Namport Tugboat Sinks in Walvis

A Namport Tug boat this week sank in Walvis bay. Namport said in a statement that at approximately 19h40 on Tuesday, whilst busy with tugboat operations, the Namport tugboat “Omanda” informed Port Control that they had an emergency on board and that they were taking on water in the engine room. The boat was in the Port of Walvis Bay fishing harbour close to the Merlus fishing factory. The tugboat master was then instructed to steam to the closest available berth in the fishing harbour before losing engine power, which was the Merlus fishing factory jetty.

Other Namport tugboats were then dispatched to the scene to provide immediate assistance. Emergency procedures were implemented and all relevant personnel were called to the scene at the Merlus jetty where the boat was now tied up.

The boat was still taking on water and severely listing to the starboard side. Pollution combating equipment such as oil containment booms were deployed around the vessel to prevent any fuel spill from escaping the immediate area around the vessel.

All possible efforts to stop the boat from sinking were made but to no avail, the boat sunk next to the Merlus jetty at 23 00 hours on Tuesday night which is where she still remains.

The cause of the accident is still unknown as exact details of the incident are still being investigated., fortunately no other vessels were involved in the accident, no person was injured and there was no damage to any third party property. Namport’s Chief Executive Officer Bisey Uirab said the incident will not affect port operations as Namport maintains a fleet of tugboats.

Source : Namibia Economist