Two more bodies found on burning oil tanker

Updated 2018-01-14 10:01:06 Xinhua

Rescuers have retrieved two more bodies from a burning oil tanker which collided with a bulk freighter in East China Sea a week ago, authorities said Saturday.

Four rescuers boarded the Panama-registered oil tanker SANCHI on Saturday morning and retrieved the bodies. They also brought back the vessel's voyage data recorder (VDR).

SANCHI, carrying 136,000 tonnes of light crude oil from Iran, collided with the CF Crystal, a Hong Kong-registered bulk freighter, about 160 nautical miles east of the Yangtze estuary on Jan. 6. Thirty-two crew members of the tanker, 30 Iranians and two Bangladesh, went missing. Rescuers found a body in the water near the collision site Monday.

The four rescuers landed on the tanker's deck at 8:37 a.m. Saturday. They found the bodies at 8:40 a.m. on a lifeboat on the tanker. The rescuers then entered the cabin, where they found the VDR, but no other missing people were found. Temperature in the living area of the tanker was 89 degrees Celsius, making it impossible for rescuers to enter.

Change of wind caused toxic smoke to spread towards the stern, and the rescuers returned with the bodies and the VDR.

Around 13 vessels, including coast guard ships from the Republic of Korea, Japan and a Japanese firefighting ship are at the site to search for the missing, control pollution and extinguish the fire.

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