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South Korea ferry disaster

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South Korea ferry disaster

Post by PeterMac on 16.04.14 15:15

It seems to be confirmed that the ferry has now sunk completely.

http://www.express.co.uk/news/world/470701/Hundreds-missing-after-ferry-sinks-in-South-Korea
Nearly 300 missing as ferry carrying school children sinks off South Korea

NEARLY 300 people are missing after a ferry carrying mostly school children sank off the coast of South Korea today.
Wed, April 16, 2014

Ferry was 95 per cent submerged within hours[ Getty/AP/EPA]
Four people are confirmed dead and 55 injured, but there are fears of a massive leap in the death toll as at least 290 passengers onboard the vessel remain unaccounted for.
According to official sources, the ferry which was carrying 459 passengers sank in cold waters off the country's southern coast as it made its way from the port of Incheon, in the north-west, to the southern resort island of Jeju.
The crew sent out a distress call at about 9am local time, after the ship was found to be leaning to one side, according to South Korea's Ministry of Security and Public Administration.
Dozens of boats, helicopters and divers were involved in the rescue operation which unfolded rapidly, but it is feared that many were trapped inside when it began to sink. Meanwhile the US Navy has sent a ship to join the search-and-rescue operation . The US Seventh Fleet said the amphibious assault ship USS Bonhomme Richard, which has helicopters on board, was on a routine patrol off South Korea's west coast and was on its way to the scene of the accident.

Local television stations broadcast live pictures of the ship, Sewol, listing to its side and slowly sinking as passengers jumped out or were winched up by helicopters. At least 87 vessels and 18 aircraft swarmed around the stricken ferry. Rescuers clambered over its sides, pulling out passengers wearing orange life jackets. But the ship overturned completely and continued to sink slowly. Within a few hours only its blue-and-white bow stuck out of the water - until that too disappeared.
They appear all to have been from the same school.
Truly ghastly

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Re: South Korea ferry disaster

Post by aiyoyo on 16.04.14 16:58

High school children so all of them teenagers.
Truly tragic !

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Re: South Korea ferry disaster

Post by Guest on 16.04.14 17:06

I'm avoiding like the plague to look at pictures ...
 sad 

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Re: South Korea ferry disaster

Post by jozi on 17.04.14 9:05

Very tragic, poor kids to loose their lives through no fault of their own...... R.I.P.

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Re: South Korea ferry disaster

Post by Guest on 17.04.14 16:50

The hole in the ship looks like an explosion/implosion.

Could it have been torpedoed?

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Re: South Korea ferry disaster

Post by PeterMac on 17.04.14 17:54

@Portia wrote:The hole in the ship looks like an explosion/implosion.
Could it have been torpedoed?
Which hole ?. We can only see the bow, and that is a bow thruster.
Please don't let the conspiracy theorists loose on this already !

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Re: South Korea ferry disaster

Post by Guest on 17.04.14 18:00

I just just read somewhere, that the captain took a short-cut route, as they were 3 hours behind schedule due to heavy fog, and then probably hit a submerged rock ... Passengers' instructions reportedly were to stay INSIDE, whilst the ferry was rapidly making water. Incompetence and unprepared for accidents comes to mind ... :-(

ETA I still don't want to look at any pictures. Reading about it is bad enough for me.

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Re: South Korea ferry disaster

Post by PeterMac on 18.04.14 10:09

It gets steadily worse.
The High School Vice Principal, who was rescued, is reported to have hanged himself.
Survivor Guilt ? Cultural norms ?
I don't know but it all so pointless.

And sadly some of the tabloids are now blithering on about the Captain not being "at the wheel".
For those who do not know, the Captain very rarely - IF EVER - takes the wheel. That is not his role.
There is usually no reason for him to be on the bridge.
The system is that he is the CEO
There are then officers of the watch,
and then there is a helmsman, engineers, bosun, and all the rest.
They are all under the immediate command of the Watch Officer, who probably will be on the bridge, but NOT at the helm.
and ultimately they are all under the "Strategic" control of the Captain.

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Re: South Korea ferry disaster

Post by aiyoyo on 18.04.14 11:03

The captain, Lee Joon-seok, who is reportedly in his 60s, escaped from the 6,835-ton Sewol just 40 minutes after the vessel apparently ran aground and started to list severely.

