Lysblink Seaways refloated and anchored off Kilchoan

Stricken cargo ship Lysblink Seaways refloated itself last night and has been securely anchored off the coast of Kilchoan

Lysblink Seaways refloated last night and is now safely anchored off the coast of Kilchoan, the Coastguard has confirmed.

The refloat happen “shortly before 9pm”, according to the announcement, which added that two salvage vessels remain on the scene.

The 7,500-tonne cargo ship ran aground in the early hours of Wednesday morning (18 February), leading to a small fuel leak that is being contained by an absorbant boom.

A statement from the Maritime and Coastguard Agency added: “The Secretary of State’s Representative for Salvage and Intervention is working closely with all the organisations involved and is monitoring the situation.”

Built in 2000 for DFDS Seaways, Lysblink Seaways was 200 miles into a 2,000-mile journey from Belfast to the Norwegian port of Skogn when it crashed.

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Social media reports have speculated that the skipper fell asleep at the helm before the 01:50 accident.

But we are unlikely to learn the truth until the Marine Accident Investigation Branch publishes its full report in the following weeks and months.

UPDATE: The Coastguard has now confirmed that divers will be assessing the state of the hull today.

In the update, Lysblink Seaways was described as “stable although still leaking a small amount of oil”.

Secretary of State Hugh Shaw said of the anti-pollution efforts: “Anything that can be captured and removed to minimise damage to the environment, we will do.

“There is a lot of salvage work still to be done and as a matter of urgency the dive inspection needs to be completed so that the full condition of the vessel is known.

“Equipment is still being brought to the site for the salvors but it is not easy to get to making travel time longer.

“The weather is favourable for the work of the diving team today and it is hoped they will be able to complete the inspection.”


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