Europe

Greek tanker sinks with captain on board

  • 5 March 2012
  • From the section Europe
Two tugs alongside the nearly submerged ship
Image caption Tugs surrounded the capsized tanker as rescuers searched the ship

A Greek tanker carrying more than 2,000 tonnes of oil has sunk off the port of Piraeus, with its captain on board.

Coastguards said divers retrieved the body of the Alpha 1's captain, while its 10 other crew members were rescued.

Officials said no oil had so far been spotted leaking from the ship, which they believe may have hit a wreck in the shallow bay of Eleusina, not far from the capital, Athens.

It was carrying 1,800 tonnes of fuel oil and nearly 240 tonnes of diesel.

The coastguard said the re-fuelling vessel ran into problems at about 10:30 local time (08:30 GMT).

"The 48-year-old Greek captain was just found dead," said a coastguard official.

A plastic barrier has been placed round the ship to contain any oil spills.