Survivors and the families of 287 people, most of them teenagers, who are thought to be trapped inside the sunken vessel directed their anger towards Lee, according to South Korean media reports, as rescue efforts continued in the dim hope that some of the missing passengers might still be alive. Navy divers tried to enter the capsized ship more than 10 times on Thursday, but were hampered by strong currents and poor visibility.

Local officials said 287 people remained unaccounted for more than a day after the vessel, with 475 on board, quickly sank in what may be South Korea's worst ferry disaster for two decades. Twenty people, including five high school pupils and two teachers, are known to have died, while 179 have been confirmed safe, including most of the 30 crew members, South Korean media said.

Lee, his face hidden by a grey hoodie, told reporters at the coastguard offices that he felt "really sorry for the passengers, victims and their families and am deeply ashamed. I don't know what to say." He had earlier been criticised after he was seen drying wet banknotes on his bed while being interviewed by journalists.

He rescues his bank notes quicker than he gave order to evacuate.

Order came too late and not uniformly. What system they used to announce evacuation I wonder?

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Re: South Korea ferry disaster

Post by PeterMac on 18.04.14 12:36

It is desperately sad.
On a plane you are instructed about exit procedures BEFORE you leave the ground,
On a cruise ship you MAY be instructed about your muster stations, some time into the first couple of days - c.f. Costa Concordia - hadn't got round to it !
On a ferry there is no such requirement.
But if it is correct that they were told to remain below, that seems to me to be a fairly indefensible instruction.

(On the Lord Nelson - see http://jst.org.uk - there is a FULL DRILL, including dragging all the wheelchairs up on deck without the assistance of the lifts, donning life jackets and everything
whilst we are still at the dockside)

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Re: South Korea ferry disaster

Post by Guest on 18.04.14 12:45

Is that the right website address PeterMac?

I just cannot - or can't bear to - think how bad this must have been for those on board and for the parents who received desperate text messages.

P.S. I think this is what you meant, PM.

http://jst.org.uk/

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Re: South Korea ferry disaster

Post by PeterMac on 18.04.14 13:17

No Fate Worse Than De'Ath wrote:Is that the right website address PeterMac?
I just cannot - or can't bear to - think how bad this must have been for those on board and for the parents who received desperate text messages.
P.S. I think this is what you meant, PM.

http://jst.org.uk/

Many thanks
Have amended the original
Peter

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Re: South Korea ferry disaster

Post by Guest on 18.04.14 13:35

I just read that arrest warrants have been issued for the Captain and 2 crew members.

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Re: South Korea ferry disaster

Post by PeterMac on 18.04.14 14:58

Châtelaine wrote:I just read that arrest warrants have been issued for the Captain and 2 crew members.
That will help !

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Re: South Korea ferry disaster

Post by Guest on 18.04.14 17:40

No Peter, of course, it won't. But it may at least send out a signal, that a captain must follow route, also when deviated [the one at the steer appears to be a young man with only one year of experience] and a crew must follow procedures in case of accident. The poor kids were ordered to stay INSIDE the boat ...

"Police and prosecutors are also investigating claims that Lee was among the first to leave his vessel, in violation of seafarers' law, said Yonhap, even as passengers were repeatedly told to remain inside."

http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2014/04/18/ferry-captain-left-third-mate-at-helm-korea-prosecutor/7855637/

[quote: MacLeod reported from Beijing  laughat ]

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Re: South Korea ferry disaster

Post by aiyoyo on 19.04.14 10:00

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/apr/18/south-korea-ferry-prosecutors-request-arrest-warrant-captain

Picture of Captain abandoning ship in the above link (I don't know how to screen shot it.)

The captain of a South Korean ferry that sank on Wednesday leaving hundreds missing, feared dead has been arrested, the country's Yonhap news agency says. Warrants for the arrest of two other crew members have also been lodged with a court.

The arrest came as speculation mounted that more lives could have been saved had the captain, Lee Joon-seok, issued an evacuation order sooner. Investigators were also examining reports that the ferry took a sharp turn just before it started listing as well as claims that Lee, 69, abandoned the ship, as hopes dimmed for the 268 passengers still trapped inside the vessel.

The official death toll from the disaster, which occurred off the south-west coast of South Korea, rose to 29 after several bodies were retrieved from the sea near the wreck of the Sewol.

As hundreds of divers, rescue boats and aircraft continued the frantic search for survivors in difficult conditions about 25km off Jindo, accident investigators focused on the actions of Lee and his crew.

