32 missing after tanker collision off China's coast

08 January, 2018, 04:02 | Author: Hope Soto

A tanker has collided with a bulk carrier in the East China Sea, leaving 32, the entire tanker crew, missing. The Crystal's crew members were all Chinese nationals. It said South Korea also sent a search plane and a coastguard ship. Chinese maritime authorities have dispatched eight vessels, including three specialised cleansing vessels, for search and rescue.

It was not immediately clear how much environmental damage had been caused or the volume of oil spilled into the sea.

The 21 crew members of the freighter were rescued, however there was no contact to the crew members of the oil tanker, which was transporting oil from Iran to South Korea, Xinhua reported. That is equivalent to just under one million barrels, worth about $76 million, based on global crude oil prices. "There is an oil slick and we are pushing forward with rescue efforts".

The Sanchi has operated under five different names since it was built in 2008, according the United Nations -run International Maritime Organization.

There were 30 Iranians and two Bangladeshis on the tanker, but all were missing as of Sunday, Chinese authorities said.

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Reuters reports that the Panama-flagged Sanchi is managed by the National Iranian Tanker Company (NITC), owned by Bright Shipping and chartered by Hanwha Total Petrochemical.

This is the first major accident involving an Iranian oil tanker since worldwide sanctions were lifted in January 2016.

It's the second collision for a ship from the National Iranian Tanker Co.in less than a year and a half.

Gerry Shih is an Associated Press writer.

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