In a swift sea – air coordinated operation on 22 Nov 20, ICG ship connected tow to tanker MT Anasthasia-1 drifting dangerously towards Kachall island and commenced towing to safe waters. The vessel enroute to Dubai with 24 crew onboard experienced total power failure since 19 Nov 20 and threatened the bio-sensitive ecology of pristine Nicobar islands as the tanker had approximately 910 MT of bunker fuel.
On receipt of information by MRCC Port Blair, NAVAREA warning was issued and International safety Net was activated for alerting merchant mariners and ICG boat from Campbell Bay was rushed for assessment of situation. ICG Multi Mission Vessel Vishwast on routine surveillance off Nicobar islands was also diverted. ICG boarding team embarked the vessel and repaired the Fleet Broadband Communication equipment, made the Automatic Identification System operational and prepared the anchor chain cables of the vessel for manual lowering.
Despite dedicated liaison of ICG with owners based at Kochi, the owners failed to provide tug for assistance. The vessel was drifting dangerously towards Katchall island with the risk of running aground and posing dangers of oil spillage off Nicobar islands. Considering the grave situation, ICG ship swiftly connected tow and commenced towing the 243mtr long vessel to safe waters. The timely and effective response by ICG ship obviated the impending threat to the delicate flora and fauna of these islands.