January 14, 2019 / 8:51 AM / 3 days ago

Cable ship capsizes near Singapore after tanker collision

JAKARTA (Reuters) - An undersea cable and pipe-laying ship, the Vanuatu-flagged MV Star Centurion, capsized in the Indonesian waters of the Singapore Straits after a collision with a tanker on Sunday, with no fatalities, authorities said on Monday.

The Singapore Straits are one of the world’s busiest shipping zones with hundreds of container ships, oil and fuel tankers and dry bulk carriers daily traversing the waters that connect east Asia to Europe, India and Africa.

The collision happened just north of Bintan, an Indonesian island in the Riau Islands province that sits opposite the city-state of Singapore.

“It’s already capsized,” Samsul Nizar, the head of operations at the Indonesian coast guard base at Tanjung Uban on Bintan, told Reuters by telephone, “but it hasn’t sunk completely.”

Coast guard vessels were monitoring the ship, Nizar said, and all crew were in a safe condition and had been rescued by Singaporean authorities.

Refinitiv Eikon shipping data showed the Centurion, a 13,000 deadweight tonne ship specialising in laying cables and pipes on the ocean floor, was anchored in the Horsburgh OPL zone, an area in which ships take on marine fuel, on the eastern edge of the Singapore Straits. Meanwhile, the Antea, a 40,000-deadweight-tonne oil product tanker, was steaming past it.

The Antea’s registered owner is Pertamina. A spokesman for the company could not immediately be reached for comment on the matter.

It was not immediately clear who owns the Star Centurion, which also goes by the name of Lewek Centurian.

(MAP: Ship collision Singapore Straits - tmsnrt.rs/2AGJ6Q8)

Reporting by Fergus Jensen in Jakarta; additional reporting by Henning Gloystein in SINGAPORE; editing by Christian Schmollinger

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