Chilean Ferry Capsizes, 45 On Board
On Monday morning, Navimag’s Amadeo I ferry capsized while sailing near Paso Kirke, 50 kilometers southwest of Puerto Natales, with 17 passengers and 28 crew on board.
The passengers and ten crewmembers were evacuated via a motorboat. Meanwhile, 18 other crewmembers stayed aboard the ferry, waiting to be able to control the breakdown of water with the help from the Chilean Navy. However, they also eventually had to evacuate the ship, being transported to Puerto Natales.
There was an unsuccessful effort to prevent further flooding in the cargo/machinery space. For this reason, the captain of stricken vessel ordered the remaining crew to abandon ship, which finally resulted with half of the ship’s structure submerged.
On Monday night, the General Boat Service of Puerto Natales was sent to the site of the partial sinking in order to contain, if any, the presence of hydrocarbons. On Tuesday, another support ship along with support divers arrived to conduct an underwater inspection and oil containment procedures should there be traces of any fuel.
The Department of Maritime Search and Rescue (MRCC Punta Arenas) is overseeing this operation, with additional information provided by a naval helicopter performing a flyby of the area to observe from above the stricken vessel and render assistance to the crew.