S. Korean Ship Missing After Collision
Slammed into Panamanian vessel; 16 sailors disappear
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Mar 10, 2009 6:12 AM CDT
The Panama-registered cargo vessel Cygnus Ace sails after colliding with a South Korean-registered cargo ship off the Island of Izu Oshima, Japan, on Tuesday, March 9, 2009.    (AP Photo/Kyodo News)
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(Newser) – A South Korean freighter remains missing after it collided with a Panamanian cargo ship off Japan early this morning, AFP reports. Japanese rescuers are searching for the vessel, which was carrying 16 sailors. “We believe the ship probably sank,” said a coast guard official. “We found an empty raft. But we are yet to find any parts of the vessel.”

The collision took place in the dark of early morning amid rain and strong winds. “We are racing against time, but we are doing our utmost to rescue them,” said a coast guard spokesman. All 19 sailors on the Panama-flagged ship, the Cygnus Ace, were safe, the AP reports. South Korea’s Orchid Pia had been headed home.