V.Ships Captain and crew commended for bravery by the IMO

Monday, December 16 - 2013

A V.Ships captain and his shipmates were among a group of courageous men and women from all over the world who were nominated for the International Maritime Organisation award for Exceptional Bravery at Sea.

Captain Safanov and the crew of the crude oil tanker DS Crown were nominated for the bravery award by the United Kingdom for rescuing 24 crew members from the container vessel MSC Flaminia which had exploded and was ablaze. The dramatic incident which took place in the mid North Atlantic on July 14 last year tragically claimed the life of the vessel's Chief Officer.

While they did not win this year's award, Captain Safanov accepted a Certificate of Commendation on behalf of the crew of the DS Crown at a special ceremony in the IMO London headquarters. "This award is a tribute to the bravery and professionalism of my whole crew during that dangerous operation. I am honoured to accept it on their behalf," Captain Safanov said.

Koji Sekimizu, Secretary-General, International Maritime Organization said: "The IMO Award for Exceptional Bravery at Sea serves to honour those who have put their own lives on the line, acting instinctively, with courage, to try to save others, when harsh weather, cruel seas or other extraordinary circumstances have put lives in danger."

The IMO received 34 nominations for the 2013 bravery award, from 10 IMO Member States and two non-governmental organizations in consultative status.

Two winners were announced: Mr. Jinguo Yang (posthumously), a crew member on the ferry Tong Chang Qi Du 11, nominated by China, for sacrificing his own life whilst trying to rescue a person in distress on the ferry after it had collided with the cargo ship Shun Qiang 28; and Aviation Survival Technician Second Class Randy J. Haba and Aviation Survival Technician Third Class Daniel J. Todd of the United States Coast Guard Air Station Elizabeth City, North Carolina, nominated by the United States of America, for saving the lives of 14 crew members from the tall ship HMS Bounty during Hurricane Sandy.

Colin Rawlins, M.D. of V.Ships (Germany) who manage the m/v DS Crown said: "Whilst Captain Safanov and the crew of the DS Crown ultimately did not win at the IMO Awards, we are proud their bravery has been honoured and recognised at such a high level. We join the IMO in commending the team for their exceptional actions."