DPRK commercial ship sinks off waters of Qingdao

UPDATE 1 (2011-11-4): 3 DPRK sailors dead, 8 still missing after ship sinks off east China coast (Xinhua):

The body of a missing DPRK (Democratic People’s Republic of Korea) sailor was found Friday, bringing the death toll from the Oct. 28 sinking of a cargo ship off the coast of China to three, with rescuers continuing to search for eight missing sailors, according to Chinese maritime officials.

The Panama-flagged Oriental Sunrise sank with 19 crew members aboard following a collision with the Panama-flagged cargo ship Hamburg Bridge at 7:35 p.m. off the coast of east China’s city of Qingdao in Shandong Province.

The first sailor to perish in the incident died after being rescued, as he was heavily injured. The body of another sailor was retrieved on Oct. 31. Eight of the other sailors have been rescued and rescue workers are still searching for the remaining missing, according to officials from the Qingdao Maritime Safety Administration.

Salvage operations for the sunken ship are also under way, the officials said.

All of the crew members are from the DPRK, according to the Qingdao Frontier Inspection Station.

ORIGINAL POST (2011-11-1): According to the Daily NK:

The body of a North Korean crew member who went missing following the collision of two cargo ships in the waters off Qingdao, China last Friday was found yesterday morning, according to China’s Xinhua News Agency.

The two freighters, both flying Panamanian flags, collided on the 28th at around 7:35 in the evening, resulting in the sinking of the 2750-ton ‘Oriental Sunrise’. The next morning, the sunken ship’s mast was visible above the waterline.

Nine of the nineteen North Korean crew members on board the ship were rescued at the time, while ten were registered missing. One of the rescued nine later passed away, two are still in hospital and the remaining six are being put up at a local hotel.

Search-and-rescue units dispatched from Qingdao have not been able to locate the other missing crew members, and the situation now looks bleak.

Meanwhile, the other vessel, the 336m ‘Hamburg Bridge’, is now under investigation at anchor in waters near where the accident took place. There is also an oil slick of 200-300m in length and 10m in breadth at the scene of the collision.

The exact cause of the incident has yet to be established.

According to Xinhua:

Nine sailors are still missing while two have been confirmed dead after their cargo ship sank Friday, said local maritime officials Tuesday.

The Panama-flagged Oriental Sunrise sank following a collision with another Panama-flagged cargo ship Hamburg Bridge at 7:35 p.m. in the sea area near Qingdao, Shandong Province.

The death toll rose to two as a sailor’s body was found on Monday, said officials with Qingdao Maritime Safety Administration.

Nine of the total 19 crew members aboard had been rescued, but one of the three injured died after treatment failed. The rescuers will continue to search for the missing for three more days, they said.

All the 19 crew members were nationals of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, according to Qingdao Frontier Inspection Station.

See previous posts related to the DPRK’s shipping industry and infrastructure here.

Read the full stories here:
2 Dead, 9 Missing in Collision at Sea
Daily NK
Tang Hwa-Kwee

DPRK sailors still missing, two dead, after ship sinks off E China coast


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