Photo: Courtesy of Indonesian Ministry of Transport, Directorate General for Sea Transport

Boxship, bulker aground in Singapore Strait

An Iranian-registered container ship Shahraz and Indonesian-registered bulk carrier Samudra Sakti I ran aground at Batu Berhanti within Indonesian territorial waters on Monday, May 11.

The ships ran aground in close proximity, which could indicate that the vessels were either trying to avoid a potential collision with each other or a third vessel. The cause of the grounding is yet to be officially determined.

The Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) said that prior to the incident both vessels were warned by MPA’s Port Operations Control Centre (POCC) of the risk of grounding.

“There have been no reports of injury or pollution,” a Spokesperson of the MPA Singapore told Offshore Energy.

“The vessel owners are making arrangements to survey the vessels, and are in consultation with the Indonesian authorities to refloat the vessels.”

As informed, the shipping traffic in the Singapore Strait Traffic Separation Scheme (TSS) is not affected as both vessels are aground south of the TSS.

As a precautionary measure, MPA’s POCC has issued a safety broadcast for vessels in the vicinity to navigate with caution.

According to an update from the Indonesian Directorate General of Sea Transportation, a division of the country’s Ministry of Transportation, the containership has suffered considerable damage to its hull structure on the port side.

The 2008-built 6, 572 TEU boxship, owned by the Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines, remains aground. It is loaded with containers and would probably need to be lightered before attempts of refloating it could be launched.

According to unconfirmed reports, the containership is a total loss.

The bulker had no visible traces of damages, according to the directorate, which has inspected both ships. The bulker has since been refloated and anchored in Batam waters.

“We continue to work to coordinate efforts to salvage, float, and prevent pollution, as well as supervise the condition of the ship,” said Captain Herbert Marpaung on behalf of the Directorate General of Sea Transportation in Indonesia. 

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