Vietnam recovers last three bodies stuck in sunken cargo ship

By Phuoc Tuan   April 1, 2017 | 01:23 pm GMT+7
Vietnam recovers last three bodies stuck in sunken cargo ship
Rescuers during the search for people missing from the sunken ship in southern Vietnam. Photo by VnExpress/Phuoc Tuan

A tanker belonging to state-run Petrolimex oil group was involved in the crash, which drowned nine people.

Maritime rescuers have Saturday morning found the last three bodies stuck in a cargo ship which sank with 11 people following a collision earlier this week with a tanker from state-run Petrolimex group, rescuers said.

Divers found the bodies at around 9 a.m., two of them stuck in the engine room, said deputy director Vu Viet Hung of the Vietnam Maritime Search and Rescue Coordination Center.  

He said investigation will be launched after the sunken ship is lifted.

The three were among the nine men killed after their cargo ship, Hai Thanh 26, sank about 44 nautical miles to the east of Vung Tau City early Tuesday morning while carrying clinker to the Mekong Delta city of Can Tho. Seven of the bodies have been found inside the ship and two others drifting.

Truong Van Minh, an executive of Vietnam Tanker Co, the transportation arm of Petrolimex, said Friday that one of its tankers, Petrolimex 14, had collided with Hai Thanh 26. Petrolimex owns around half of Vietnam's market for distribution of fuel and oil products.

Minh said the Petrolimex crew at the time “was unable to identify the status” of the other ship.

Petrolimex 14 was the ship which found a raft carrying the two survivors of the sunken ship, including its captain, at 7 a.m. on Tuesday.

Kien Thuc online newspaper said the sunken ship belongs to Phuong Thinh shipping company in the northern province of Thai Binh.

Search results found the ship was lying 30 meters under water and damaged in the middle of its body. No oil spill concern has been raised.