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Grounded cargo ship pulled free in Falmouth

Grounded cargo ship pulled free in Falmouth

Published by Emma Carton at 2:18pm 18th December 2018. (Updated at 4:52am 19th December 2018)

A cargo ship that ran aground off the Cornish coast has been pulled free by rescue tugs.

Russian vessel, Kuzma Minin, started dragging its anchor in stormy conditions off Falmouth first thing on Tuesday morning.

Police and the Coastguard declared a major incident after she stranded metres from Gylly beach.

Earlier, the Maritime and Coastguard Agency said they did not believe the incident had caused any pollution.

Its rescue teams, the Coastguard helicopter, police and the RNLI have been involved in the operation.

"Falmouth RNLI volunteers have been afloat since 6.15am in horrendous conditions assisting a 16,000 tonne Russian cargo ship which ran aground off Gyllyngvase beach earlier this morning (Tuesday 18 December).

"Volunteer crews were woken abruptly to the sound of their pagers shortly after 6am, with a request from Falmouth Coastguard to launch the all-weather lifeboat Richard Cox Scott.

"With coxswain John Blakeston at the command, the lifeboat proceeded to the scene off Gyllyngvase beach, arriving shortly after 6.20am. The lifeboat has been standing by the vessel since to ensure everyone’s safety.

"The weather conditions are particularly challenging with force 7-8 winds, gusting force 9, a three metre swell and torrential rain. The conditions are expected to ease throughout the day.

"The lifeboat continues to stand by and the volunteer crew are liaising with the Coastguard to assist where they can throughout the recovery of the vessel.

"The volunteers have missed a day at work and have re-arranged their plans for the day to help the situation, illustrating their dedication and commitment to saving lives at sea".

RNLI

"We can confirm that the Kuzma Minin – a 180 metre Russian Bulk Carrier, was successfully refloated at 1408hrs. 

"This has been a successful and well-coordinated operation involving multiple agencies. 

"We would like to recognise the outstanding performance of the pilot and of all vessel crews involved in what was a very demanding incident. 

"The Kuzma Minin has been taken to Falmouth Bay to anchor, in order for it to be inspected.

"We are now discussing the future of the vessel with the Secretary of State’s Representative (SOSRep) Maritime Salvage & Intervention and the vessel owners. "

"HM Coastguard and Devon & Cornwall Police have advised the search and rescue phase of the situation is now over and it is no longer a major incident. 

"To confirm, there is no evidence of any pollution."

Mark Sansom, Falmouth Harbour Master 

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