Seven crew members rescued from freighter en route to repairs in Italy
The seven sailors were rescued from an Italian freighter which began to take on water off Greece as it headed for repairs.
The seven Bulgarian crew members were brought ashore by a Hellenic Coastguard helicopter from the 2,900 dwt Quaterdecies (built in 1989) 90 nautical miles off Pylos on Thursday.
The Panamanian-flagged vessel had issued a distress call in the early hours of the morning as it had suffered water ingress for reasons still unknown, the coast guard said.
The ship was carrying a cargo of cement and had left Nemrut in Turkey on July 4 bound for Reggio in Italy.
Two merchant ships were diverted to the area, including a container ship and a Grimaldi ferry, after rescue authorities in Piraeus were alerted, Maritime.bg reported.
An evacuation of the ship was ordered and the seven sailors transferred to a lifeboat launched by the ship Grimaldi, before being airlifted to Kalamata.
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No injuries were reported. The crew is now housed in a hotel and is said to be in good health.
The ship was heading to Italy for repairs at the time.
The last AIS update of July 7 showed that the Quaterdecies were not under command.
The Easy Shipping manager of Italy was in talks with a Greek salvage company to tow the ship to port.
A tug has now joined the vessel, which is listing slightly.
The vessel, the former Seven Dream, failed three port state control inspections in 2020 and 2021.
This happened before Easy Shipping took over in October.
In 2021 alone, the ship underwent two more detailed checks in Italy.
The second of them in Augusta resulted in a 37-day stay with 34 deficiencies.
Inspectors found unsafe plot ladders and holed and corroded decks.
Other faults included an inoperative radio and other lifesaving equipment, a blocked means of escape, and damaged accommodations and furniture.
There were also insufficient and rotting provisions, and inoperative sanitary facilities.