Sixteen crew members were rescued by the Coast Guard after their merchant vessel ran aground near Raigad coast, on the West Coast of India, on Monday morning.
According to the Coast Guard officials,at about 1120 hrs on 14 Jul 14, Coast Guard Maritime Rescue co-ordination Centre Mumbai received a distress call from M V Priyanka, relayed through port officer Revdanda, Dist. Raigad. It was informed that a 70 meters long Indian vessel was tilting precariously at approximately 3 km from the fairway buoy of the harbour.
The vessel was manned by a 16-member Indian crew and was carrying 1900 mt of iron pellets. The vessel was on passage from Mumbai and had arrived Revdanda yesterday. On 14 July 2014, the vessel broke anchor and started drifting due to inclement weather. After some time the vessel tilted dangerously to port.
Sensing the emergency of the situation Coast Guard Chetak helicopter from Mumbai was launched at 1200 hrs for rescue of the stranded crew. The coast guard helicopter arrived on scene by 1215 hrs and started winching the crew from the distressed vessel to safe location onshore. The air crew rescue diver and the pilots of the helicopter braved the inclement weather, incessant rains and high speed wind to rescue 11 of the 16 crew.
Later on investigation, it was confirmed that 05 crew had used the Liferaft of the vessel and abandoned the ship when the vessel tilted dangerously to one side. All the crew were safely handed over to the local administration by 1245 hrs on 14 July 14.
The abandoned vessel is being monitored and all relevant agencies have been alerted for necessary action.