‘T-boned’ ships separated; no danger of sinking


Two large cargo ships locked in a T-bone shape for days were separated Sunday, with no danger that they will sink, the Japan Coast Guard said.

The Greece-registered freighter Alpha Action rammed into the Singapore-flagged containership Wan Hai 307’s port quarter early Friday off the Izu Peninsula. The ships, still stuck together, started drifting eastward.

Japanese salvage ships completed work to separate them at around 5 p.m. Sunday some 90 km east-northeast of Cape Nojima on the Boso Peninsula in Chiba Prefecture, the coast guard said.

No more oil has leaked from the 25,836-ton Wan Hai since an initial spill that occurred when it was struck by the 77,221-ton Alpha Action about 7.5 km off Toshima Island in the Izu chain.

With its engine compartment flooded, the disabled Wan Hai was being towed by a Japanese boat, the coast guard said.

The Alpha Action was undergoing inspection.

The Japanese port where the two ships will receive repairs hadn’t been decided yet. The coast guard plans to question both captains over the collision.