Nine Russian seafarers who have been stranded in Portland Port for a month after their ship got detained by the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) will all be repatriated by Christmas, international maritime charity Sailors’ Society said.
As informed, all the men have been paid and have received their plane tickets home. Four have already left and the final five are due to fly today, December 24.
The Nigerian-flagged ship, the MV Jireh, was towed into the port after it suffered power failure on November 23. The ship, en route to Senegal from Norway, had previously asked to berth in Jersey and then Guernsey.
The MCA detained the ship after inspecting it and recording 22 deficiencies, including failure to comply with on-board living standards.
The African-bound ROR/passenger ship was built in 1971 and was linked to the Norwegian company Norled AS, by MCA. According to BBC, the vessel was sold by its Norwegian owners before the ferry headed for Senegal.
Sailors’ Society’s alongside the Stella Maris chaplaincy worked on supporting the crew and help negotiate outstanding payment of their salaries and their return home.
“The sad reality is that we deal with cases like this regularly, all over the world – and for some seafarers, it can be months or even years until they are able to return home,” COO of Southampton-based Sailors’ Society, Sandra Welch, said.