Malaysian-registered tanker with RON95 petrol shipment, 22 crew missing in waters off Johor

JOHOR BARU (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - An oil tanker with 6,000 metric tonnes of RON95 petrol has gone missing.

A search since Thursday (June 11) has been extended to waters off neighbouring countries.

The Malaysia Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA), in a press statement released here, said MT Orkim Harmony was sailing from Malacca to Kuantan when it disappeared.

MMEA operations director southern region Maritime First Admiral Ibrahim Mohamed said the tanker was carrying 6,000 metric tonnes of RON95 petrol when the incident took place.

"The last-known location for the tanker was about 30 nautical miles of Tanjung Sedili east when it suddenly lost contact at around 8.50pm," he said.

Adm Ibrahim said on board the Malaysian-registered tanker were 22 crew from three countries - 16 Malaysians, five from Indonesia and a Myanmar national.

He said MMEA received a report from the shipping company Orkim Ship Management on the missing tanker at about 6.30am on Friday (June 12).

"We immediately deployed our assets upon receiving the report from the company," said Adm Ibrahim.

The search involved two ships and a boat from the agency with assistance from the Navy's KD Laksamana Tan Pusmah and KD Ganyang.

Adm Ibrahim said the search area now covers 20,000 sq km from Tanjung Penawar in Kota Tinggi to Mersing and also the sea areas of Singapore and Indonesia.

Adm Ibrahim said MMEA had also forwarded a missing vessel report to Singapore's Coast Guard and the Indonesian authorities Badan SAR Nasional and Badan Keamanan Laut Republik Indonesia.

"We have also alerted to other passing vessels along the route via Navtext to assist us in the search operation," he said.

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