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Freighter accident in Keelung still under investigation

2018/01/09 22:27:27

Taipei, Jan. 9 (CNA) An accident involving a Germany-registered cargo ship in Keelung Harbor Monday is still being investigated by the Marine Port Bureau (MPB) under the Ministry of Transportation and Communications, sources close to the probe said Tuesday.

The freighter, the Hansa Meersburg, hit and damaged a berth crane valued at NT$200 million (US$6.78 million) as it was sailing into the harbor.

After being hit by the ship, cargo that was being handled by the crane was shattered on the ground.

In addition to the damage sustained by the crane, a pier was also damaged, suffering a hole three meters wide and two meters deep.

Meanwhile, a 62-yer-old worker, Chen Lin-tsang (陳霖燦), who was handling cargo, suffered minor injury when the ship hit the crane.

The sources said the MPB will continue the investigation to find out the exact cause of the accident and who should be held responsible.

The sources said the Hansa Meersburg had a total of 22 crew members, including captain Moeschter Jens Uwe. The captain told investigators that he had never had an accident before, the sources added.

The damaged berth crane belongs to Taiwan-based United Logistics International, which has five other identical cranes in service, company chairman Wang Ching-hsin (王進興) told CNA.

Wang said the company needs some time to assess the value of the damaged cargo, and will seek compensation from the owner of the German ship, as well as recompense for the damaged crane.

(By Wang Chao-yu and Frances Huang)