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STORY FROM East Coast Radio website www.ecr.co.za

Emergency officials have airlifted 15 crewman from the stricken bulk tanker that ran aground on the KZN North Coast earlier today.

The 164 metre ship ran aground about 200 metres off shore at Sheffield Beach at Salt Rock. 

Three helicopters were used to lift the crew members off the ship, one by one.





(Above: Tracey Izatt submitted these photos of the rescue effort)

(The ship gets pounded by waves. Photos courtesy CPIMAGE)

The National Sea Rescue Institute's Craig Lambinon says the bad weather affected operations.

"At this stage obviously very rough sea conditions are being experienced, which are based on storm conditions happening at deep sea, so this will have an impact on this operation.

"But we believe the high tide may even aid the operation to get this vessel off where she is lying aground, and out to sea."

(Above: Jim Brown submitted another perspective of the ship)

Emergency officials have urged locals not to head down to the scene, as the increased traffic is hampering rescue efforts.

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