The moments before a cargo ship flipped over and caught fire
In the early hours of Sunday morning, a cargo ship began leaning into the water on the way to capsizing off the south coast of Georgia.
According to the US Coast Guard, the ship – called the Golden Ray – began to tilt off its port side. 20 of the 24 crew members have been rescued, however, dangerous conditions forced officials to call the rescue operation short.
In videos taken by the Coast Guard, the ship can be seen on its side. Smoke, presumed to be from the ship’s engine room, can also be seen coming from the top decks.
A @USCG Air Station Savannah helicopter crew and port partners rescued 20 people early this morning after the Golden Ray, a 656-foot vehicle carrier, was reported disabled and listing. 4 crew members are still unaccounted for. Video available here: https://t.co/WxHwVs9LPN pic.twitter.com/dD92UPuHH9— USCGSoutheast (@USCGSoutheast) September 8, 2019
According to a release by the Coast Guard, additional efforts are being made to mitigate the dispersion of pollutants into the water. The George department of public health also warned swimmers to stay away from the area.
Four members of the crew are still missing, in what the Coast Guard described as a “complex situation”. When asked what prompted the ship to capsize in the first place, the Commander in charge said it was an “ongoing investigation”.
The rescued crew members were picked up by helicopter, at around 5:22 AM. You can see the rescue in the video below:
According to the Coast Guard, various teams are currently deployed around the capsized vessel.