GEORGE TOWN, Penang state, Malaysia Commercial fishing vessel Xin Yi Yi from Hong Kong which was approaching Penang Port to dock capsized after hitting an artificial reef 2.65 nautical miles from Barat Pulau Rimau, near here early yesterday.
The vessel was reported have hit the reef made up of a wreck and a cement ship at 5.30am.
Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) Penang branch deputy director of operations Hamizan Harun said the captain, a Chinese national, and four crew members, one from Hong Kong and the others from China, aged between 25 and 40 years, were rescued by the Penang Marine Operations Force and fishermen operating in the area.
“No one was hurt, he told reporters.
He said the 43.6-metre long vessel was scheduled to pick up a cargo of live fish at Penang Port before continuing its journey to Langkawi.
According to the ship’s agent, total losses were estimated at RM3.5 million and that the MMEA had commenced a probe into the incident.
Meanwhile, the captain, Shek Shing Hei, said he was the one piloting the ship and it was very dark, foggy and the sea choppy which caused him to miss the buoy indicating the presence of the artificial reef.
He said the flashing light on the buoy was not working at the time.
“There was a loud bang before the ship tilted to the right and capsized, I immediately ordered the crew to abandon ship. We were fortunate there were fishing boats nearby, they helped us alert the authorities.
“Part of the cargo on board including live fish sank, we could not save anything, he said in Mandarin which was translated by the agent.
The four crew members were identified as Chen Jian Hua, Cai Rong Kun, Jiang Li Xing and Chen Shi Xin.NNN-BERNAMA
Source: NAM News Network