Cook found alive after Jascon 4 capsizing

Jascon+429 May 2013 – The cook onboard a Chevron-chartered offshore vessel which capsized off Nigeria on Sunday has been found alive.

The search continues, however, for 11 other crew members who were onboard the Jascon 4 anchor-handling tug when it capsized in heavy seas off Delta state on Sunday.

It had been feared that all 12 onboard the unit, which was assisting a tanker at the time of the sinking, had been lost.

However, a statement from Nigerian vessel owner West African Ventures, which lists the tug in its fleet, confirmed the unlikely rescue of one crew member.

“We are able to report that divers have found and identified one survivor, Mr Okene Harrison. He was the vessel’s cook and of Nigerian nationality.

“Mr Harrison was medically examined and he is currently in a stable condition and under treatment on board the diving support vessel.”

A spokesperson for WAV-related company Sea Trucks Group confirmed to Upstream that Harrison had been found on Tuesday evening inside the vessel which had capsized but not sank. The spokesperson was not willing to confirm or deny if any of the 11 remaining crew members had been sighted, however.

WAV continued: “The search and rescue operation will continue until all crew members are accounted for and we are in the meantime offering all support possible to the families of the missing crew members. We have also commenced a full investigation into the cause of the incident.”

A Chevron spokesman confirmed on Tuesday that a local unit of the US supermajor, Chevron Nigeria Limited, had hired the vessel.

“Initial reports indicated that heavy ocean swells caused the Jascon 4 to capsize while performing tension tow operations of the tanker at SBM 3,” the company added.

“Emergency Response has commenced, including search and rescue operation with surface vessels, helicopters and divers.”

The Jascon 4 is listed in the fleet of WAV. Shipping databases also link it with Walvis, also from Nigeria, as manager.

*Eoin O’Cinneide, Upstreamonline

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