Salvage & Towage Services - Operation Reference

Bulk Carrier "ACHILLEAS" 2013

On 2nd November 2013, bulk carrier "ACHILLEAS" (22,953 GRT, 35,458 DWT), laden with 26,250MT of Argentine extracted hipro soya bean meal in bulk, was disabled following engine room fire about 350 nautical miles SSW of Las Palmas. The incident occurred whilst the vessel was en route from port San Lorenzo (Argentina) to port Lattakia (Syria).


AHT "FAIRMOUNT ALPINE" (16000BHP, 200TBP) was dispatched from Cadiz to render assistance. The M/T "MARIOS" (5000DWT) was contracted to provide stand by services to "ACHILLEAS" until the arrival of "FAIRMOUNT ALPINE".


On the 6th November, "FAIRMOUNT ALPINE" arrived at the casualty's position and commenced towards Europa Point. Once convoy arrived off Ceuta, tow was handed over to S/T "MEGAS ALEXANDROS" (6200BHP, 73TBP) and sailed towards Lattakia.


During the towage from Ceuta towards East Mediterranean convoy experienced extreme weather conditions north of the Algerian Coast resulting in the breaking of the chafing chain and subsequent loss of towline.


The "MEGAS ALEXANDROS" remained standing by and circumstances determined the T/B "FALISCA" (8000BHP-105BP) be contracted. Drifting of the casualty continued towards Galite Island, Tunisia, and was about 1 nautical mile away when ship's master was instructed to prepare both anchors to avoid possible grounding. Casualty anchored and drift halted about 800 metres from rocky coast.


Attempts to connect towline by "FALISCA" failed due to adverse weather conditions. For safety reasons the AHTS "VOS THALASSA" (abt 6000 BHP, 65TBP) was contracted. . The delayed arrival of "VOS THALASSA" occurred on 25th November following which the conditions improved significantly allowing for her towline to be connected. The T/B "FALISCA" was released and towage by "VOS THALASSA" commenced with "MEGAS ALEXANDROS" escorting the convoy.


On the 3rd December, the convoy arrived off South Peloponnese. Provisions were delivered to "ACHILLEAS" by S/T "MEGAS ALEXANDROS" and tow was handed over to her after bunkering.


The convoy arrived at Lattakia on the 15th December and on the same day the "ACHILLEAS" was berthed.


On 23rd December, cargo discharging was successfully completed and towage commenced towards Cyprus. Salvage services were successfully terminated on the 31st December 2013 at Limassol.