THREE VESSEL COLLISIONS IN ONE WEEK

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Three ship collisions in the South China Sea, Japan, and Malta resulted in the sinking of at least two vessels and two crewmembers missing, various news reports said. In the most serious incident, TradeWinds reported the Chinese ship Guo Shun 21 collided with the Vietnamese cargo vessel Rhanh Dat 01 col, 120 miles off Vũng Tàu, Vietnam in the disputed South China Sea on Monday. The Vietnamese ship later sank; nine crewmembers and a passenger were rescued, but the ship’s captain and chief engineer remain missing. In another incident on Monday, two Japanese vessels, the Keihin Maru 8 and the Eastern Phoenix, collided off the coast of Kawasaki. The Eastern Phoenix suffered only minor damage, but the Keihin Maru 8 was flooded and spilled part of its cargo of diesel fuel into the bay. No deaths or injuries were reported. In the third incident, which wreaked havoc Thursday in Malta’s main harbor, an 8,383-ton cargo ship called Maria collided with and capsized a small Italian fishing trawler, then hit the Congo-flagged Ship Union, which in turn collided with a tugboat. Despite the chaos, none of the ships was seriously damaged except the trawler, whose crew was pulled to safety by rescue personnel, according to The Malta Times.

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