Salamis Cruise Ship Glory Collision Freighter Shelly Haifa Bay Israel – On August 31, 2007, (0100 Israel Time) a Greek cruise ship sliced open a small freighter in Haifa Bay, resulting in the sinking of the freighter. Four crew members on the freighter died and were recovered from the water.
An Israeli freighter, MV Shelly and Greek cruise line Salamis Cruise Lines passenger ship ‘Salamis Glory’ collided in Haifa bay with the cruise ship cutting the small freighter in half. The incident occurred close to 10:00 P.M., when the passenger ship Salamis Glory exited Haifa Port. Several minutes later, it struck a cargo vessel anchored about 2.5 kilometers offshore. Soon after, the cargo ship began listing and sank.
Reportedly, 11 crew members escaped, and most climbed aboard a rescue launch lowered by Salamis Glory and were subsequently rescued by the Israeli Navy. The rest, all but two were rescued by helicopter. The remaining two crew members were declared missing, prompting a search and rescue operation involving six naval vessels, multiple aircraft and divers. About 12 hours after the sinking the bodies of two crew were recovered from the wreck by divers in 20 metres (66 ft) of water.
The Shelly ( ex Dora, ex Loti ) was flying the Slovakian flag and is operated by Caspi Cargo Lines of Haifa, Israel. She was built in 1973 and had a speed of 10 knots and a gross tonnage of 1599 tons. She was carrying a cargo of gypsum.6895. MV Shelly cargo ship that was built in Bulgaria in 1973.
Head of Haifa’s naval police unit commander Felix Cohen said, “We saw the passenger ship standing still and at a distance of 50 meters we saw the freighters mast that sunk immediately. The air was full of the smell and the sailors that were in the water refused to evacuate without their missing comrades.”
Cohen added that it was a very sad and difficult incident. “We will keep searching for the missing with the help of the navy and the port workers until we find them.”
The crewmembers of the freighter, owned by Caspi Shipping, are all of Indonesian and Slovakian nationality.
One of the ship’s officers, Mandeta Ayur of Indonesia, told Ynet that the collision occurred around 10:00 pm while he was sleeping.
“I suddenly heard screaming, I went up to the deck and saw the other ship right in front of us, a moment before the collision. We all put on life vests and jumped into the water. We were there for almost 20 minutes before we were rescued. We are still waiting to hear what happened with two of our friends.”
None of the cruise ship’s crew or 700 passengers were injured in the collision.
The Israel Navy took charge of the collision scene, sending ships, launching a helicopter and calling in the divers’ unit, to assist in the search and rescue operation.
Haifa bay administration officials say the collision was caused by faulty piloting on the Greek ship’s part.
Initial reports say the Cypriot-flagged passenger ship lost its steering
Haifa is a seaport located on Israel’s Mediterranean coastline in the Haifa Bay, about 90 km north of Tel Aviv.