5 Filipinos survive sea mishap in North Sea –-DFA

December 7, 2012 11:18 pm 

By Michaela del Callar

MANILA, Dec. 7 -– Five Filipinos survived the sinking of Bahamian-flagged car carrier MV Baltic Ace off Dutch waters in the North Sea Wednesday after colliding with Cyprus-registered container ship Corvus J.

The identities of death toll, survivors and presumed dead crew members haven't been released yet.

But the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) on Friday said the collision on Dec. 5 killed two Filipino sailors.

Rescue workers are still locating three other Filipino seamen who have been missing since the collision, DFA said.

However, Dutch rescuers indicated that those missing were unlikely to be found due to freezing water temperature.

Those Filipinos who survived, Foreign Affairs spokesman Raul Hernandez said, were already bound for Rotterdam in Netherlands.

MV Baltic Ace was en route to Finland from Brussels when the collission happened.

“Both our embassies in Brussels and The Hague are in touch with authorities there to ensure adequate assistance are extended to them,” Hernandez said.

The embassy in Netherlands, he said, was coordinating with the Filipinos’ shipping agent and the owners of the MV Baltic Ace “to make sure that the needs of the seafarers are taken cared of as well as their travel documents” should they wish to be repatriated to the Philippines.

Hernandez said he was also hoping that the missing Filipinos could still be found.

The global shipping industry, which carries 80 percent of international trade, employs about 1.2 million seafarers, the bulk of whom come from the Philippines. (PNA)



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