Article

Greek Navy minehunting vessel cut in half during collision with Maersk Launceston


by Marine-Pilots.com - published on 30 October 2020 246 -

Source: YouTube

Maersk Launceston, a Madeira flagged containership, collided with the Hellenic Navy minesweeper HS Kallisto (M63) in the Saronic Gulf, off the Greek Port of Piraeus, on 27 October.

The 4,500 TEU boxship, owned by Germany’s John T. Essberger Group, was on its way from Piraeus to the Turkish port of Canakkale when it rammed into the naval vessel, cutting it into two.

Maersk Launceston suffered no obvious damages while HS Kallisto reported water ingress and tilted heavily on its starboard side, according to VesselsValue.

Two crew members of the Greek naval vessel sustained injuries and were transported to the Athens Naval Hospital, the navy said.

The 870-foot, 50,700-gross-tonnage Maersk Launceston had departed Piraeus and was said to be bound for the port of Çanakkale in Turkey. The ship’s present owner is the Essberger company, based in the German port of Hamburg, which describes itself as a “leading operator of chemical tankers within Europe.”

The exact cause of the accident remains unclear, but local media reports described the freighter “passing over” the mine Greek Navy minehunter as the latter was leaving port. The captain of the Maersk Launceston has reportedly been arrested.

No injuries have been reported aboard Maersk Launceston which has a crew of 22 seafarers. Danish shipping major Maersk said that Maersk Launceston crew participated in the rescue operation that was immediately launched by local authorities.
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