Tugs have rescued two merchant ships and a ferry full of passengers in the Atlantic over the final weekend of May.
Of these three towage operations, the most important in terms of people rescued was assistance to a ferry stranded off the coast of Martha’s Vineyard, in northeast US.
With 75 passengers on board, Rhode Island Fast Ferry’s Ava Pearl lost power in 20-knot winds, about 1 km from shore on 27 May. Tug Sirius was deployed and towed this stranded ferry to Vineyard Haven where the passengers disembarked. The cause of the outage is under investigation.
Off Brazil, a tug was contracted to assist stranded very large ore carrier Stellar Samba. A fire on board the bulk carrier was extinguished by the crew, but the ship was disabled. Brazilian maritime authorities sent a naval ship to monitor the Stellar Samba’s condition.
Authorities contracted a tug to tow the ore carrier to safety. Stellar Samba was en route from Singapore to Itaqui, Brazil on a ballast voyage when a generator fire was caused by an oil leak on 26 May.
Another cargo ship in the Atlantic needed assistance from a tug on 26 May. Spaarnegracht suffered engine failure while sailing north of the Azores. It was on a voyage from Husum, Sweden to Baltimore, US. 2015-built tug Dian Kingdom was deployed to tow Spaarnegracht to safety.
Also on 26 May, a fire broke out on offshore drilling rig Majestic offshore Nigeria. According to local reports, 100 workers were evacuated from the Depthwize Nigeria-operated rig, working on a ConOil oil field in waters of Koluama, off Bayelsa State. The fire was brought under control by fire-fighters, but is severely damaged.