The Korean Coast Guard announced that a cargo ship registered in Hong Kong sank off the southern island of Jeju today, Wednesday, with more than 20 people on board.
The Korean Coast Guard said: “A cargo ship registered in Hong Kong carrying 22 crew members sank off the southern island of Jeju today, and 3 of them were rescued, and the search is still going on for the others.”
The Coast Guard stated that there were 14 Chinese and 8 Myanmar people on board the ship, Jin Tian, and it was carrying timber weighing 6,551 tons when it sank in the water 148.2 kilometers southeast of Seongpyo city on Jeju Island at 1:45 am today.
He added, “It appears that the ship sank when it sent out an emergency positioning radio (EPIRB) distress signal, which is an emergency positioning system.”
It was found that the ship sent its first distress signal through the digital selective communication system at 1:45 am, before it lost contact an hour later.
Rescue 3 of its crew
The agency quoted “Yonhap,” South Korean officials as saying: “Three crew members were rescued, and the Coast Guard is conducting a joint search and rescue operation with their Japanese counterparts to search for the other twenty.”
It is noteworthy that last April, the South Korean Foreign Ministry announced that a ship with 6 South Koreans on board had gone missing in the waters west of Taiwan, and a search and rescue operation was underway there.
The ministry stated that the Taiwan Coast Guard Department had received a distress call from the ship “Kyoto 1”, which was on its way from the port of Busan, South Korea, to the port of Batam, Indonesia.
“Taiwanese authorities sent patrol boats and helicopters to the site after receiving the distress call,” the ministry said, and asked ships navigating the waters near the site to cooperate in the search.
In turn, the South Korean Maritime Police sent a patrol boat to support the search and rescue operation, and the ship “Kyoto 1” of the Sea Star Shipping Company in the Emirates carries the flag of Sierra Leone and weighs 322 tons.
It should be noted that Jeju Island witnessed the passage of Typhoon Chanthu last December, which caused heavy rains and strong winds, flooding low-rise neighborhoods, downing trees and lighting poles, and disrupting flights.