Sunday, May 31, 2020
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Ship death victims brought to GB

Police in Grand Bahama were last night seeking legal advice on how to handle the arrival of two bodies aboard a Greek-registered vessel after it entered Bahamian territory.

Senior Assistant Commissioner of Police Quinn McCartney, who has responsibility for Grand Bahama, was unsure whether the officers had actually boarded the vessel, which was moored off of Grand Bahama, whenThe Nassau Guardianspoke to him last night.

He noted that the weather-related incident that caused the deaths did not happen in Bahamian territory and the vessel is not flying a Bahamian flag, so Bahamian authorities need to be careful how they handle the arrival of the bodies.

McCartney toldThe Nassau Guardianthat police received reports that the vessel, while off Bermuda, encountered rough weather which resulted in the two deaths, and severe injury to a third crew member.

The U.S. Coast Guard reported that it”medevacked”the injured crewmember off the merchant vessel Aegean Angel approximately 180 miles northeast of Bermuda, on Sunday morning.

The Coast Guard said the captain and the chief engineer of the vessel were killed and the chief officer was injured while inspecting the vessel’s integrity during high seas on Thursday.

According to the statement, Coast Guard helicopter crews from North Carolina flew to Bermuda Saturday to assist in the recovery of the injured man and to transfer two replacement officers to the vessel.

Hazardous weather conditions of 50 mph winds and 15-18-foot seas kept the aircraft grounded until 7:40 a.m. on Sunday, according to the statement.

“Although the unfortunate environmental circumstances proved fatal for two crewmembers, the multi-international agency joint coordination provided exceptional support, ensuring the injured crewmember received prompt medical assistance,”said Senior Chief Petty Officer Carla Harsh of the Coast Guard 5th District.

The Bermuda Sun reported that the Aegean Angel was due to call at Bermuda to land the two deceased sailors, but bad weather forced her to sail to Freeport instead.

Last night McCartney said,”We’re in discussions on what legal procedures need to take place. We’re talking to the AG’s office.”

He said the bodies were brought into Freeport and were expected to be transported to the sailors’home countries.

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