New Delhi [India], May 20 (ANI): Over 710 people who were in barges and vessels off the Mumbai coast faced "adverse incidents" due to the impact of Cyclone Tauktae and 628 have been rescued so far, petroleum ministry sources said on Thursday.
The sources said P-305 construction barge, which was carrying 261 personnel, stayed near the platform where it was deployed. Its anchors gave away due to impact of cyclone, it started drifting, hit an unmanned platform and subsequently capsized.
The sources said that 186 personnel on the barge have been rescued, 49 bodies have been recovered and search is on for the remaining 26 crew members.
They said Varaprada, a tug boat that was towing barge Gal Constructor to the coast, was carrying 13 personnel and two have been rescued while search for remaining 11 is being done.
The sources said there were 7675 personnel in 342 installations of which 243 were fixed and 99 floating and 6,961 personnel stayed safe at respective locations. The sources said 94 of 99 floating vessels and rigs remained safe at appropriate locations at sea or shore and remaining five vessels carrying 714 personnel faced adverse situation.
"Seven hundred and fourteen personnel were involved in adverse incidents in the five vessels out of which 628 have been rescued and evacuated till now," a source said.
Based on the weather warning, ONGC activated its emergency response system and issued instructions to take action as per the standard operating procedure. The installations took appropriate actions, including staying at the safe mode or returning to the safe locations to the anchoring points.
The sources said construction barge Support Station-3 was carrying 202 personnel and encountered mechanical problem while moving to safe location. Its towing wire line snapped and started drifting and eventually all people were brought to shore safely.
Sagar Bhushan drill ship of ONGC was carrying 101 personnel and was required to stay there as per SOP. However, its anchors gave away and it developed mechanical fault in the steering system. Eventually all people were brought to shore safely.
The sources said Gal Constructor-Construction barge carrying 137 personnel was at safe location. However, its anchors had given away and it started drifting. Eventually, all people were safely rescued and brought to shore.
Six vessels of Indian Navy - INS Kochi, INS Kolkata, INS Talwar, INS Beas, INS Betwa and INS Teg, five vessels of Coast Guard - ICG Smarth, Juliet, ICG 206, CG Patrol and ICG Shoor, 20 ONGC vessels, one Afcons vessel have been deployed in the search operation.
Fifteen helicopters of Navy, ONGC and Coast Guard have been deployed for aerial survey. (ANI)