Bangkok — Thai navy ships and helicopters have been looking out on Monday for greater than two dozen sailors nonetheless lacking greater than 12 hours after a warship sank in tough seas in a single day within the Gulf of Thailand.
As of midday, 75 sailors from the HTMS Sukhothai corvette had been rescued and 31 have been nonetheless within the water, the navy stated. The excessive waves that brought on the accident had lessened since Sunday evening’s sinking however have been nonetheless excessive sufficient to hazard small boats, the navy stated.
Some sailors survived by leaping right into a life raft at evening, photographs shared by the Royal Thai Navy confirmed, based on Agence France-Presse.
One crew member interviewed by Thai PBS tv stated he needed to float within the sea for 3 hours earlier than he was rescued. He stated the ship was buffeted by 10-foot-high waves because it was sinking Sunday evening, complicating rescue efforts.
“The waves are still high and we cannot search for them from the horizontal line. We have to fly the helicopters and search for them from a bird’s-eye view instead,” navy spokesman Adm. Pokkrong Monthatphalin informed Thai PBS.
Eleven of the rescued sailors have been being handled in a hospital. The navy denied an area media report that one dying had been confirmed, saying the fatality was from an accident involving one other boat.
Strong winds blew seawater onto the ship and knocked out its electrical system Sunday night, making it tough to regulate. The navy dispatched three frigates and two helicopters with cellular pumping machines to attempt to help the disabled ship by eradicating seawater however it could not achieve this due to the sturdy winds.
The lack of energy enabled extra seawater to stream into the vessel, inflicting it to record and sink.
Thailand’s Meteorological Department had issued a climate advisory for the final space only a few hours earlier than the accident, saying that waves within the Gulf of Thailand have been anticipated to be 7-14 price) excessive with thundershowers. It prompt that each one ships “proceed with caution” and warned small craft to not go to sea till Tuesday.
The warship had been on patrol 20 miles from the pier at Bangsaphan district in Prachuap Khiri Khan province. Pokkrong stated the ship had been on its common patrol to help any fishing boats needing assist.
“Our top priority now is to rescue all the sailors. We will plan to have the ship salvaged later,” he stated. The search was being performed in an space of 6.2 sq. miles across the website of the sinking.
While northern and central Thailand are seeing their coldest temperatures of the 12 months, far southern Thailand has been experiencing storms and flooding in current days. Ships have been warned to remain ashore.
The Sukhothai was a U.S.-built corvette in use since 1987, the Reuters news company experiences. AFP says it was constructed by the now-defunct Tacoma Boatbuilding Company, citing the US Naval Institute.
With a most displacement of 959 tons and a size of 252 toes, it was about midsize for a corvette, a kind of armed vessel that sometimes is used for patrolling shut offshore waters.