Offshore InjuryBlog

Cargo Ship Golden Ray Tips Over Off Georgia Coast, 4 Crew Members Currently Trapped

A cargo ship tipped over off the coast of Georgia early Sunday morning, nearly capsizing. Crew members called for help at approximately 2 a.m. and responders arrived to find the large motor vehicle transporter Golden Rayon its side. The ship tipped over after listing heavily. It was departing from the Port of Brunswick after being loaded and unloaded by longshoremen.

The vessel had 23 crew members and a pilot on board. Rescuers used helicopters to rescue 20 of the crew members but were unable to locate the remaining four crew members until Monday morning. Rescuers are currently attempting to reach the remaining crew members.

About the Overturned Cargo Ship Incident

The Golden Ray is a 656-foot cargo shipped owned by South Korean logistics company Hyundai Glovis. It sails under the flag of the Marshall Islands. South Korea’s Foreign Ministry says that the ship was leaning about 80 degrees to its port side before it overturned. Heavy listing frequently happens when a ship is overloaded or improperly loaded. Officials from the National Transportation Safety Board are currently investigating the cause of the accident.

Crew members were hoisted into helicopters or lowered onto other vessels using fire hose. Rescuers had to wait for the ship to stabilize before attempting rescue efforts. According to Capt. John Reed of the U.S. Coast Guard, rescuers had to stop searching for the last four missing workers because of fires which started on the Golden Ray.

"As smoke and flames began to appear our crews, along with the Glynn County heavy rescue team, assessed that the situation was too risky to further go inside the vessel to attempt to locate the four individuals who remain missing at this time," Reed said.

The Coast Guard confirmed that a salvage team contacted the trapped crew members on Monday morning. It also confirmed that all four missing crew members were alive. However, rescuers are unable to confirm their conditions. The salvage team heard tapping sounds from the vessel’s propeller shaft. Rescuers arrived shortly after to drill a hole and communicate with the crew members. They are currently attempting to deliver food, water, and air to the trapped individuals.

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