The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) is coordinating the response to Antigua and Barbuda-flagged general cargo vessel Thor Commander which experienced damage on the main engine near the Great Barrier Reef on Sunday.
This morning, a towline was established between the disabled vessel and the tug Smit Leopard from Gladstone. Thor Commander is currently located about 375 km north east of Gladstone.
Thor Commander is now being towed to Gladstone by the tug and will arrive in port later this week.
AMSA tasked a tug from Gladstone to respond and the two merchant vessels responded to a broadcast to shipping in the area ahead of the owners of Thor Commander entering into a commercial arrangement with the tug’s owners.
Prior to the tug’s arrival, a towline was maintained between the disabled vessel and an assisting Chinese flagged merchant vessel, Xinfa Hai, to prevent further drifting. Queensland police vessel Lyle M Hoey also diverted and assisted in establishing the towline between the two merchant ships.
The 2011-built, 9,739 dwt Thor Commander, owned and operated by Thorco Shipping, was drifting north-east of Perkins Reef and north of Elusive Reef in the Swains Reefs group, about 379 km north-east of Gladstone when it was disabled.