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Nine Dead, Two Missing After Freighter Sinks in Bohai Sea

nanhai jiu
China Rescue response tug (file image courtesy Chinese Ministry of Transport)

Published Dec 13, 2021 6:29 PM by The Maritime Executive

On Sunday morning, a Chinese freighter went down off Yantai, Shandong Province, with 14 crewmembers on board. 

In the early hours of Sunday morning, the freighter Tian Feng 369 was sailing about 30 nm to the northeast of Yantai, in the Bohai Sea. She had departed Dandong on Saturday and was under way for Yantai. At about 0445 hours, the Beihai Rescue Bureau of China's Ministry of Transport received notice that the ship was in distress. The bureau dispatched a helicopter and a search and rescue vessel to the scene to assist; by the time they arrived on scene, the vessel had gone down and the crew had been dispersed in cold water. 

By 2200 hours Sunday, a daylong search effort in gale-force winds resulted in the rescue of three survivors and nine casualties. Two more crewmembers remain missing in cold air and water conditions, and the search for possible survivors is still under way. 

Tian Feng 369 was a 300-foot coastal freighter owned by Tianfeng Marine Shipping, a small operator based in Shouguang, Shandong. 

According to Shandong News, the provincial government has ordered shipping companies in Shandong to conduct a top-to-bottom safety review to reduce the risk of recurrence. Coastal city governments have been ordered to inspect vessels under 310 feet in length and detain any with significant deficiencies.