Eemslift Hendrika, the Dutch yacht transporter that was abandoned in a heavy storm on Monday after deck cargo shifted and the vessel lost power, was taken in tow last night and is proceeding to Ålesund the Norwegian Coastal Administration has advised.
“Conditions changed during the afternoon and evening, and we were worried that the vessel would not follow the expected course on which the original plan was based. We therefore launched a governmental run operation so that we had the opportunity to tow the vessel. At the same time, we prepared for a worst-case scenario where we could get a grounding”, said Director for Preparedness against acute pollution, Hans-Petter Mortensholm.
During the evening, there was a successful operation to put crew from the Dutch salvage company Smit Salvage, plus a rescuer from the helicopter on board the Eemslift Hendrika. They managed to connect the vessel to two tugboats – both at the bow and stern of the ship.
The risk of grounding has been avoided, and the ship will be towed to Ålesund via Breisundet. The Norwegian Coastal Administration maintains emergency preparedness until the ship is safely ashore. The Coast Guard ship KV Bergen is involved as a security vessel. The NCA has additional vessel resources in readiness in the area.
Earlier in the day heavy seas and high winds prevented anything other than observation of the stricken vessel. The workboat on deck was noted to have fallen off on Tuesday.