Video: Chemical Tanker Collides With Freighter Off Japan

Trackline of the Ryushin Maru (red) and Xin Hai 99 (green) before and after collision

Published Aug 21, 2022 4:02 PM by The Maritime Executive

In the early hours of Saturday morning, a chemical tanker collided with a small freighter just off the coast of Kushimoto, a small port on the south coast of Honshu, Japan. 

At about 0200 hours on Saturday, the Japanese-owned chemical tanker Ryoshin Maru (IMO 9893785) collided with the Belize-flagged freighter Xin Hai 99 (IMO 8679364) at a position about two nautical miles off Kushimoto. No one was injured, but the Xin Hai was damaged in the collision and spilled some amount of fuel oil into the water. 

Photos taken by local media outlets show the Xin Hai trimmed heavily by the stern and listing slightly to starboard, but thanks to response efforts, she retained enough stability to stay afloat. The tanker's bow sustained comparatively minor damage, including tears in the hull plating above the waterline. 

Pollution control efforts are under way, and the Japan Coast Guard is investigating the circumstances of the collision. 

According to the Kushimoto Coast Guard, the tanker's bow collided with the starboard side of the freighter just forward of the pilothouse. AIS data provided by Pole Star shows that in the minutes leading up to the incident, the two vessels were aligned for a starboard-to-starboard passing arrangement.

The tanker was in ballast condition, headed eastbound for Kashima, and the bulker was laden with a cargo of steel and headed westbound. The Associated Press reports that the Xin Hai 99's crew has accused the Ryoshin Maru of turning suddenly towards their vessel.