (Bloomberg) — Among the hundreds of Iranian-linked banks, companies and vessels that the U.S. slapped sanctions against on Monday was an Iranian crude oil tanker called the Sanchi. There’s one problem: The ship sank after a collision and fiery explosion in January.

The U.S. Treasury Department’s sanctions list distributed Monday leaves no doubt about the identity of the vessel targeted with sanctions. It’s the Sanchi, otherwise known as the Gardenia, the Seahorse and the Sepid, that’s flown under flags including those of Tanzania, Malta and Tuvalu. Its International Maritime Organization number is 9356608, and it’s linked to the National Iranian Tanker Company.

Tanker tracking data compiled by Bloomberg shows that’s the same ship that sank in the East China Sea — with all 32 people aboard — after colliding with another vessel on Jan. 6. The tanker was laden with more than 1 million barrels of light crude oil and burned for several days, creating a large oil spill, before an explosion destroyed what was left of it and sent the vessel to the bottom of the sea.

© 2018 Bloomberg L.P