Clifton salvage operations halted

2012-05-13 14:14
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Trawler runs aground at Clifton beach

A 50m fishing trawler has run aground at First Beach in Clifton, Cape Town. Salvage operations are under way.

Cape Town - All salvaging operations of a 50m fishing trawler that ran aground at First Beach in Clifton on Saturday has been halted, the Cape Town disaster risk management centre said.

In a statement spokesperson Wilfred Solomons-Johannes said operations would resume at first daylight on Sunday.

"The positioning and presence of the vessel has the potential to undermine the environmental, economic, and social potential of a key area of the coastline."

The trawler ran aground at around 05:15, Solomons-Johannes said.

There were reportedly 90 tons of fuel and ammonia on board.

It was not known what made the trawler run aground. Its engines remained in working order and generators continued to work.

The thick fog was suspected to have played a role.

By Saturday afternoon the National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) confirmed that the crew members of the trawler had been rescued.

"Two NSRI rescue swimmers were placed on board the vessel and Taiwanese consulate staff and the ships agent assisted the NSRI with language interpretations between the... crew and NSRI rescuers," spokesperson Craig Lambinon said.

Of the 28 Taiwanese crew members and dog on board, 19 were evacuated. The dog remained on board on the insistence of the captain, its owner.

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