Officials said a junior officer was steering the ship when the ferry capsized, adding that Lee, who has been criticised for apparently jumping into a rescue boat while hundreds of his passengers remained on board, may have been in another part of the vessel. Some reports said he returned to the bridge as soon as the ferry started listing.

"[The captain] may have been off the bridge," Park Jae-eok, an investigating official, told reporters. "And the person at the helm at the time was the third officer."


An image said to show Lee Joon-seok being helped off the stricken ferry. Photograph: Getty Images
Lee, who was being questioned by police about his actions, has come under fire for apparently abandoning the ship 30 to 40 minutes after it began listing. A picture has been released apparently showing him leaving the ship, with the help of maritime police.

Lee has not commented publicly on the situation on the bridge at the time of the accident. On Thursday, he issued a brief apology to the relatives of the dead and missing: "I am really sorry and deeply ashamed. I don't know what to say."

It emerged on Friday that the crew had not acted immediately on an order by a local transportation office to tell passengers to put on life jackets and prepare to evacuate.

The order from officials on Jeju, the ferry's destination, came five minutes after the accident, but the crew did not tell passengers to leave the vessel for at least another 25 minutes. Some survivors said they did not hear any instructions to abandon the ship.

Twenty of the ship's 30 crew survived, reports said.

The ferry was carrying 475 passengers and crew on a trip from the western port of Incheon to the southern resort island of Jeju. The passengers included 325 teenagers and 15 teachers from Danwon high school.

Reports said Kang Min-gyu, the deputy headmaster of Danwon high school, has been found dead in an apparent suicide near a gymnasium on Jindo, an island near the accident site from where the rescue operation is being directed.

A colleague at the school said Kang, who was among 179 rescued passengers, had been overcome with guilt. "As the teacher responsible for the students' safety, he was suffering with serious feelings of guilt," the Korea Herald quoted the teacher as saying. "The families of the victims vented their anger towards him – he was brokenhearted."

The 6,835-ton ferry sank about two hours after issuing a distress signal shortly before 9am on Wednesday. It is still unclear what caused the Sewol to roll on to its side and sink, but there is speculation that it either hit a submerged rock, or began to list after a sharp turn caused poorly secured cargo to shift suddenly to one side of the ship.


The Captain and crews failed their duty.
The captain who was seen in photo being helped off from the part of the ship that was still standing ought to be hang in public.
He abandoned those kids leaving them to die.

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Re: South Korea ferry disaster

Post by PeterMac on 19.04.14 10:36

It is a tragedy - that the Press which has the opportunity to inform and to educate  still chooses sensationalism over fact.

On a ship (NOT a boat !) there is generally a Master (Captain), and a 1st, 2nd and often 3rd Officer (= Mate = Officer of the watch)
The Watch officers actually run the ship for the hours they are on Watch.  Usually that is 4 hours at a time, then 8 hours off, then another 4, and so on.

But they take over the total control of the ship.  They do not "drive" it, by taking the helm. (*)
S/He may or may not be on the bridge, or in the chart room, or speaking to the engineer, or the Bosun,
S/He will have instructed the Helmsman what course to take, the engine room what speed they require, the Bosun how long it is going to be before the warps and
other gear needs to be prepared for docking, to take reports from the navigator on what the radar and sonar are showing, on what the weather charts are indicating, and so on and on and on.

If the officer took the helm S/He would be unable to deal with all those other tasks.
* There is an exception, and that may be when the ship is docking.], or is in pilotage waters
The Captain may then take up a position on the bridge, again in overall control - NOT DRIVING ! ! -
and one of the watch officers may take the helm.  But given a sufficiently experienced helmsman on that watch, there might be no need to do this.
The Captain stands apart from others, aloof and detached, and you do not speak without permission, or to respond to a direct question.

If you watch any War time naval film you will see this.  Sink the Bismark, the Cruel Sea,  Any Hornblower film, or Master and Commander.
THE CAPTAIN DOES NOT STEER THE SHIP.
Steering is done by an Able Seaman

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Re: South Korea ferry disaster

Post by aiyoyo on 19.04.14 11:19

The  technical duties may be the role of duty watch officers, but the Captain has overall charge when it comes to a crisis like that.
He is the CEO of the ship and every crew is under his charge and works under his supervision.   He is in the driver's seat directing his crews and the fate of the ship in a crisis situation is under his helm.

