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Ghost Ship Adrift in North Atlantic

By Fox News — last modified Mar 16, 2013 04:45 PM
A Russian cruise ship with only rats aboard is floating aimlessly in the North Atlantic, hundreds of miles off the coast of Newfoundland after breaking loose from a tugboat.

Published: 2013-03-16 00:00:00
Topics: Safety and Medical
Countries: Canada , Ireland

13 March, 2013: The MV Lyubov Orlova — named after an iconic Russian film actress — was being towed to a scrapyard in the Dominican Republic when a cable snapped, leaving the 295-foot vessel adrift. A brief effort to re-secure the boat was abandoned days later due to rough seas.

As of Tuesday, the ship was roughly 760 miles off the coast of Newfoundland and 1,125 miles from Ireland, a U.S. intelligence agency told FoxNews.com. “We continue to receive information about the ship’s location, and will issue message when needed to facilitate safe navigation,” Christine Phillips, a spokeswoman for the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency.

The 37-year-old, Yugoslavia-built ship is slowly floating toward Europe. Phillips said she was unaware of any government-led efforts by any country to secure or salvage the Orlova.

Nine days after its initial departure, the ship was reportedly spotted by the Atlantic Hawk, an oil platform supply vessel that was able to intercept and briefly secure the Lyubov Orlova until Feb. 4. But Transport Canada — Canada’s transportation authority — then ordered it be cut loose since the ship had left the country’s waters and was in potentially dangerous seas with waves of up to 23 feet and 80 mph wind gusts. “Continued efforts to tow the the Lyubov Orlova would have caused unacceptable risk to the crews of the towing operation,” Transport Canada spokeswoman Marie-Eve Higo wrote in an email to The Globe and Mail. The agency said the ship’s owner was now responsible for its movements.

“The vessel has drifted into international waters, and given current patterns and predominant winds, it is very unlikely that the vessel will re-enter waters under Canadian jurisdiction,” the department said in a statement last month. The ship, at the time, was roughly 50 nautical miles outside of Canadian waters and was moving northeasterly, according to the Transport Canada statement.

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/world/2013/03/13/abandoned-russian-cruise-ship-remains-adrift-in-north-atlantic/#ixzz2NW0hljDI

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