|Russian trawler sinks off Norway coast.|
| [24.04.2009, 04:34pm, Fri. GMT]|
|The captain of a Russian fishing boat died on Friday after being rescued along with the rest of his crew after their trawler sank in the Barents Sea near Norway's northern coast, Russian officials said. A Russian fishing industry official said the Koralnes, part of the Sevrybkom-1 company fleet, sank shortly after sending a distress signal at about 9:20 a.m. Moscow time (05:20 GMT). Fifteen crewmembers drifted in an inflatable raft until another Russian trawler picked them up, while two men spent sometime in the arctic water."A Russian trawler rescued 15 Koralnes crewmembers from a raft, while a Norwegian rescue helicopter picked up the ship's captain and senior mechanic from the water," Sergei Vaganov said. |
Norwegian police said one of the two sailors, who were transported by a Sea Hawk helicopter to a hospital in the Norwegian city of Tromsoe, died from hypothermia.
Another Russian official later confirmed that the captain of the ship had unexpectedly died in the hospital, despite arriving in a stable condition.
Alexander Savelyev, a spokesman for the Russian Federal Agency for Fishery, said that in his opinion the cause of the tragedy was the poor state of the vessel, which was built in 1987, and complacency on the part of the ship's owner.
"This 'second-hand'...vessel had no watertight bulkheads and it took on water within seven minutes," he said.
He also said that another reason for the tragedy was the inattentiveness of the Sevrybkom-1 company to the technical state of its ships.
"This is complacency from the owner of the ship with regard to safety... He is more worried about his pocket than the people who are earning this money for him," Savelyev added.
He added that 70% of the Russian fishing fleet was in a critical condition.