A salvage operation is underway to retrieve a large capsized fishing vessel with an unknown amount of fuel on board from the sea near Cape Point National Park, the SA Maritime Safety Authority (Samsa) confirmed on Tuesday.
< p>The 24-meter-long Restless Wave capsized in the early hours of Sunday morning, resulting in the successful rescue of all 12 crew members who were unharmed in the accident, which is being investigated.
The overturned ship however, was adrift near Cape Point, raising concerns about a potential pollution hazard.
On Tuesday, Samsa said, “Earlier today, salvors and port officials met to formalize the process of towing the vessel to Cape Town. A separate vessel will be on hand to retrieve the fishing gear once the Restless Wave has docked and left the area.”
The vessel is a purse seine vessel, built by local boat builder Tallie Marine for the local fishing industry was built.
Donna Tallie, spokeswoman for Tallie Marine, said: “We are especially grateful to all the crew on board who were rescued. We hope the ship can be recovered as soon as possible.”
Marine conservation photographer Jean Tresfon, who captured images of the capsized ship during a microlight flight this week, said in a post on Facebook: “After I Being away for several weeks I’ve strayed a bit from the local news and I certainly didn’t expect to find a large inverted hull just off the coast of Platboom when I flew around Cape Point to document the marine life yesterday.’ /p>
“Fishing is a tough industry and despite the amazing result with no fatalities, the trauma of suddenly stepping into the water in the dark and freezing cold must be horrific and my thoughts are with the crew and their families”, Tresfon said.
National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) crews were alerted after a mayday distress call was received by Telkom Maritime Radio Services’ marine VHF radio just before 5am Sunday was approached.
“It was confirmed that the fishing vessel Oceana Concord had safely rescued seven Casua 10 crew members, the fishing vessel Oceana Mercury had safely rescued four casualty crew members and the fishing vessel Alert III had safely saved one casualty crew member said the NSRI.
“The NSRI Simon’s Town was withdrawn after receiving confirmation that none of the 12 were injured.”
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