The fishing vessel TS 97799 exploded and sunk in the South China Sea off Vung Tau, Vietnam. The vessel suffered the explosion in the galley from a cooking gas cylinder. Reports state only 4 of the 20 crew were later rescued. Authorities have launched a search and rescue operation for the remaining missing crew.
The 122 meter long general cargo vessel Golden 168 caught fire while anchored off Vung Tau, Vietnam. The blaze started in the forward cargo no. 1 hold. The crew requested assistance with a fire tug responding. The 20 crew on board the Golden 168 were safely evacuated. The fire was extinguished a few hours later. No reports of injuries. The Golden 168 had been at anchor for several days after suffering an engine breakdown while en route to Hong Kong from Singapore with 6,600 tons of copra. Authorities have launched an investigation into the incident.
On December 30, the 190 meter long, 56009 dwt bulk carrier Bulk Jupiter sank off the coast of Vung Tau, Vietnam. The Bulk Jupiter had departed from Kuantan, Malaysia with 19 crew and a cargo of 46,400 tons of bauxite. The Japanese Coast Guard and the Vietnam Maritime Search and Rescue Coordination Center (Vietnam MRCC) received a distress call from the Bulk Jupiter, but were unable to make contact with the vessel. Authorities dispatched vessels to the scene and contacted other ships in the area to look for survivors. A tug rescued one crewman in the water while other rescue vessels found the empty lifeboats from the Bulk Jupiter. Later searches found two bodies. Authorities continue to search for the remaining 16 crew members. Some reports believe the cause of the sinking was caused by the sudden lost of stability from the bauxite cargo.