Captain Pedrito Serencio answers questions from journalists in General Santos City in the southern Philippines. (Photo by Jake Narte)
GENERAL SANTOS CITY, Philippines (Mindanao Examiner / Aug. 10, 2011) – Two crew members of a Philippine cargo ship were reported missing and 21 others rescued after their vessel collided with a container ship in the southern Philippines, officials said on Wednesday.
The collision occurred off Maasim town in Sarangani province late Tuesday during a bad weather. Most of the rescued crew members were taken to General Santos City on Wednesday as search for the missing seamen continues.
The Coast Guard said the cargo ship MV Bulk Carrier 1, which was carrying 16,000 bags of rice, sank off Matil Point, about 4 nautical miles southwest of Maasim town, after colliding with the Monrovian ship MV HS Puccini.
The MV HS Puccini, skippered by Captain Marko Kralj, came from Hong Kong; while the ill-fated ship under Captain Pedrito Serencio, was enroute to Dumaguete City from General Santos City.
Serencio said: “We heard no siren. There was zero visibility. I did not see any light. Some of my men panicked. Others were thrown overboard by the impact.”
The missing crew men were identified as chief engineer Juanito Minoy and apprentice engineer Edward Paler. They were on duty in the engine room at the time of the incident. (With a report from Serafin Ramos)