Earlier in the day, Wednesday, 29 August 2018, reports emerged stating that a Norwegian ship manned by an all Indian crew received the assistance of The Indian Navy, to salvage its port anchor and cable chain that had slipped into the Arabian Sea in the piracy-infested waters of the Gulf of Aden.
Nearly three days ago, the INS Teg, a warship of Western Naval Command was despatched to the spot to help retrieve M.V. Vela’s port anchor weighing a staggering 42 tonnes and its 330 meters long cable chain that had slipped into the sea after receiving a distress call from the Combined Task Force aircraft requesting assistance
Due to the slip, the ship, M.V. Vela was severely disabled restricting its speed to five-six knots, leaving it vulnerable to attacks by pirates in that region.
The ship also posed a serious navigational hazard to itself and other vessels in the dense commercial shipping corridor.
On receiving the distress call, the INS Teg quickly mobilized a team of specialists who assessed the situation in a quick session and launched a massive operation to recover the cable chain and hanging anchor of the M.V. Vela, that is owned by Seven Sea SA, Norway and Fleet Management Ltd. Hong Kong.
It took the team comprising of Anchor Chain Cable Specialist and Machinery Specialist, among other which was led by the vessel’s Engineering Officer, Seamanship instructor more than three days to safely recover the hanging port anchor and the entire cable.
Once this incident was over, M.V. Vela continued its onward voyage, reportedly through the constricted waters of the Red Sea and Suez Canal, while managing to avert huge financial losses.
Indian Navy’s help and contribution towards the operation was gratefully appreciated by the Norwegian owners, as they went on to term the experience as “compliant to the best maritime traditions, one worthy of being emulated by other mariners”.
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