Over 20 faults found aboard death ship in Aberdeen

The Banff-registered vessel was detained in Aberdeen Harbour. Picture: Craig Stephen

The Banff-registered vessel was detained in Aberdeen Harbour. Picture: Craig Stephen

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More than 20 faults were found on board a vessel that was detained after a crewman fell overboard and died.

Nuertey Annang, of Ghana, disappeared after going over the side of the Banff-registered Aquarius on August 17.

A massive search of the water off the coast of Aberdeen was launched involving the coastguard and nearby ships but no trace of the 47-year-old was found.

In the wake of the tragedy the Marine Accident Investigations Branch launched an inquiry to establish the circumstances of Mr Annang’s death.

And according to the Marine and Coastguard Agency an inspection found a total of 23 “deficiencies” with the Banff-registered vessel after it was detained at Aberdeen Harbour on August 23.

The vessel has now been added to the list of ships detained in port since 2009.

The alarm was sounded in the early hours of August 17 after Mr Annang went over the side of the Aquarius, while fishing in calm weather conditions near Girdleness Lighthouse.

Crew members reversed the vessel and threw him a life ring but he disappeared from sight.

Coastguard rescue teams were called out to help with the search and eleven other vessels, including lifeboats and tugs, also scoured the area in the hope of finding the missing man.

However, the search was stood down about 11am the following day when they failed to recover any trace of him.

Vessels were searching along a relatively small area of the sea between the harbour at Aberdeen and Findon, a small fishing village eight miles south.

The Marine Accidents Investigation Branch confirmed yesterday that the probe into the circumstances of Mr Annang’s death was still “ongoing”. A spokesman added: “A report will be published in due course.” The trawler was involved in another rescue operation earlier this year when its gearbox failed during stormy weather off the coast of Orkney.

The 21-metre vessel got into difficulty in heavy swells near Noup Head on February 27.

The Stromness RNLI lifeboat was scrambled to the scene and the crew attached a towline to the fishing vessel and pulled it nearer the mainland until another fishing vessel could take over the tow.

And the ship’s skipper Scott Shepherd was fined £6,000 in court last year after leading fishery inspectors on a three-day chase around Scotland.

The crew had been fishing off in the Outer Hebrides in March 2013 when inspectors attempted to board and investigate her catch.

But despite repeated foghorn blasts from the patrol boat the crew set another course and led officials on a 100-mile chase.

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