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Vietnamese cargo ship runs aground on Sabah coral reef

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Vietnamese cargo ship runs aground on Sabah coral reef

Post Number:#1  Postby timyang » Wed Dec 15, 2010 11:13 pm

SANDAKAN, Dec 15 (Bernama) -- A faulty buoy light had caused a cargo ship from Vietnam to run aground on the coral reef in waters close to Pulau Jambongan in Beluran, about 70 nautical miles from here last Monday.

The ship, registered as Hai Dong 27 and laden with 2,700 tonnes of rice, was on its way from the port of Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, to Tawau, but went out of course while sailing in Beluran waters and ran aground on the coral reef as the buoy light in the area was not functioning.

Enforcement chief of the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) in Sandakan, Captain Mohamad Onn Khalil, said all the 16 Vietnamese crew on board were safe.

He said the cargo ship was still stranded at the coral reef and it was being monitored by the MMEA and the Royal Malaysian Navy vessels in the area.

"Operation to tow the ship from the coral reef is expected to be carried out soon by an agent of the shipping company here," he told reporters after the Sandakan MMEA monthly assembly here today.

Mohamad Onn said the Vietnamese cargo ship was the second to run aground on the coral reef near Pulau Jambongan this year.

He said vessels passing the area could get off course due to the faulty buoy lights , which he believed could be due to vandalism.

As such, he advised residents and fishermen in the area not to tamper with the buoy lights.
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