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Indian embassy in Washington extends condolences for Baltimore cargo ship collision, six missing | India News

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NEW DELHI: The Indian Embassy in Washington expressed condolences for the “unfortunate accident,” after a cargo ship lost power and crashed into a major bridge in Baltimore, Maryland on Tuesday, leading to its instant collapse and potentially disrupting a crucial shipping port for months with six people missing on board.
All 22 crew members of the ship, all of Indian nationality, issued a mayday call moments before the collision resulted in the collapse of the Francis Scott Key Bridge.This action enabled authorities to restrict vehicle traffic on the bridge, Maryland’s governor said.
According to a statement from ship management company Synergy Marine Group, the owners and managers of the Singapore-flagged container ship “Dali” have reported that the vessel collided with a pillar of the Francis Scott Key Bridge in Baltimore. The incident occurred around 01:30 local time on March 26 while the ship was under pilotage with two pilots on board.
“Our heartfelt condolences to all affected by the unfortunate accident at the Francis Scott Key Bridge in Baltimore,” the Indian Embassy said in a post on X.

The Embassy said it has created a dedicated hotline “for any Indian citizens that may be affected/require assistance”.
The Embassy is ascertaining details regarding the vessel’s crew.
The “Dali” had an “all Indian” crew of 22 people onboard, according to ship management company Synergy Marine Group.
In the early hours of Tuesday morning, the ship, en route from Baltimore to Colombo, collided with a 1.6-mile-long, four-lane bridge in Baltimore. Following the collision, the bridge collapsed onto the cargo ship. The vessel, owned by Grace Ocean Private Ltd, has a capacity of 10,000 TEU, with 4,679 TEU onboard units. It has a deadweight of 116,851 tons.
The crew alerted transportation personnel about losing control of the vessel, enabling authorities to close the Baltimore bridge to traffic before the devastating collision, “undoubtedly” saving lives, US President Joe Biden said.
“Personnel onboard the ship were able to alert the Maryland Department of Transportation that they had lost control of their vessel. As a result, local authorities were able to close the bridge to traffic before the bridge was struck, which undoubtedly saved lives,” Biden said in remarks made in the White House on the collapse of the Francis Scott Key Bridge in Baltimore.
Biden said that the investigation into the collision so far indicates “that this was a terrible accident. At this time, we have no other indication, no other reason to believe if there is any intentional act here”, Biden said.
Biden said that two people have been rescued from the scene, one in critical condition, and search is ongoing for six more persons.
“We are going to send all the federal resources they need as we respond to this emergency. I mean all the federal resources and we’re going to rebuild that port together,” Biden said.
Biden said the port of Baltimore is one of the nation’s largest shipping hubs and handled a record amount of cargo last year.
“It’s also the top port in America (for) imports and exports of automobiles and light trucks, around 850,000 vehicles go through that port every year,” he said.
“And we’re gonna get it up and running again as soon as possible,” Biden said, adding that thousands of jobs depend on that port. “And we’re going to do everything we can to protect those jobs and help those workers.”
Biden emphasized the significance of the Francis Scott Key Bridge for both local and regional travel, stating that it serves as a vital link not only for Baltimore but also for the entire Northeast corridor. With over 30,000 vehicles crossing the bridge daily, it holds considerable importance for the economy of the Northeast, he highlighted.
(With inputs from agencies)

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