In this section of the site I will include any interesting events that have occurred to ships in my collection.  These could range from simple renamings up to and including sinkings.  This section will not be updated to any fixed timetable, I will simply add news items as and when I find them.

Click on the small images to see the full size version.

Casualties Archive

Sunday 20th December 2015

Bright Ray (LH163) Towed to Eyemouth

At 0300hrs on 17th December 2015, the Eyemouth all-weather life boat was launched after a report had been received from the trawler Crystal Stream that it was towing another vessel and required assistance. The boat under tow was the fishing vessel Bright Ray (LH163). The lifeboat closed with the two fishing vessels which were some four miles north of Eyemouth and took up position as stern tow in order to act as a brake for the Bright Ray. Working in conjunction with Crystal Stream, the lifeboat assisted in lining up Bright Ray for a safe entry into Eyemouth harbour. All three vessels were secure alongside by 0430hrs after which the lifeboat was stood down, refuelled and made ready for service again. The photograph shows Bright Ray alongside the quay in Seahouses on 17th August 2011.


Passenger Overboard from Saga Sapphire

During the morning of 13th September 2015, a passenger went overboard from the Saga Cruises ship, Saga Sapphire. The ship was in mid-Atlantic when the incident occurred and the passenger, a 70 year old British national, was reported missing by her traveling companion. Following a thorough search of the ship she could not be found and, working in conjunction with the maritime authorities, Saga Sapphire turned around and began to conduct a search; however, the search was unsuccessful and was called off at 1430hrs GMT. The ship was on a 35 day cruise from Southampton to the Caribbean and had sailed from Funchal in Madeira on 11th December with Bridgetown, Barbados as the next port of call scheduled for 18th December. The photograph shows Saga Sapphire, then operating as Bleu de France, berthed in Palma de Mallorca on 28th April 2009.


Thames Highway Strikes the Quay in Bremerhaven

During the afternoon of 8th December 2015 the Bahamian registered vehicle carrier, Thames Highway, struck the quay in Bremerhaven while being towed from the Kaiser Port III to the Car Quay. The ship had arrived from Uusikaupunki in Finland at 0500hrs and was being towed out of the port stern first when it struck the quay during a turn after engine problems occurred that prevented the ship from being stopped in time in spite of tug assistance. The hull sustained a two meter breach about 2 meters above the water line. The ship subsequently docked at the MWB Shipyard in Bremerhaven on 9th December for repairs. The quay was severely damaged over an area of about 10 square meters. The photograph shows Thames Highway inward for Zeebrugge on 23rd June 2008.


Passenger Suffers Heart Attack on Cap Finistère

On 8th December 2015, CROSS Etel was alerted by the Maritime Medical Consultation Centre (MMCC) in Toulouse that a 68 year old British passenger had suffered a heart attack on board the Brittany Ferries ship, Cap Finistère. CROSS Etel were notified at 1745hrs when the ship was some 104 miles south of Penmarc’h in the Finistère Department of Brittany. A conference call was held between CROSS Etel, MMC Toulouse and SAMU and it was decided to evacuate the passenger by helicopter. A Cayman helicopter from the French Air Base at Lanvéoc-Poulmic was tasked and took off at 1839hrs, reaching the ship at 1917hrs. The patient was airlifted on to the helicopter and was flown to the Cornouaille Hospital in Quimper, arriving at 2055hrs. The photograph shows Cap Finistère in the English Channel inward for Portsmouth on 26th July 2015.


Passenger Dies on Explorer of the Seas

On 7th December 2015, the Royal Caribbean cruise ship, Explorer of the Seas had to delay her departure from Tauranga in New Zealand due to the death of a passenger. The ship had been due to sail for Wellington at 1700hrs, but her departure was delayed for around an hour until 1800hrs. The ship was on a 14 night cruise having sailed from Sydney in Australia on 2nd December. I have no details of the passenger or their cause of death, but the reports I have seen have stated that it is not believed that the death was suspicious. The photograph shows Explorer of the Seas berthed in Cadiz on 6th August 2015


EMS Majestic has Trouble in the Straits of Dover

On 6th December 2015, the Antiguan flagged coaster, EMS Majestic, transmitted a Mayday call at 1909hrs while on passage from Rotterdam to Saint Malo with a cargo of grain. In the Mayday call it was reported that the ship had started taking in water in the engine room and was in danger of sinking. When the call was made, EMS Majestic was in the Dover Strait traffic separation zone between the Pas de Calais and Brighton. The vessel reported that she had seven crew members on board and a number of ships in the area responded to the Mayday call. HM Coastguard helicopters from Lee on Solent and Lydd were tasked and went to the scene along with the Eastbourne RNLI Lifeboat. The research vessel Thor Frigg took the ship in tow and headed for Portsmouth. The water ingress was brought under control by 2300hrs and non-essential crew members were airlifted from the ship by a Coastguard helicopter. The ship berthed in Portsmouth during the afternoon of 7th December 2015. The photograph shows EMS Majestic berthed at Grove Wharf on the River Trent on 3rd July 2011.


Victoria I Sustains Storm Damage in the Baltic

On 4th December 2015, the Tallink ferry, Victoria I, was damaged in stormy conditions in the Baltic. She had sailed from Tallinn for Stockholm with 1500 passengers on board at 1715hrs and was damaged by several large waves at around 2300hrs. A radar antenna on her bow was damaged and two windows in the conference room on 6 Deck were smashed following which the ferry began to take on water with several corridors being flooded. Fortunately there was no damage to the ship’s propulsion or navigation systems and the crew managed to carry out temporary repairs to the damage. However, as there was no sign of the stormy conditions abating, the Captain decided to turn back and return to Tallinn. On arrival there at 0600hrs on 5th December an inspection was carried out and one crew member was taken to hospital with suspected concussion. The photograph shows Victoria I sailing from Stockholm on 28th June 2008.


Emsmoon Severely Damages Rail Bridge

On 3rd December 2015, having sailed from Papenburg at around 1800hrs, the Antiguan flagged general cargo vessel, Emsmoon, struck the Ems bridge carrying the Leer to Groningen railway near Weener. The accident occurred at 1820hrs and the ship became entangled with the wreckage of the bridge span that had been displaced. The bascule bridge was severely damaged in the accident with several major sections of the bridge falling into the river. The bridge has now been closed for an indefinite period. The Emsmoon was eventually freed from the steelwork by the tug Gerd Bliede and berthed in Papenburg at 2150hrs having sustained damage to her bows. The photograph shows Emsmoon at Berth 108 in Southampton on 30th April 2011.


Thursday 3rd December 2015

Lev Yashin Suffers Engine Failure in Sea of Okhotsk

On 29th November 2015, while on passage from the Gulf of Anadyr on the Bering Sea in northeast Siberia to Qingdao in eastern Shandong Province in China, the Russian general cargo vessel, Lev Yashin, suffered an engine failure. The breakdown occurred in the Sea of Okhotsk west of Paramushir Island in the northern part of the Kuril Islands chain. On 1st December, the Russian Navy salvage tug, MB-105 was able to take the ship in tow and moved her to a sheltered anchorage near Shumshu Island. Later she was taken in tow again and headed for Petropavlovsk where she was due to arrive on 3rd December. The photograph shows Lev Yashin, then trading as Corn Crest, anchored in Gibraltar Bay on 29th April 2009.

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