Bodies of Vietnamese victims in oil tanker blast found

By Khanh Lynh   January 16, 2019 | 11:59 pm PT
Bodies of Vietnamese victims in oil tanker blast found
The Aulac Fortune is on fire after the explosion off Hong Kong on January 8, 2019. Photo by AFP
The bodies of two Vietnamese men missing after an oil tanker explosion off Hong Kong earlier this month were found Thursday.

One body was found near Lantau Island and the other near Lamma Island, where the explosion happened, Tran Thanh Huan, Consul General of Vietnam in Hong Kong and Macau, said Thursday.

With the discovery of the two bodies, the number of casualties in the accident has gone up to three. There were 25 Vietnamese crew on board the tanker when the explosion happened, and 22 were rescued.

The three dead have been identified as Pham The Dung, Tran Hoang Phong and Nguyen Van Cong.

Huan said the Consulate General's office would help the three victims' families complete procedures to fly to Hong Kong and prepare for their funerals.

The 22 surviving Vietnamese crew would be sent back home once authorities finish investigating the incident.

"We’re trying to get the crew return to their country before the Lunar New Year Festival and reunite with their families," Huan said.

On January 8, the Aulac Fortune, the oil tanker registered under the HCMC-based Au Lac Company, exploded while it was being refueled off Hong Kong on January 8. Investigators believed the explosion originated in the cargo section of the tanker, which contained flammable gases.

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