Tokyo, Jan 25 (EFE).- Thirteen of 22 crew members traveling on a cargo ship that sank during the early morning off the Nagasaki prefecture, in southwestern Japan, were rescued while the search continues for the rest, Japan’s coast guard told EFE.
Four patrol boats and several aircraft continued the search for the nine missing people from the Jintan freighter, registered in Hong Kong, which made several emergency calls Tuesday night and during the early morning, warning the ship was sinking.
Rescue teams said they believe the missing could be adrift in lifeboats, based on information from three private vessels sailing in the area at the time of the incident that rescued five crew members.
The other eight crew members located so far were found by members of Japan’s army and the South Korean Coast Guard, who joined their Japanese counterparts in the rescue efforts after also receiving emergency alerts from the ship.
Strong winds and the choppy seas amid an intense cold wave in the region are complicating search and rescue efforts.
The sinking occurred off Japanese waters as the 6,651-ton ship was heading to the port of the South Korean city of Incheon, carrying timber and other goods.
The ship was sailing with 22 people on board, 14 Chinese citizens and eight Myanmar nationals. EFE