He should have assumed control of the crisis situation, ORDER the evacuation or at the very least supervise the evacuation, ensure that watch officers and crews do their duties properly and diligently -- urgently declaring an emergency, ordering the evacuation in good useful time, ensure it was done uniformily, ensure that it reaches every passenger, have all his crews go round each and every deck ensuring passengers received and understood emergency instruction, showed them where the life jackets were and have them dorned their  life jackets,  and in general supervise that everything is running to his order.

For him to be found in that part of the ship, the standing part of the ship to jump ship, would suggest he was never in the lower deck to supervise his crews. There is no way he could have got to where he was found jumping ship had he been in the midst of the crowd supervising evacuation there would have been a human traffic jam in his way. The ratio of his survival crews 2:1  to ratio of surviving children  1:2 speaks volume and that raises plenty questions - did captain and  crews fulfil their fiduciary duty diligently ?  Did they fail those children ? It seems life was lost through brass incompetence and gross negligence and not just an unfortunate accident.  Two hours it took the ship to gradually disappear is sufficient if not plenty time to evacuate.

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Re: South Korea ferry disaster

Post by PeterMac on 19.04.14 11:37

@aiyoyo wrote:The  technical duties may be the role of duty watch officers, but the Captain has overall charge when it comes to a crisis like that.. . . etc.

Absolutely right.
His duty is to coordinate everything. But at that point he should be on the bridge, and send other officers and more junior supervisors to various places to perform specific tasks.
And the reason he is on the bridge, and aloof and detached, is that if he is not, he runs the risk of getting too involved in individual rescue situations.

(When we dock on the Nelson each of the 3 watch officers will take one mast and supervise the handing of the sails, and then organise the running out of the warps.
The Captain will remain on the bridge - but will NOT be steering.)

The thing which is beginning to emerge here is the failure to order the passengers to muster stations, indeed the instruction that they should NOT.
That is going to be a difficult one for him to explain, even though they are trying already by saying the water was cold and people might have drifted away and there were no fishing vessels close . . .


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Re: South Korea ferry disaster

Post by Guest on 19.04.14 12:10

@PeterMac wrote: [...]

The thing which is beginning to emerge here is the failure to order the passengers to muster stations, indeed the instruction that they should NOT.
That is going to be a difficult one for him to explain, even though they are trying already by saying the water was cold and people might have drifted away and there were no fishing vessels close . . .

***
IMO anything is better, than being locked in a sinking ship  sad 

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Re: South Korea ferry disaster

Post by PeterMac on 19.04.14 12:32

Châtelaine wrote:
IMO anything is better, than being locked in a sinking ship
Now imagine you are on a submarine !

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Re: South Korea ferry disaster

Post by Guest on 19.04.14 13:18

No way! Not me.

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Re: South Korea ferry disaster

Post by PeterMac on 20.04.14 9:06

Sadly we are seeing the same "culturally determined" behaviour as we saw with the missing plane.
People screaming themselves into a frenzy and DEMANDING that the President bring Their Child here NOW.

What does this sort of thing actually achieve ?
We know and perhaps understand their grief, and frustration.
We can surely understand that to watch a necessarily slow recovery operation is immensely frustrating
but what does the screaming and marching on the Capital achieve ?
The divers are risking their own lives recovering the dead.
The floating cranes were in position within 24 hours.
The operation is not going to be abandoned.

Why do cultures develop such different ways of dealing with things ?

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Re: South Korea ferry disaster

Post by tigger on 20.04.14 9:18

@PeterMac wrote:Sadly we are seeing the same "culturally determined" behaviour as we saw with the missing plane.
People screaming themselves into a frenzy and DEMANDING that the President bring Their Child here NOW.

What does this sort of thing actually achieve ?
We know and perhaps understand their grief, and frustration.
We can surely understand that to watch a necessarily slow recovery operation is immensely frustrating
but what does the screaming and marching on the Capital achieve ?
The divers are risking their own lives recovering the dead.
The floating cranes were in position within 24 hours.
The operation is not going to be abandoned.

Why do cultures develop such different ways of dealing with things ?

Because people don't have to grow up anymore? So as children they can have mass tantrums when their lives don't run the way they want.
This was a terrible accident, the fault issue must be addressed later. Imo dignified mourning and support by and for family and friends should be the only action at this time. No doubt that is happening in many cases but it isn't news.

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Re: South Korea ferry disaster

Post by Guest on 20.04.14 9:24

Reportedly one diver has lost his life already  sad 

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