More bodies found in Qatar ship tragedy

Rescuers have found five more bodies from the Duba-based supply ship which sank off Doha coast.
By Elsa Baxter
Thu 02 Jul 2009 07:44 AM

Rescuers recovered five more bodies from a Dubai-based supply ship which sank off the Qatari coast, bringing the number of dead to six.

Five people, including the captain, were rescued after the vessel with 35 people on board sunk near the Doha Channel, about 10 nautical miles off the coast on Tuesday.

According to The Peninsula, the ship was carrying 9 crew and 24 employees of HBK Power Cleaning and two caterers working for a company hired by HBK

HBK said among its staff on board the ship were 12 Nepalese, 11 Indians and one Bangladeshi. The caterers were Indian, the company said, according to agencies.

A massive search operation is still underway and authorities have launched an investigation into the cause of the incident.

The ship, MV Demas Victory, which provides support to offshore oil and gas platforms, sank as it tried to re-enter Doha Port amid rough conditions, at about 6.30am.

George Mathew, general manager of the ship’s operator told agencies the ship was hit by a huge swell and strong winds and capsized. He said it sank in three minutes.

The crew who were rescued were either on the deck or in the wheelhouse at the time. The others are feared dead because they would have been unable to escape from their sleeping cabins, Mathew said.

The vessel is operated by Midgulf Offshore Ship Chartering LLC on behalf of owner Demas Marine Inc. It was built in 1979 and has been operated by Midgulf since January 2005.

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