5 Days Since US Bridge Collapse, Why Indian Crew Is On Ship That Crashed

The cargo ship Dali is entangled with debris of the collapsed bridge in Baltimore

New Delhi:

The 20 Indian crew members of the ship that rammed a bridge in the US city of Baltimore are still on the vessel, answering officials and ensuring the ship’s daily routine work is done, the New York Times reported.

The crew members won’t be going anytime soon, until the mangled remains of the bridge have been cleared, NYT reported. They will in the meantime look after the ship.

The ship named Dali was going to Sri Lanka, carrying 4,700 containers, when it struck the Francis Scott Key Bridge after losing power.

The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) had said one of the Indian crew members was taken to a Baltimore hospital where he received stitches. He has returned to the ship, the MEA has said.

It may take weeks to remove the debris, free the ship, and reopen the channel to one of the busiest ports in the US. On Saturday, the Governor of Maryland said officials planned to remove the first piece of the debris.

Chris James, the employee of a consulting firm that’s helping the ship’s management company, Synergy Marine, told NYT the crew members have ample supplies of food and water, enough fuel to keep the generators working.

But there is still no exact timeline for when the ship might be extracted from the wreckage, Mr James told NYT. Once the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) and the Coast Guard finish their investigations, the crew may be swapped to be sent home, Mr James said in the NYT report.

The crew has received praise for sending SOS messages to the local authorities which allowed them to stop much of the traffic before the accident. Six people who were part of a construction crew repairing potholes on the bridge were killed when the structure collapsed.

“Our information is that there are 21 crew members, of which 20 are Indians. All of them are in good shape, good health. One of them got injured slightly, needed to have some stitches, and stitches have been given. And, he has gone back to the ship,” MEA spokesperson Randhir Jaiswal had said in response to a query during his weekly media briefing in Delhi.


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