Chilean wellboat sinks, killing thousands of Australis Seafoods’ salmon

Thousands of salmon perished after the wellboat that picked them up from Australis Seafoods’ Punta Ramón site in Chile sank in Magallanes on Wednesday morning local time, but thankfully sparing the lives of the 13 crew members.

Recovery of the wellboat Heimdall and removal of the fish by the Chilean Navy is underway, as well as an investigation of what might have caused it to sink.


Heimdall, built in 2013, was transporting 180 tons of live fish, equivalent to 24,000 units of salmon, said Chilean media, quoting the Maritime Authority.

The vessel went aground, took in water before sinking. The crew used their life rafts and alerted the local rescue coordination centre. The logistics support ship Thor, which was sailing nearby, rescued the 13 uninjured crew members. Up to that moment, no traces of fuel could be seen, and as a preventive measure the Thor ship deployed its containment barriers, said the reports.

SalmonBusiness reached out to Australis Seafoods for comment.

Wellboat Heimdall, seen here in a shipyard in 2013, sank in the waters of Chile on Wednesday after picking up 180 tons of salmon from an Australis Seafoods farm. All 13 crew members were uninjured. Photo: OBSCHILE

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