In Turkey, a Rumanian oil tanker blew up and burned fiercely outside Istanbul harbour on Thursday (15 November).
In Turkey, a Rumanian oil tanker blew up and burned fiercely outside Istanbul harbour on Thursday (15 November). Rescue ships searched the sea around the blazing ship for 47 missing crew members.
SYNOPSIS: The tanker exploded after colliding with a Greek freighter. All 33 crew members of the Greek ship were rescued, but only three of the tanker's crew managed to swim ashore. Four bodies were soon recovered.
A cargo of 95,000 tonnes of oil was on board the Rumanian tanker when the collision occurred. According to the governor of Istanbul, the fire on the tanker was brought under control but it wold take several days to put it out. In London, the Lloyds Shipping Agency said the ship had broken in two. Istanbul Radio reported that the blaze on the Greek freighter had been extinguished. When dawn broke ambulances were brought in to await survivors, as a pall of smoke continued to rise from the stricken tanker.
On the coast, local officials were asked to watch out for oil slicks and local residents were warned against eating polluted sea food. The force of the explosion broke windows up to six kilometres away and shook much of istanbul. But winds kept blazing oil slicks away from the city.