Tide, broken pumps bar ship recovery
The strong tide and malfunctioning ballast pumps kept a salvor company from moving the stranded Panamanian vessel MV Belle Rose away from Monad Shoal at Malapascua Island in Daanbantayan town, northern Cebu yesterday.
Noel Kimmayong, marine superintendent of the Malayan Towage and Salvaging Corp., claimed that the vessel slightly moved an inch backward. They will continue to move the vessel out of the area today.
But Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction Management Office (PDRRMO) Chief Baltazar Tribunalo, who went for a dive at the area at 11 a.m., said there was no movement of the ship.
Tribunalo, who held a press conference at a banca, said the vessel’s front section was still sitting on the massive corals.
“If it really moved then there will be traces of broken corals but it’s none,” Tribunalo said.
The salvage operation started at 9 a.m. yesterday with two tugboats at the stern (aft-most) and one at the bow (foremost) to maintain balance.
Kimmayong claimed that the tide made it difficult for the two tugboats to move the vessel backwards.
The salvage operation was stopped at 10:35 a.m. yesterday to allow the vessel to discharge water from the ballast tanks.
But portable pumps were used to replace the ballast pump that malfunctioned.
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