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Faulty rescue drive, 50 vessels underwater

Sabbir Ahmed, Staff Correspondent |
Update: 2014-08-26 00:33:00
Faulty rescue drive, 50 vessels underwater

DHAKA: Due to the faulty rescue operations of the authority, at least 50 vessels are still underwater in separate areas of the country.

No trace of Pinak-6, which capsized on the river Padma with 350 passengers, was found for the same reasons.

Data acquired from Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority (BIWTA) shows 50 water vessels remain underwater in different rivers across the country while the figure is 56, according to non-government data.

Vessels those were not rescued include MV Raipur, which sank on the river Janmuna in 2005 and MV Nasrin-1 with 2500 people onboard that sank on the river Meghna in 2003.

The salvage operation for Pinak-6 was abandoned as the authorities failed to trace out any sign of the launch under the water following a hectic effort for eight long days.

 Sources from BIWTA said, a tender was called at the beginning of the year to rescue 26 marine vassals including 10 passenger carrying launches; but the move remain ineffective so far.

Rescue and lifting of the sunken marine vassals had not been possible due to use wrong equipments and use of backdated rescue ships in the salvage operation, according to prominent marine architecture and marine consultant, also National Water Resource Council member, Dr Abdur Rahim.

Rahim told banglanews, “The first task after a vessel capsize is to search followed by the rescue operation, but the machineries, which were used in search operation after Pinak-6 capsized were not suitable for heavy current.

Mistakes were from the beginning of Pinak-6 rescue work; Bangladesh Navy used Side Scan Sonar technology, which was not suitable for the operation in carbide water.

Another mistake was that Bangladesh bought the technology that can be used in turbine water but it can not be used for searching the riverbed of our country.

 Professor Rafiqul Islam of Naval Architect and Marin Engineering at Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (BUET) echoed the same saying, “The recommendation by marine architecture and specialists were ignored while purchasing rescue instruments.”

“Questions have been aroused on the capacity of rescue ships – Rustum and Nirbak – at different times,” Rahim added.

He also said, “The country could have used the ROV (remote operating vehicle) robot to conduct search operation underwater during the salvage operation of Pinak-6.”

“The ROV is too much expensive which might cost around Tk 500 crore but this technology is necessary to run a successful salvage operation after incidents like Pinak-6,” Rahim added.

BDST: 1013 HRS, AUG 26, 2014

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