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Emergency Response for Listing Car Carrier Taking on Water 

listing cargo ship off Russian Black Sea port
Salvage operations are underway to stabilize the listing vessel (Gorodsochi/Telegram)

Jun 20, 2022 1:42 PM by

The Maritime Executive


Salvage and dewatering efforts are underway for a Cameroon-flagged ro-ro car carrier, the Linder Bulut,  that began taking on water near the Russian port of Tuapse on the northeastern shore of the Black Sea.  Russian officials are reporting that the situation is stable and that they have been able to reduce the list by approximately two degrees.

The 22-year-old vessel, which is operating transporting cargoes across the Black Sea, was arriving at the Russian port on June 18 on its regular run from Samsun, Turkey. It was reportedly carrying a cargo of refrigerated fruits and vegetables. Reports indicate that the 4,500 dwt vessel, which is 465 feet long, is regularly crossing the Black Sea from Turkey to Russia.

Saturday evening as the vessel was approaching the entrance to the Russian port, the captain contacted the local marine rescue service and port officials requesting assistance. A statement from the Russian marine rescue service, Rosmorrechflot, said the captain reported a malfunction in the ballast water system which was causing the vessel to take on water. The crew was attempting repairs but the captain feared the vessel would capsize. He requested tugs to assist in either docking or grounding the vessel to prevent the vessel from listing further. 




Eyewitnesses posted images to social media showing the vessel with a significant list to starboard. The Russian emergency rescue vessel came alongside and decided to ground the vessel while also providing additional pump capacity to dewater the ship. They grounded the vessel Saturday evening but later suspended the pumping operation overnight. By Sunday, they were reporting that water had reached the engine room of the vessel.

Divers on Sunday inspected the hull reporting that there were several holes that required repair. An emergency boom was also strung around the vessel but officials reported no oil leaks. At its worst point officials said the vessel had a 15 degree to list, but at the last report they had been successful in reducing it to 13.3 degrees. They reported that there were no injuries among the 28 crewmembers aboard. The vessel is currently about 800 feet offshore and once it is stabilized the plan is to move it to a dock in the port.


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