A fairly minor casualty occurred near the Dardenelles when a Turkish local ferry with 180 aboard ran aground, at full speed according to one report.
No-one was greatly hurt but the Gokceada 1 3,780,’93 looked exceedingly familiar and sure enough she was an ex Norwegian fjord mainstay Sunnhordland ex Honningsvaag I’d often seen in Norwegian waters. She was soon recovered.
Another stranding in Chilean Patagonia saw the locally built ice strengthened excursion vessel Skorpios II, 1,523,’89 high and dry, again with no casualties or pollution. The Chilean Navy assisted in the rescue of 89 passengers and 31 crew near the port of Puerto Montt in southern Chile.
Much luckier in April were the 156 passengers aboard the Acciona-Trasmed ferry Sorrento, Palma Mallorca to Valencia, which caught fire not long after sailing.
Sorrento chartered from the Italian company Atlantica di Navigazione is a Visentini type like the Norman Atlantic which burnt out in the Adriatic at the turn of the New Year.
I wondered then and I still do: how can a fire of that nature be contained once it takes hold on any vessel with semi open car decks of highly flammable materials, not least vehicle fuel tanks, where oxygen feeds and wind fans the flames?
Is this a major design issue? If not how not? Sorrento has burnt out and as I write is under tow until a port is found that will take her.