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Photos: Panamanian-Flagged Vessel Splits in Two Off Northern Japan After Running Aground

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Local authorities have stated that the shipping mishap prompted no fatalities or injuries, and that no other cargo vessel was involved in the incident. Officials are focusing their efforts on containing the oil spill, which has been labeled minor.

A cargo ship transiting the northern waters off the coast of Japan shockingly split in two just moments after running aground, it was revealed by officials with the Japan Coast Guard on Thursday.

Citing a spokesperson for the agency, Reuters reported that the Panamanian-flagged cargo ship ran into troubles toward the end of its travels from Thailand as it entered the Hachinohe harbor in northern Japan and ran aground.

© REUTERS / HANDOUT

A view of the Panamanian-registered ship ‘Crimson Polaris’ after it ran aground in Hachinohe harbour in Hachinohe, northern Japan, August 12, 2021, in this handout photo taken and released by 2nd Regional Coast Guard Headquarters.

Although the 39,910-tonne cargo ship named “Crimson Polaris” did manage to free itself, it eventually split in two and began leaking oil after being forced to anchor nearby as a result of poor weather.

Aerial photos shared by the local authorities show the vessel’s stern tipped upwards as the other half of the carrier is seen listing to port. Coast Guard officials had noted that neither part of the vessel has shifted since the disaster unfolded.

AFP reported that all crew aboard the wood chips carrier were safely rescued from the scene, and that the incident resulted in no fatalities or injuries. In all, the crew was composed of 21 Chinese and Filipino sailors.

© REUTERS / 2nd Regional Coast Guard Headquarters – Japan Coast Guard/Handout

A view of the Panamanian-registered ship ‘Crimson Polaris’ after it ran aground in Hachinohe harbour in Hachinohe, northern Japan, August 12, 2021, in this handout photo taken and released by 2nd Regional Coast Guard Headquarters

Approximately three patrol boats and three aircraft were deployed to assess the situation, with authorities currently directing their efforts toward containing the oil leak that has grown to be about 5.1 kilometers long and about 1 kilometer wide.

The extent of the environmental impact from the oil leak remains unclear amid the ongoing investigation. 

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