A continuing search and rescue operation has reportedly saved 29 crew members from a UAE-registered Ro/Ro cargo ship that sank earlier today in bad weather, according to Iranian officials. According to conflicting claims, the search for one more crewmember is ongoing, or that the last person on the 6,000-dwt Al Salmy 6 died when it sank in the Persian Gulf.
Forecasters in the area had issued watches and warnings for a major storm that was predicted to bring high seas and strong winds to the region. The vessel rolled on its starboard side and began sinking, according to rescuers, in winds exceeding 40 miles per hour. It sank 30 miles off the coast of Assaluyeh, Iran.
Captain Nizar Qaddoura, operations manager of the Salem Al Makrani Cargo Company, reported that 11 crew members were able to board rafts, while two Iranian patrol boats rescued 16 people wearing lifejackets. A nearby tanker was thought to have rescued one of the crew members. Initially, they stated that two people were still missing, but according to the most recent Iranian news agency sources, 29 people had been rescued. The crew, according to the captain, was made up of people from Sudan, India, Uganda, Tanzania, and Ethiopia.
Officials claimed they had requested a helicopter to join the search in addition to the two Iranian patrol boats. However, a port official told reporters that they would be looking for the body of the crew member who had gone missing.
The ship, which was built in 1983, had set sail from Dubai with vehicles and other goods intended for the Iraqi port of Umm Qasr in the south.
— خالد اسكيف (@khalediskef) March 17, 2022