Malaysian SAR Rescues Crew After Cargo Ship’s Hull Cracks

cargo ship sinking
Cargo ship was taking on water after its hull cracked near the ballast tank (MMEA)

Published Jul 8, 2024 3:50 PM by The Maritime Executive


[Brief]  The Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency reported the rescue of 10 crewmembers working on an older coastal general cargo ship. The vessel reported to the authorities early this morning that it had developed a crack in its hull with MMEA describing the flooding as “quite bad.”

The vessel named Kum Jin was built in 1988 and was recently operating in a local trade in Malaysian waters. The ship, which was registered in Mongolia and managed from Malaysia was 2,200 dwt and 229 feet (70 meters) in length.

The MMEA received a distress message at 0335 this morning July 8. According to the information received the ship’s hull cracked forward on the port side in the area of the ballast tank. Severe flooding resulted. The vessel had departed Port Klang on Sunday night with a shipment of steel and asked to return to the anchorage when the troubles began.

By the time the MMEA’s rescue boat reached the vessel which was west of Tanjung Rhu, south of Kuala Lumpur on the west side of Malaysia and in the Malacca Strait, the captain and nine crewmembers were making their way to the lifeboat.

MMEA reports the vessel was determined to be in an unsafe condition. Despite bad weather, they were able to transfer the 10 crewmembers to the patrol boat which brought them to shore. The captain was from Indonesia and the crew was from Indonesia and Myanmar. 

Initial reports that the vessel had sunk were later updated by the Port Klang Authority. Later on Monday after weather conditions improved, a team of shore engineers and the ship's crew reboarded the vessel to stabilize it and start repairs. The port authority reports it is monitoring the situation and that so far there has been no pollution.