North Coast December 14, 2023 | 9:53 am

Cargo ship sinks off Puerto Plata, overweight suspected cause

Puerto Plata.- A roll-on/roll-off (ro-ro) cargo ship, “Two Brothers,” sank in the Atlantic Ocean while en route from Puerto Plata to the Turks & Caicos Islands. The ship, departing around 6:30 pm on Tuesday, reportedly succumbed to overweight issues on board.

Owned by two brothers known as “Los Mellos” from the Nuevo Renacer sector (Aguas Negras), the ship was carrying several vehicles and containers. The crew consisted of 12 men, including the captain, Valentín Polanco Vásquez (El Gringo). Among the crew were Fernando José Cordero Martínez, Ricardo Camacho, Darvin Valentín Polanco Calvo, and Julio Martín Guerrero.  Six crew members were rescued by the cruise ship “Carnival Vista,” which was heading to the Amber Cove terminal in Puerto Plata.

There is unconfirmed information suggesting that five crew members were rescued by another boat that took them to Manzanillo. The search for another of the ship’s occupants continues.

The incident has sparked concern among the relatives of the crew, many of whom have gathered outside the Dominican Republic Navy’s Port Captaincy seeking information. Luis Marte, the uncle of crew member Luis Miguel Rotestan, expressed frustration over the authorities’ decision to allow the ship’s departure without considering the weather conditions and the vessel’s overload.

This tragic incident underscores the importance of adhering to maritime safety regulations, including those concerning ship loading and weather considerations, to prevent such occurrences.

0 0 votes
Article Rating
Notify of

Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Paul Tierney
December 14, 2023 2:19 pm

Because of a lack of enforcement of load size and weight regulations some people in the cargo transportation industries create risky load blivets to make a few Pesos more. There are many overweight overfilled trucks on the country’s roads. So why not barges to/from its ports?

December 15, 2023 1:13 am

Why does this country continue to be so lax on the basic common sense stuff, yet is so stringent on stuff that doesn’t need that much scrutiny? I’m not one for government overreach but damn…this was very basic to prevent. Glad most of them are safe and [hopefully] accounted for. The weather for a while has been horrible with terribly rough waters. You couldn’t have paid me enough to do any water travel given the weather alone.

Paul Tierney
December 15, 2023 5:31 am
Reply to  Italman

“Why does this country continue to be so lax on the basic common sense stuff, yet is so stringent on stuff that doesn’t need that much scrutiny?” Answer is laziness, apathy, it does what is easy to do.