Indonesian authorities rescued 18 sailors after their general cargo ship sank on Saturday.
Antara news agency quoted police as saying the 1,400 dwt Permata Asia (built in 1992) had developed a leak in its engine room north of Sangiang Island in West Nusa Tenggara .
The ship was carrying a cargo of cement.
Local police chief Henry Novika Chandra issued a statement on Sunday saying the source of the water seepage had been repaired “several times”.
“But because he could no longer be helped, the ship’s captain asked for help by sending an SOS signal,” he added.
A quick response came from the navy and police forces and all crew members were safely evacuated to the port of Sape.
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Chandra added: “It is true that the ship sank and all the crew were safe and sound.”
The ship was crossing the Flores Sea at that time.
The captain changed course in the Sangiang Sea, but the engine died.
Chandra explained that the sailors tried to pump the water out manually.
“However, the officers could not overcome the water drain that had seeped into the engine room. The ship’s engine shut down on its own, the ship began to sink,” he said. -he adds.
The vessel is listed as operated by Sinar Era Asia of Indonesia.
Permata Asia has only one port state control inspection to its credit, dating back to 2007.
The freighter was not detained at that time.