The captain of a cargo ship heavily damaged in a collision off Chios island with another cargo ship, both foreign-flagged, refused help from Greek rescuers and port authorities on Friday and headed to Turkiye.
No injuries were reported in the total crew of 32 and neither ship was taking in water or carrying cargo.
Vanuatu-flagged ‘ANT’ had a crew of 13, including 10 Turkish nationals, and had left Alexandria on its way to Ukraine. It suffered serious damage half-way across its hull. Singapore-flagged ‘Potentia’ had a crew of 19 and had left Izmir, heading to France.
Both ships’ crew remained onboard, while Greek Coast Guard authorities sent 7 patrol boats and an open-sea boat, augmented by a Hellenic Navy ship, a Hellenic Air Force Canadair CL-215 aircraft and 3 Super Puma helicopters. Additionally, boats sailing in the area converged on the site, as did a boat of the Turkish Coast Guard.
In a Friday evening update, it was reported that ANT’s captain denied help offered by Greek rescuers and the Hellenic Navy’s operations room, both of whom clarified that the ship was sailing in Greek search & rescue waters, and if help was needed it should be requested from Greek authorities. ANT was then escorted by the Turkish coast guard vessel to Turkiye.
Meanwile, two tugboats sailed from Piraeus and Lavrion heading toward the Potentia, whose captain has not called for the evacuation of its crew as of this writing.
The cause of the accident remains unspecified.