Burning Iran tanker: Search for survivors resumes after blast

Iranian oil tanker in East China Sea could burn for a month, South Korean official says

Iran Navy Commandos in China to Join Oil Tanker Rescue Efforts

The ministry has sent 12 rescue ships to search for the 31 remaining tanker crew members and to extinguish the fire.

An Iranian oil tanker, which collided with another vessel in the East China Sea, is covered by reinsurance provided by the International Group of Protection & Indemnity Clubs, a source at an IG member P&I Club said.

On Thursday the Iranian Merchant Mariners Syndicate, an industry NGO, said it had written to Chinese authorities expressing frustration at the lack of progress in putting out the fire.

The 21 Chinese crew membesr of the Crystal, which did not burst into flames, were all rescued.

It wasn't immediately clear what caused the collision.

The company insists the engine room is "not directly affected by the fire" and says it is "likely" rescuers will find survivors.

The size of the oil slick caused by the accident is not known.

Iranian oil tanker in East China Sea could burn for a month, South Korean official says

By comparison, the Exxon Valdez was carrying 1.26 million barrels of crude oil when it spilled 260,000 barrels into Prince William Sound off Alaska in 1989, badly damaging local ecology and the area's fishing-based economy. Unlike the thick crude that gushed out of the Valdez, much of the light, gassy condensate from the Sanchi may have evaporated or burned immediately, Kwon said.

In pic: This handout picture by Transport Ministry of China shows a Chinese offshore supply ship "Shen Qian Hao" (top L) spraying foam on the burning oil tanker "Sanchi" (R) at sea off the coast of eastern China. He added the losses would be covered by an insurance company. The one million barrels of condensate are said to be worth around $60 million.

Prior to the P&I cover recovering to near full-coverage of around $7.8 billion on February 20, it was limited to $830 million per tanker for Iranian oil shipping since April 2016, following the lifting of United States and European Union nuclear sanctions against Iran in January 2016. The National Iranian Tanker Co. describes itself as operating the largest tanker fleet in the Middle East.

The Panamanian-registered Sanchin had a crew of 30 Iranians and two Bangladeshis, Chinese state media reported.

"We have no information on their fate", he said Sunday. The crew members of the cargo ship were all rescued after the collision.

In pic: The Panama-registered Sanchi tanker is seen ablaze in open waters, after colliding with a Chinese bulk ship.

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