Crew abandoned sinking 500-foot cargo ship Rich Forest in Pacific

By Vessels

Crew members had to abandon the 500-foot cargo ship MV Rich Forest in the Pacific, 400 miles west of Guam. 24 people working on the vessel left in life rafts and had been rescued by the AMVER vessel CS Sunshine. Two days ago, watchstanders at the Coast Guard Sector Guam Command Center received information for a flooding from the ship Rich Forest

The vessel was sailing to China and was transporting logs when a flooding in the engine room was discovered and that resulted in a loss of propulsion. The Chinese crew members had sent a distress signal informing that the Rich Forest was taking tons of water and generators had failed. 4 merchant vessels were contacted by the Coast Guard watchstanders in Guam to assist under the Automated Mutual Assistance Vessel Rescue System. The Coast Guard cutters Assateague and Sequoia were contacted to go the location of the vessel, but the problem was that they were too far way. 

Crew members of the Rich Forest decided to abandon the sinking vessel at 1:21 p.m. and entered life rafts. A few hours later all of the people in the life rafts were rescued by the AMVER vessel CS Sunshine. The rescue operation was performed without any incidents. The future of the Chinese crew is clear, people will be transported to the Assateague while CS Sunshine will continue to Japan. 

The future of the cargo shipRich Forest is not clear, the vessel is powerless and adrift. The Coast Guard is taking the necessary measures to warn all mariners and ships in the area for the location and the condition of the adrift vessel.

AMVER (Automated Mutual-Assistance Vessel Rescue System) - is sponsored by the U.S. Coast Guard and represents a worldwide voluntary reporting system, computer-based. Search and rescue authorities around the world are coordinating efforts to provide an assistance where needed. With this reporting system, rescue coordinators can select ships (in the AMVER system) in the area to respond to a distress call and after being diverted to respond as quickly as possible. Vessels that are participating in the program have to send a sail plan to the AMVER coordination center. Ships have to report every 2 days until arriving at their destination port. Having data for the position of each vessel participating in the system can be used to project the route of each ship at any point. If an emergency situation emerges, any coordination center can receive the available data and determine the position of the AMVER ships in the area of the incident. Vessels near the distress location will be sent. There are over 3,700 AMVER ships available  to carry out search and rescue services every day.

Name                 : RICH FOREST 
Type                 : Bulk Carrier 
IMO                  : 8126135 
MMSI                 : 355326000 
Call Sign            : H3YQ 
Built                : 1982 
Flag                 : Panama 
Country              : China 
Size                 :  152 x 24 m