Safe and sound: 10 Indonesian crewmen saved after barter trade boats sink in bad weather near Pontian

JOHOR BARU: Ten Indonesian nationals were fortunate to be rescued swiftly after two coconut-laden barter trade boats sank in different locations around Pulau Pisang near Pontian.

Johor Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) director First Admiral Nurul Hizam Zakaria said the incidents occurred at around 4am on Saturday (April 24) morning.

“The Johor Baru Maritime Rescue Sub-Centre received information from the Batu Pahat maritime zone that two barter trade boats sank 5.6 nautical miles and 15.3 nautical miles south-west of Pulau Pisang.

“Based on initial reports, the two vessels, ferrying coconuts from Sungai Guntung port in Indonesia and heading towards Batu Pahat, were hit by bad weather and heavy rainfall, ” he said in a statement here on Sunday (April 25).

First Adm Nurul Hizam added that the six crewmen of one barter trade boat were rescued by local fishermen and brought to the Pontian Kecil jetty.

He said the four crewmen from the second vessel were saved by other barter trade boats that were near their location.

“MMEA deployed our boat to the location of the second vessel to take the four victims and brought them to the Batu Pahat maritime zone for further action, ” he said, adding that all 10 victims, between the ages of 27 and 53, were unhurt.

First Adm Nurul Hizam reminded the maritime community to always bring and wear their life jackets when out to sea.

“They are also encouraged to bring along a personal locator Beacon as a safety precaution in the event of an emergency, ” he added.

He also urged the public to report any criminal activities or emergencies at sea by contacting the Johor Maritime Operation Centre hotline number at 07-2199404 or through the MERS 999 emergency number.

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