The tireless efforts of a rescue team tasked with the responsibility of towing the cargo vessel MV Portland Bay stranded off the Sydney coast since Monday have been referred to as “heroic.”
After two failed search and rescue attempts, the vessel made it into Port Botany at about 2 pm this afternoon, after a rescue operation deploying four tug boats started. The chief executive of the Port Authority of NSW, Philip Holliday, mentioned that the conditions eased enough for the tow to progress.
The MV Portland Bay departed from Port Kembla on Sunday afternoon and headed toward Melbourne but reportedly lost power on Monday due to poor weather conditions.
It drifted half a nautical mile toward the cliffs in the Royal National Parhe south of Sydney.
A strategy to airlift crew members from the vessel was abandoned due to precarious conditions.
The NSW Port Authority has confirmed that all 21 members are safe after surviving two stormy nights at sea.
Mr. Holliday mentioned that the challenges related to the rescue operation were not lost on the ones involved.
That sentiment was also mirrored by Lindsay Cavanagh, the Marine Pilot responsible for taking the ship into the port.
The ship’s engine will undergo the necessary repairs that will take several days with 21 crew members on board.
The Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) has initiated a transport safety examination into the bulk carrier’s loss of engine power.
The Australia Maritime Safety Authority will send two inspectors and a specialist lead investigator to assess the mechanical safety and compliance of the vessel with international conventions and AAustralia’slaw.
References: ABC, news.com.au