The distressed vessel was towed to the Simplicio Palanca Sea Terminal after it encountered mechanical trouble in the vicinity of Bacolod City waters on Thursday, December 7.
The distressed vessel was towed to the Simplicio Palanca Sea Terminal after it encountered mechanical trouble in the vicinity of Bacolod City waters on Thursday, December 7. Coast Guard photo

DISTRESS CALL | Another fastcraft encountered trouble, as 53 passengers rescued off Bacolod City waters

Another fastcraft was rescued Thursday, December 7, after it incurred trouble in the vicinity of Bacolod City waters.

Chief Petty Officer Louie Campaner, Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) Bredco sub-station commander, said 53 passengers and crew of M/V City of General Santos (Montenegro Shipping Lines) were all safe and sound after the rescue operation.

Campaner said the fastcraft was from Iloilo City bound for Bacolod City when it sent a distress signal at approximately 1.1 nautical miles from Bredco port at around 1:45 p.m.

He said the vessel suffered a breakdown of the starboard engine shaft, prompting the captain of the vessel to shut down the engine and call the PCG for assistance.

A tugboat was dispatched to assist the troubled vessel and towed it successfully to the Simplicio Palanca Sea Terminal.

No one was hurt from the incident, as Campaner noted that during the incident, five PCG personnel, who were also onboard and traveling to Bacolod City at the time, assisted the crew and assured the passengers' safety.

Campaner further said that the vessel is temporarily barred from leaving port until they have secured a certificate of seaworthiness from the Maritime Industry Authority.

On November 21, a fastcraft vessel, M/V Weesam Express 6, also suffered a breakdown of its rudder, causing the vessel to lose steering.

The vessel was also safely towed back to Bacolod City, although several passengers suffered minor sea sickness as the vessel spent some time floating in the Guimaras Strait.*

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