There have been no technical defects found on board the Maltese-flagged chemical tanker M/T Key Fighter or its equipment that could have been the cause of the two fatalities on board the ship, a spokesperson of Sea Tank Chartering AS, owner of the vessel, told World Maritime News.
Two crew members of the tanker have died following inhalation of toxic fumes while working in one of the ship’s cargo tanks. The ill-fated sailors were found unconscious in the cargo tank by their colleagues on September 1.
“Their colleagues lifted them out of the tank and performed first aid. The two men were taken with a rescue helicopter to the hospital in Ålesund, where one of them was declared dead shortly after. The other crew member died at the hospital the following day,” the company said in a statement.
“The company is still waiting for information from the hospital about the cause of the deaths. However, the police have published a statement on the cause of the accident, stating that both crewmembers had been exposed to the toxic gas H2S, also known as hydrogen sulphide.”
Following a police investigation and interrogation of the crew in Måløy, Sogn og Fjordane County, the tanker has been released and left the port on September 1.
“Both men leave wives and two children behind. Our thoughts and prayers go to their relatives. The company is arranging for the families to come to Norway to take farewell with their loved ones,” the company added.
“For the time being the company focuses on taking care of relatives of the deceased and crew as well as safety on board. The crew has been offered professional assistance to cope with the situation. When the ship reaches the next port and the flag state has been given the possibility to carry out its own investigations, the crew will be offered the opportunity to leave the ship if anyone so wishes.”
At the time of the incident, the vessel was in ballast en-route Norway to England.
World Maritime News Staff