• Fri. May 24th, 2024

In a heroic late-night operation, Nigerian Navy personnel successfully rescued more than 250 individuals from a capsized passenger boat in Rivers State. The incident occurred around 10 p.m. local time on April 28, 2024, along the Cawthorne Channel.

The vessel, identified as MV PRECIOUS EMMANUEL, embarked from a local market in the Sangana area of Bayelsa State, destined for Rivers State. Tragically, the boat encountered severe stormy conditions and struck an underwater wreck, compromising its hull integrity and causing it to overturn. The boat, described as a three-deck wooden “Large Cotonou Boat,” lacked essential lifesaving equipment, and none of the passengers were wearing life jackets at the time of the accident.

Naval Security Station (NSS) 023 personnel, stationed along the channel, responded promptly to the emergency, ensuring that no lives were lost in the mishap. This swift and effective rescue underscores the Navy’s commitment to maritime safety, in accordance with the Strategic Directive issued by the Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Emmanuel Ikechukwu Ogalla, aiming for a secure maritime environment within Nigeria and the Gulf of Guinea.

Further emphasizing the critical importance of safety gear, the Nigerian Navy reiterated the need for local maritime operators to equip vessels with life jackets, life buoys, and other lifesaving devices. The proper provision and use of such equipment are crucial for the safety of all maritime travelers.

Commodore A. Adams-Aliu, Director of Naval Information, affirmed the Navy’s dedication to safeguarding Nigeria’s maritime boundaries and ensuring safe passage for all legitimate maritime activities. The Navy continues to monitor and respond to maritime distress calls as part of its broader mission to protect and serve the nation’s interests at sea.

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