Rescuers evacuated a body from KM Santika Nusantara, a passenger ship that caught fire at sea on Thursday. (Antara Photo/Didik Suhartono).

Authorities Warn Burnt Ship Wreck May Endanger Sea Traffic Near Masalembu Islands


AUGUST 25, 2019

Jakarta. The Transportation Ministry issued a warning to ship captains on Saturday to steer clear of the burnt wreck of KM Santika Nusantara, a passenger ship that had caught fire while at sea near Masalembu Islands in East Java on Thursday night, killing three people.

The ship caught fire not long after it left Tanjung Perak Port in Surabaya, East Java, en route to Semayang Port in Balikpapan, East Kalimantan.

The ministry warned that strong waves and winds are likely to move the wreck around the area and urged ship captains to inform the authorities of its position. 

The National Search and Rescue Agency (Basarnas) said that by Sunday afternoon three people have been found dead and 308 survivors rescued from the ship. The number exceeds the number of passengers in the ship's manifest, which was 277.

Basarnas had deployed rescue ships and a sea rescue plane to find more survivors. Fishing boats around the area have also been helping with the search for survivors. 

"The manifest says there were 277 on board the ship but we've rescued more than 300 people. We're just hoping that everyone has been found and no one is still floating out there in the sea," Basarnas head Rear Marshal Bagus Puruhito said on Sunday.

Five survivors suffering from burn injuries who were rescued by fishing boats arrived in Surabaya on Sunday and were immediately sent to hospital to receive medical treatment.