Japan govt: Trawler owners must co-operate

2012-05-18 07:17

Johannesburg - The Japanese embassy is concerned about a 50 metre-long fishing trawler that ran aground off First Beach in Clifton, Cape Town, it said on Thursday.

"The government of Japan has strongly urged the owner of the vessel to fully co-operate with the South African authorities and to take urgent actions help salvage the vessel," it said in a statement.

"The embassy of Japan will continue to co-operate fully with the government of the republic of South Africa for the expeditious salvaging of the vessel."

It expressed "sincere appreciation" to the SA Maritime Authority, the National Sea Rescue Institute and the South African government for attempting to salvage the ship.

The Japanese vessel, named Eihatsu Maru, ran aground at 05:15 on Saturday in thick fog.

Team to drain fuel

The City of Cape Town said earlier in the week that attempts at salvaging the ship would continue into Friday.

On Wednesday, the salvage team welded into the trawler a bracket which could withstand the required pull force.

The team would also drain 90 to 110 tons of diesel fuel from the ship into a rubber bladder on the beach which would then be transferred to a fuel tanker.

"Traffic services has been requested to assist in securing access on the road, for the fuel tanker to park at the most efficient point for fuel loading," the city said.

"The salvage team will attempt to tow the vessel off the beach on Friday, once the fuel has been removed and the bracket secured," the municipality said.

Of the 28 Taiwanese crew members on board, 19 were evacuated. The remaining crew and the captain were required to stay on the ship under international maritime law.

  • Lyndatjie - 2012-05-18 07:31

    Maybe this is a new chapter in "Land Invasion".... Or maybe Japan will be sending a war ship to come and pull it out - fire a couple of warning shots and voila! Economical coup de ete...

      uwe.klopfer - 2012-05-18 08:35

      WTF ?

      Chris - 2012-05-18 08:40

      Was it poooooooza Thursday?

      lydonmcg - 2012-05-18 08:51

      That's one of the most retarded things I've heard on News24 this week.

      Jack - 2012-05-18 09:05

      @Lyndatjie, i love your imagination...but please dont go full retard on us.

      JHNortje - 2012-05-18 09:32

      I am just wondering what is a Japanese fishing trawler is doing on CT shore?

  • Squeegee - 2012-05-18 07:38

    Make them pay for the whole process. While we are at it, ask what this boat was doing so close to our coast. Confiscate the cargo. - 2012-05-18 08:19

      They weren't fishing so close to our shores. There are no tuna in that vicinity. They were heading for port. Looks all above board, npothing illegal. It is likely that the captain took a wrong turning in the fog. How that happened, no idea. Once he realised he screwed up they kept sailing trying to correct the mistake. So they screwed up. But the trawler owners really need to co-operate in all ways, not just financially. If the owners abandon the trawler then the Maritime officials will be able to atach the vessel and sell it, its cargo etc.

      camp.j - 2012-05-18 08:53

      Yes a wrong turning is understandable, i once took a wrong turning on my way to Durban and ended up in Cape Town :)

      Squeegee - 2012-05-18 11:09

      Camp, perhaps they were smoking the same stuff you were..

      Kevin - 2012-05-18 13:27

      Remember a few years ago a Japanese long line trawler ran aground about 5am at Paarden Island a few years ago. There the crew were simply all asleep. I suspect same thing here.

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