ZAMBOANGA CITY - A passenger-cargo vessel plying the Zamboanga-Sandakan route and vice versa capsized Thursday hours after it docked at the “T area” of the local wharf.
Arthur Nogas, Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) harbourmaster, said the M/V Danica Joy 2 of the Aleson Shipping Lines, Inc. listed and capsized around 9:30 p.m. while moored at the local port.
Nogas said the vessel arrived at 4 p.m. coming from Malaysia via the city of Sandakan, Sabah. It plies weekly the Zamboanga-Sandakan route.
He said M/V Danica Joy 2, which is a Roll-on Roll-off (Roro) 900 passenger-seater vessel, was carrying 799 passengers when it arrived in the city.
He said the passengers included 12 foreigners -- 11 Malaysians and one Australian -- and 603 deportees. It is skippered by Diogenes Saavedra.
There was no casualty since all of the passengers have already disembarked when it capsized. All the crew were accounted.
Khymer Olaso, supervisor of M/V Danica Joy 2, said initial investigation showed the boat listed to its starboard side (right side) and capsized “due to improper unloading of cargos.”
Olaso said the boat listed due to weight imbalance since the port side (left side) was emptied ahead of the starboard side.
He added that there was even a commotion between the stevedores as all of them wanted to unload cargoes ahead of the others.
Nogas said the vessel was loaded with assorted goods such as food items including vegetable oil and other dry goods when it docked at the local port.
He said they have yet to determine the worth of damaged cargoes.
Aleson Shipping Lines, Inc., is a Zamboanga-based company founded on October 1, 1976.
At present, the company operates a fleet of 25 vessels and has become the dominant shipping operator in Western Mindanao.