Captain and helmsman arrested for abandoning ship that went adrift
The captain and first mate of the cargo ship Julietta D, which went adrift on Monday, were arrested as part of an investigation into their possible premature abandonment of the ship. A spokesperson for the National Unit of the Dutch police force announced this after it was reported by regional broadcaster NH Nieuws.
Julietta D’s anchor could no longer hold due to the stormy weather, after which the ship collided with a tanker ship in an anchorage area near IJmuiden. After the collision, the Julietta D took on water, and eighteen crew members had to be taken off-board. A captain and first mate are required to remain on a ship unless strictly necessary, for example, if their lives are in danger. The maritime police are now investigating whether or not they rightly left the ship.
The two crew members, both Russian, were detained on Tuesday and are being interrogated, according to the spokesman of the National Unit. The case will then be handed over to the department of the Public Prosecution Service which handles safety-related incidents on the North Sea.
The Julietta D, which was flying under the Maltese flag, had crew members from Ukraine and the Philippines on board, as well as Russians.
A mission to tow the ship to the port of Rotterdam was completed on Tuesday afternoon, once the weather settled and the seas calmed down after Monday's storm. A large Boskalis sea sledge laid the first tow connection to the Julietta D around 6:30 p.m. on Monday. It was intended to prevent the ship from drifting towards Monster, a coastal town in Zuid-Holland. On Tuesday morning, a helicopter was used to get three people on the ship to help make the second connection so the ship could be towed.
Reporting by ANP