Boat sinks in Batangas; one dead, 19 rescued

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Batangas: A ship officer is dead while 19 others were rescued, more than 12 hours after their cargo vessel, M/V Sea Merchant, sank      in the vicinity of Lobo, Batangas City  on Thursday.

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Batangas Coastguard Commander Gregorio Adel identified the fatality as Chief Engineer Almarito Anciano, adding that the latter may have hit his head while jumping off the sinking vessel.

M/V Sea Merchant was loaded with 20,040 bags of cement and was bound for Antique province when the incident occurred. It departed the port of Bauan, Batangas at 12 noon on Thursday when it capsized around 5 nautical miles off Malabrigo lighthouse in Lobo, Batangas.

The vessel, according to the Coast Guard report, encountered big waves and strong winds when the incident happened.

Eleven crewmembers were safely rescued by another passing cargo vessel MT Mactan while the remaining 8 were rescued by MV Divina Gracia operated by Montenegro shipping lines.

Those rescued include: Celzo Rey Baiza, 48, Chief mate; Rommel Zoleta, 19, Deck Cadet; Constantino Tores, 30, Crane Operator; Philip Solomon, 31, Oiler; Lester John Carinos, 21, Oiler; Manny Mendiola, 28, able-bodied seaman; Ronnie Lebguban, 36, able-bodied seaman; Franklin Ibanez, 34; Rochie Jakosalem, 22, Engine Cadet; John Patrick Saplot, 20, Engine Cadet; and Leonard Roma, 52, Crane Operator.

In a GMA News report, both Captain Luzvimindo Casipong and oiler Rizaldy Subo were taken to the nearest hospital as most of them stayed in the waters for 12 hours before the rescue.

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