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Deserted ship found drifting in Bình Thuận sea

Update: November, 17/2016 - 15:00
The Lingao characters on the stern of the ship, indicating that it was orignally from the Lingao County, Hainan Province, China. -
Viet Nam News

BÌNH THUẬN – A mysterious foreign ship was found drifting with no crew aboard in the Bình Thuận sea, leaving authorities perplexed.

Phạm Trọng Nhân, Chairman of the La Gi Commune People’s Committee, said that at 4:30pm yesterday the ship that was found adrift 160 nautical miles from the mainland was successfully towed towards the shore by local fishermen.

The iron-clad ship is 51 metres long and 10 metres wide, and 4.2 metres tall, painted blue and white-grey, and outfitted with a system of some 100 high-voltage light bulbs, according to local authorities. 

According to La Gi Commune’s Steering Committee for Floods and Storms Search and Rescue, two days earlier, Hoàng Ngọc Thu, a local resident and captain of a fishing vessel was fishing near the ship but spotted no human activities over several hours and sent crew members to the ship to investigate.

Though the lights were still on, no people were detected on board, so Captain Thu contacted La Gi Commune’s Border Guard and was subsequently instructed to get in touch with a nearby fishing vessel and jointly tow the abandoned ship back to the mainland.

There were signs that the ship underwent a considerable impact. The ship includes 12 rooms. There were also signs of the personal effects of the crew having been ransacked, however, there was no clothing left aboard.

The Border Guard is working closely with Bình Thuận Province’s Port Authority and La Gi Commune authorities as well as with the two local fishing vessels’ crew members and captains to shed some light over the mysterious ship and its circumstances. 

According to the Border Guard, the ship is named Qiong Lin Yu and there’s high chance that it’s a fishing ship registered in Lingao County (as etched in the ship’s stern), Hainan Province, China, Nhân Dân (People) newspaper reported. The ship has been out of operation for a long time; the owner had removed all nautical instruments, communication system, and moor; there was also no oil, no water in the tank.

The Border Guard also suspects that recent tropical storms No 7 & No 8 on the East Sea caused the ship to detach from its moorings and drift into Vietnamese waters. The incident likely took place between October 21 and 26.

Bình Thuận Border Guard has directed relevant agencies to commence procedures to handle drifting derelict vehicles in line with existing law.  VNS

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