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Body of crewmember recovered from sunken ship

November 09, 2012, 15:50 UTC+3

No documents were found with him, and the man is not identified yet

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VLADIVOSTOK, November 9 (Itar-Tass) — The body of the crewmember found in the sunken Amurskaya freighter was taken to the Rubin rescue vessel on Friday. No documents were found with him, and the man is not identified yet.

The Emergencies Ministry’s Far Eastern regional search and rescue centre, divers from which are working at the shipwreck site in the Sea of Okhotsk, said that a rubber boat was found on the sunken freighter and an aluminum boat was near the vessel on the seabed.

The divers went down to the sunken ship for seven times, examined the captain's room, the dining room and the pilothouse. No other bodies were found inside the vessel.

The search operation is complicated by various things moving in the water inside the freighter. The divers did not find any space filled with air in the examined sections.

If the weather is favorable, EMERCOM divers will resume the examination of the inner sections of the sunken ship early on Saturday morning.

The dead body of a crewmember was found earlier on Friday.

A Be-200 plane and a Mi-8 helicopter participated in the search operation and examined the area from the air.

Nine crewmembers were aboard the freighter. The fate of the other people is unknown so far.

On October 28, the freighter Amurskaya with nine crewmembers aboard left the port of Kiran, the Khabarovsk Region, for the port of Okhotsk. According to the investigators' information, the ship had 700-750 tonnes of gold-containing ore aboard, though its load weight must not exceed 611 tonnes. Experts suppose the load could move in the storm, and supposedly because of this, the vessel capsized and sank.

Contact with the vessel was lost, and aircraft and ships examined more than 20,000 square kilometres near the Shantar Islands in the Sea of Okhotsk, and search groups examined more than 160 kilometres of the coast line of the Khabarovsk Territory in search of the missing ship. An empty life raft was found on Feklistov Island of the Shantar Archipelago. It is not established yet whether the raft is from the Amurskaya.

The freighter was found lying on the bottom of the Sea of Okhotsk at a depth of 25 metres near the Shantar Islands. Eight divers, including a doctor, worked at the site on Friday.

On Friday morning, the wind was 5-7 metres a second, it was cloudy, waves were one metre high, the temperature was near zero, and visibility was within eight miles in the area. The divers and an investigator were carried by a Mi-8 helicopter from Khabarovsk to the Rubin rescue vessel on Thursday. Another helicopter delivered a tonne of equipment for their work. Last Wednesday, three divers from the Rubin crew examined the sunken freighter, but did not get inside the vessel.


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