The Japanese Coast Guard resumed aerial search operations for missing crewmembers of the Gulf Livestock 1 today after a typhoon-hit weekend made search and rescue operations impossible.
Forty crew are still missing from the ship, a converted boxship, which lost power, took on water, capsized and sank with more than 5,800 cattle onboard. Two crew have been found alive so far, and another was found unconscious and pronounced dead on arrival at a Japanese hospital.
Photos have emerged showing water pouring into the Gulf Navigation ship shortly before it sank (see above).
The captain of Gulf Livestock 1, Dante Addug, 34, texted his partner saying he was praying during the moments leading up to the ship capsizing, after it sailed into a powerful typhoon.
“The typhoon is so strong up to now. Here I am praying for the typhoon to stop,” Addug texted.
Data provider Windward has provided a track of the last miles of the Panama-flagged ship’s voyage in the East China Sea (see below) as it headed into the centre of the typhoon with waves likely in excess of 15 m in height.
UAE-based Gulf Navigation, which has just shuffled top management in the days following the accident, has another two livestock carriers in its fleet – one built in 1973 and converted 10 years later, and another built 35 years ago and converted in 2014. The Gulf Livestock 1 started its trading career as a 630 teu containership in 2002 before being converted to carry animals 10 years later.