18 crew members abandon vessel in Leyte during ‘Dante’ onslaught

Published June 2, 2021, 4:02 PM

by Richa Noriega

Eighteen crew members of a cargo vessel were forced to abandon their ship as strong waves and heavy downpour triggered by tropical storm ”Dante” threatened their safety, the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) spokesperson said on Wednesday, June 2.

Eighteen crew members abandoned a cargo vessel in the shoreline of Albuera, Leyte during the onslaught of tropical storm “Dante,” on Wednesday, June 2, 2021. (Photo courtesy of the PCG)

And it was a right decision because according to PCG spokesperson Commodore Armand Balilo, the LCT Jacqueline Star was already half-submerged after the crew left the vessel on Wednesday afternoon.

Balilo said personnel of the PCG are set to put an oil spill boom to prevent leakage and spread of toxic chemicals on the seawater.

No crew members were injured during the incident, he added.

Meanwhile, the PCG spokesperson said that sea travels have not yet resumed as storm signal warnings are still carefully observed in some areas including the Bicol region.

“Hopefully later in the afternoon there will be resumption of trips,” Balilo added.

A total of 3,007 passengers were stranded in Eastern Visayas, Central Visayas, Southern Tagalog, Northeastern Mindanao, and Bicol regions due to tropical storm “Dante” as of 8 a.m. on Wednesday.

The Coast Guard said deployable response groups (DRGs) were deployed in the affected areas for possible evacuation and rescue operations in coordination with their respective local government units.