U-Ming seafarer dies in mishap

Credit: Dietmar Hasenpusch

Taiwanese bulk carrier owner U-Ming Marine Transport has confirmed to Safety at Sea that one of its seafarers was killed in a mishap on a Capesize vessel off Indonesia.

A company spokesperson said that the 2014-built Cape India was sailing from China to Australia when an accident occurred as a self-contained breathing apparatus was being filled with air in the fire control room. The spokesperson asserted that the incident was not a “gas explosion” that was mentioned in other media reports.

IHS Markit Maritime & Trade’s vessel-tracking data shows that the 188,000 dwt Cape India left Tangshan, China, on 17 October, and was due to arrive in the Australian iron ore port of Port Walcott on 1 November.

The vessel was diverted to Balikpapan, Indonesia, after the accident on 28 October, but the seafarer, He Fengzhi, 26, died a day later in the hospital.

U-Ming said, “U Ming deeply regrets the loss of our seafarer and we are in constant touch with his family at this difficult time.

“We shall be launching a full investigation into this incident and we will also co-operate fully with official investigations which will take place when the vessel arrives in Australia.”