ZAMBOANGA City–A passenger-cargo roll-on, roll-off vessel capsized late Thursday, more than five hours after it arrived in this city from Sandakan, Sabah.
Arthur Nogas, harbor master of the Philippine Ports Authority (PPA), said the vessel, M/V Danica Joy 2 of the Aleson Shipping Lines, Inc. listed and capsized around 9:30 pm while moored at the “T area” of the local wharf.
Nogas said the vessel arrived at 4 pm coming from Malaysia via the city of Sandakan, Sabah. It plied the Zamboanga-Sandakan route once a week.
Khymer Olaso, supervisor of M/V Danica Joy 2, said initial investigation showed the boat tipped to its right side and capsized “due to improper unloading of cargo.”
Olaso said the vessel listed due to weight imbalance since the port side (left side) was emptied ahead of the starboard side (right side).
“There was even a commotion between the stevedores as all of them wanted to unload cargoes ahead of the others,” Olaso added.
Olaso said there was no casualty since all of the passengers have already disembarked while the crew were all accounted.
The vessel, skippered by Diogenes Saavedra, is a 900-passenger capacity “Roro” vessel.
It was carrying 799 passengers that included 12 foreigners consisting of 11 Malaysians and one Australian as well as 603 deportees.
Nogas said they have yet to determine the worth of cargoes that were damaged.
The vessel was loaded with assorted goods such as food items, including vegetable oil and other dry goods.
Personnel of the Zamboanga Coast Guard Station and City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (CDRRMO) have immediately installed oil spill boom to prevent oil spill within the port area.
Engr. Liberto dela Rosa, port manager, without citing figures, said his office would incur huge losses in terms of revenues since the “T area” cannot accommodate other vessels as long as the ill-fated vessel remain capsized at the port.
Dela Rosa said the port’s “T area” serves as the docking area of huge passenger and cargo vessels coming from the other parts of the county as well as from other countries. (pna)