Above photo: Courtesy of TSB.
At approximately noon NST, Ocean Choice received notice from the Joint Rescue Coordination Centre that the Atlantic Destiny succumbed to damages sustained on the evening of March 2 and the vessel has sunk.
“While we are deeply saddened by the loss of one of our offshore fishing vessels, we are extremely relieved and thankful that all of our 31 crew members were safely transported ashore and are currently in the process of reuniting with their families and loved ones,” said Martin Sullivan, CEO, Ocean Choice.
“At this time the Company extends a heartfelt thank you to the Canadian and United States Coast Guards as well as the crews of the Cape LaHave, Maude Adams, Atlantic Preserver and Atlantic Protector for their collective efforts to ensure the safety of our crew.”
An investigation into the cause of the incident will be ongoing and we will be fully cooperating with all regulatory authorities.
The Atlantic Destiny is one of Ocean Choice’s six offshore fishing vessels. The vessel harvests frozen at sea scallops; and Riverport, Nova Scotia is the port of call for the vessel. At the time of the incident the vessel was in the George’s Bank area.
All 32 crew members of the Atlantic Destiny, Ocean Choice’s offshore trawler that issued a mayday on March 2 reporting a fire onboard, were safely transferred from the vessel.
The fire onboard the vessel was extinguished, and all 32 crew members were reported safe and accounted for. A total of 28 crew members were safely taken via helicopter to Yarmouth where they received medical attention, food and accommodations. At approximately 8 a.m. on March 3, the final four crew members and two search and rescue technicians, who stayed with the remaining crew, were safely transferred from the vessel via the Canadian Coast Guard vessel the Cape Roger and are enroute to Shelburne.
“The safety of our employees is our top priority. It is what matters most to us,” said Martin Sullivan, CEO Ocean Choice. “Our hearts are with our crew and their families at this extremely stressful time. We are extremely grateful that there were no injuries resulting from the fire; and that all 32 crew members are returning safely to their families and loved ones.”
The Canadian and United States Coast Guards, as well as several offshore fishing vessels including the Cape LaHave, Maude Adams, Atlantic Preserver and the Atlantic Protector came to the aid of the crew.
“The collective efforts of our crew and all those who came to assist the crew and the vessel resulted in the best possible outcome for this situation,” said Blaine Sullivan, President, Ocean Choice. “We are sincerely thankful to everyone that helped ensure that every single crew member is safe and accounted for.”
Ocean Choice said it will work with the proper authorities and an investigation into the cause of the fire will commence over the coming days. At press time, the company is unsure of the extent of the damage of the vessel.
The Atlantic Destiny is one of Ocean Choice’s six offshore fishing vessels. The vessel harvests frozen at sea scallops and Riverport, Nova Scotia is the port of call for the vessel. At the time of the incident the vessel was in the George’s Bank area.