The water depth on the scene of the accident is greater than 1,000 meters [3,300 feet]making it very troublesome to hold out rescue work,” learn the assertion.
However on Thursday, he’s going through strain from the authorities to disclose the circumstances surrounding it, apparently The ship’s proprietor, Aberdeen Restaurant Enterprises Restricted, mentioned in an announcement that the ship and its accompanying tugboat are nonetheless within the waters close to the Paracel Islands (generally known as the Xisha Islands in China).
The assertion, which was submitted to the Hong Kong authorities, didn’t point out whether or not the ship was nonetheless afloat, or whether or not it had separated from its tugboat.
The obvious shift within the letters got here after a request from the Hong Kong Navy Division of the restaurant group to supply a written report on the incident as a part of a preliminary investigation.
A spokesperson for Aberdeen Restaurant Enterprises Restricted instructed CNN on Friday that it has at all times used the time period “capsal” to explain the accident and has by no means claimed that the ship sank.
Requested if this contradicts earlier statements, the spokesperson mentioned the corporate is required to “report the depth of the waters in which (the accident) occurred”, and refused to reply whether or not this meant the vessel was repairable or afloat.
A significant Hong Kong vacationer attraction, the restaurant has offered the backdrop for a number of movies, together with “Enter the Dragon” starring Bruce Lee, and “James Bond: The Man with the Golden Gun”. It has additionally hosted notable visiting personalities together with Queen Elizabeth II, Jimmy Carter and Tom Cruise.
A number of proposals have been made to avoid wasting the restaurant, however the excessive value of its upkeep deterred potential traders, with Hong Kong Chief Govt Carrie Lam additionally ruling out a doable authorities bailout to avoid wasting the attraction.
The boat was towed away from Hong Kong on June 14, after almost half a century of mooring within the metropolis’s southwest waters.
Though the homeowners initially refused to specify the supposed web site, the Ministry of the Navy later revealed that it was to be moved to a shipyard in Cambodia.
Information of her sinking was met with panic on-line, with many Hong Kong social media customers bemoaning the unstylish end of one of many metropolis’s most recognizable historic icons.
Vacationer legislator Perry Yu Pak Leung mentioned the sinking of the Jumbo Kingdom was a loss to the town’s heritage.
“Hong Kong should take this as a lesson. The federal government, conservationists, historians and the enterprise sector should work collectively to guard and make good use of this [historic] Websites, “We’ve Been Long Off”.
Hong Kong lawmakers are actually calling on the federal government to conduct a extra thorough investigation.
“We need to know if the tugs company was involved in any human misconduct or human error at sea when they towed the jumbo kingdom ship,” mentioned Taek Chae-yun, head of the political get together “Third Side”.
Stephen Lee, a professor within the Division of Logistics and Maritime Research at Hong Kong Polytechnic College, mentioned it was “uncommon” for a ship to sink simply due to unhealthy climate, including that delivery was “very safe these days” as a consequence of advances in navigation know-how.
Lee mentioned the investigation may take years, particularly since it’s going down exterior the town’s jurisdiction in worldwide waters.
The Navy Division mentioned in an announcement on Wednesday that the ship’s proprietor had employed an company to examine the ship and guarantee its seaworthiness earlier than it was towed.
It isn’t clear if the ship is insured, which may complicate any rescues.
Andrew Brooker, managing director of Hong Kong-based marine insurer Latitude Brokers, mentioned it was “incredibly unlikely” that the vessel can be insured in opposition to loss or injury.
‘Marine insurance coverage market doesn’t like [to carry the risk of] 50-year-old boats being towed throughout 1,000 kilometers of open ocean in hurricane season.”
Brooker added that Jumbo Kingdom homeowners weren’t legally required to insure the ship exterior Hong Kong waters.
CNN’s Maggie Huofu Wong and Jesse Younger contributed reporting.