New Delhi: The Indian Navy on Tuesday (May 18) said that it had rescued 177 people that were on a barge that went astray during the rough sea conditions due to Cyclone Tauktae. 273 people were on the barge and Navy ships were deployed on Monday after request from the Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC).
The barge was in the oilfields that are 70 kilometres offshore from Mumbai. Out of the 177, people 60 were rescued till 11 pm on Monday while the rest were rescued overnight.
The barge named ‘P305’ has no engine to power it which was the reason it went astray.
A barge is a long flat-bottomed boat either under its power or towed by another. An accommodation barge is of shallow draft (vessel whose keel is not far below the waterline) and is used to accommodate personnel on projects where shore accommodation is not available.
On Tuesday, the Navy also deployed P-8I long-range, multi-mission maritime patrol aircraft to assist in the search operations.
Another barge named ‘Gal Constructor’ with 137 persons has also drifted 48 nautical miles from the Colaba point.
An Emergency Towing Vessel ‘Water Lily’, two support vessels and CGS Samrat have already reached to conduct the search and rescue operations.
“INS Talwar has proceeded to assist another oil rig Sagar Bhushan with 101 personnel on board and an accommodation barge SS-3 with 196 personnel on board, both of which are adrift and presently located about 50 NM South East of Pipavav Port,” a navy spokesperson said in a statement.
With inputs from PTI