The huge fire onboard the NITC tanker Sanchi continued today after the vessel collided with Chinese bulker CF Crystal in the East China Sea off Shanghai on Saturday night. Rescue vessels are still struggling to contain the inferno, although the ship’s Iranian owner has claimed the fire is weakening.
According to China’s Ministry of Transport, the poor weather conditions including strong winds and high waves at the incident site are hampering firefighting operations.
During the search operations for the missing crews, the rescuers have found a body believed to be one of the sailors from the tanker. The body has been sent to Shanghai for identification. Meanwhile, the other 31 crew remain missing.
The rescue team, joined by rescuers from South Korea and the US, has widened their search for the missing seafarers, covering an area of 900 square miles.
An official from Shanghai Maritime Administration also told Splash that the rescue vessels could not get too close as the tanker is still at risk of exploding and the heavy toxic smoke near the tanker is also keeping rescue teams at bay.
A formal investigation on the incident, involving several government departments, started today.
Currently the biohazard team is closely monitoring the situation at the site in efforts to prevent an environmental disaster.