An abandoned ‘ghost ship’ has sunk off the coast of Thailand after being found floating at sea with no crew on board.
The mysterious vessel was spotted by oil rig workers in the Gulf of Thailand on January 6 and had been stripped of all identifying documents.
The 262ft tanker was named ‘Jin Shui Yuan 2’ in Chinese characters but is of unknown origins.
It was spotted about a hundred nautical miles from the mouth of Songkhla Lak.
However, the ship sank due to rough seas and strong winds on Sunday while the Thai navy was attempting to tow it to shore.
Authorities are now working to stop a one kilometre-wide oil leak that is emanating from the wreck from harming the environment and spreading to nearby holiday islands.
Buoys were also placed to mark the area where the ship had sunk and fishermen have been alerted to be careful while sailing.
A notice has been issued to the shipowner to come forward and salvage the vessel within 15 days.
Captain Itthipat Gavinfuengfukul said: ‘We have been trying to bring the ship to shore, but it sank before we could reach it.
‘Buoys have been deployed at the point where it sank. The ship is 18 metres from the water’s surface and about 28 nautical miles from the coast of Sichon district.’
He added that the shipowner would have to pay to claim the tanker.
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