A dramatic rescue scene unfolded in the high seas off Norway on Monday, as a Dutch cargo ship was adrift. The ship Eemslift Hendrika was adrift in the Norwegian sea as they were caught in stormy weather. Many of the crew on board the ship had to jump in the cold water to be rescued while some others were airlifted. Of the 12 who were rescued, 4 had to jump to sea while 8 were airlifted.
The Dramatic Rescue Operation
The ship was carrying numerous boats from Bremerhaven in Germany and was on its way to Kolvereid in Norway when it became dangerously listed. The captain immediately issued a distressed call. By then some of the cargo had already been displaced.
The Rescue team from the Norwegian Rescue Services evacuated the ship’s crew in a 2 stage plan:
- First, a helicopter airlifted 8 crew from the deck.
- The remaining 4 couldn’t be airlifted as the ship was being tossed by the waves and had a severe list.
- So, they had to be retrieved from the sea hence the necessity of jumping into the water.
- In a video that went viral, a man in an orange survival suit was seen jumping into the ocean from the ship’s stern.
Ship Still Drifting
While this was happening, the ship suffered an engine failure and drifted towards the Norwegian coastline. It was found 130km northwest of Alesund on Tuesday morning.
After being listed at 40-50 degrees during the whole process, the ship is now listed at about 30 degrees as the weight is reduced. One of the boats fell off the deck and made it possible
Risk of Sinking
“The situation seems to be more stable but there is still a risk that it could capsize,” said Hans-Petter Mortensholm from the Norwegian Coastal Administration (Kystverket).
“We want to put someone on board to arrange for a tow as soon as the weather conditions allow,” he added.
The ship has 350 cubic metres of heavy fuel oil, 75 cubic metres of diesel and 10 cubic metres of lubricating oil.
As of Tuesday, a vessel from the Norwegian Coast Guard is aiding the ship. The Dutch company, Smit Salvage which salvaged the Suez Canal grounded ship Ever Given has been called.
Marine Insight does not own the rights of the video.