Coast Guard helps tow disabled freighter into Newark harbor
NEWARK — A 600 foot freighter that became disabled more than 100 miles away from Atlantic City made a long and difficult trip to Newark with the help of the U.S. Coast Guard.
The GDF Suez North Sea reported losing propulsion around 9 p.m. on Tuesday night with 21 people on board. While the crew tried for two days to fix the engines, the efforts ultimately proved unsuccessful, according to the Coast Guard.
A plane from Air Station Cape Cod made contact with the ship on Friday morning and the parent company of the boat sent a tugboat from the port of New York and New Jersey to help the freighter finish its voyage. Towing started around 12:30 on Friday afternoon with the Coast Guard helping the tug and the freighter navigate through the water.
The boat finally reached New York harbor on Sunday and was guided to its berth in Newark.
"There is nothing routine about taking a loaded freighter under tow offshore and bringing her safely into port," Capt. Jason Tama, commander of Coast Guard Sector New York. "This was a successful team effort involving a number of port partners and commercial salvage assets from the Port of New York and New Jersey."
Tama said the Coast Guard was "grateful" to all involved for their professionalism and duty to protect the crew, the vessel, and the port."
The freighter was carrying cement, and the reason for the loss propulsion is currently being investigated, according to the Coast Guard.