Posted on January 03, 2020 by Ilias Kiritsis

Two crewmembers belonging to the Maltese-flagged Cargo Ship, STARA PLANINA fell overboard during the morning hours of January the 2nd while the ship was transiting through the Norwegian Sea.

The incident occurred at approximately 11:30 am some 210 miles southwest of Bodo, and 180 nautical miles west of Sandnessjoen, Norway.

According to initial reports, the incident occurred when a 9-meter-high wave pushed the two sailors overboard. Reportedly, the ship had been caught in extremely severe adverse weather conditions and was experiencing strong winds and high waves.

Upon receiving news of the incident, the Norway Joint Rescue Coordination Centre sent out a number of helicopters in order to try and locate the two Bulgarian nationals.

The helicopters continued the search & rescue operation throughout the day, but their efforts were severely hampered due to the adverse weather conditions present in the area, namely, high-winds and 8 meter-high waves.

Regrettably, the Bulgarian Foreign Ministry has chosen to suspend the operation, citing that there is no hope of survival for the unfortunate seafarers.

"According to the Norwegian Joint Rescue Coordination Center, under the current climatic conditions there is no chance for those who have fallen into the water to survive for such a long time," reads the statement from the ministry.

The Norwegian police have launched an investigation into the incident.

Image Courtesy of Marine Traffic

Posted in Safety , Search & Rescue , Missing , Bulgaria , Europe , Norway

If you enjoyed this article sign up to our free weekly newsletter here