Cargo Ship Disappears Near Eye of Hurricane

Coast Guard is searching for the El Faro and its 33 crew members
By Michael Harthorne,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 2, 2015 2:13 PM CDT
An American cargo ship with 33 crew members disappeared Thursday just west of the Bahamas and near the eye of Hurricane Joaquin.   (NOAA via AP)

(Newser) – The Coast Guard has not been able to reestablish contact with an American cargo ship that disappeared near the eye of Hurricane Joaquin after taking on water and losing power, Action News Jacksonville reports. There are 28 US citizens and five Polish nationals on board. The 735-foot El Faro left Jacksonville Tuesday bound for Puerto Rico, according to a press release from owners TOTE Maritime. The company lost contact with the ship Thursday. The last report from the El Faro said crews had contained flooding, but the ship had a 15-degree list and no propulsion, Action News reports.

The Coast Guard has sent out multiple search parties to look for the El Faro, which was last heard from just west of the Bahamas, First Coast News reports. Hurricane Joaquin, a Category 4 storm, is currently battering the island nation. "We have reached out to the families of those impacted and have established open lines of communication to provide them with timely updates," TOTE Maritime states. "Our thoughts and prayers are with the individuals and their families." (Read more Hurricane Joaquin stories.)

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